Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Listening Project

What is your response to the film? 

35 comments:

Rachel said...

My most significant realization was the extent to which our view of the world is filtered through the media. Because they are interested in informing us of the events, catastrophes, and conflicts taking place 'out there' it seems we know all about the dangers and backwardness of other countries, but we know hardly anything about the lives of the people themselves. Although there were pockets hate or aggression, so many people who said they liked, even loved, Americans, and it was the government they had a problem with. Why does our government seem so unrepresentative of our humanity, as Americans?

I do wonder how pervasive this trend of benevolence towards the American people actually was. Because the documentarians seemed interested in proving that Americans are listening, did they manipulate their film to inspire fellow Americans to adopt a similar outlook? Because we are reliant on this film for our knowledge of the interviewee's true responses, we have to trust that they have been presented realistically.

Simone S. said...

I was really interested in the concept of global citizenship that was presented in the film. Several people from different parts of the world alluded to this. As Rachel mentioned, we seem just to know about the danger and backwardness of other countries as we see it portrayed in our media. I think to become a global citizen, more effort would have to be made to become aware of the people aspect of other countries, instead of just the politics and conflict.

I think it would be really interesting to take this flim back and show it to the people who were interviewed. It would be interesting to see their reaction to what other people are saying about America all over the world. On the flip side, it would also be interesting, perhaps as a sequel, to interview Americans about other countries and see how much we know.

Regarding the filmmaker's and interviewers' roles, I think that the way questions were asked influenced the kind of answers that were given. I don't know to what extent the interviewers coordinated what kind of questions they would ask or if it was really just a casual conversation concerning what everyone thought about America. But I do think that the interviewers and their attitudes, personality, beliefs etc. affected the reactions of the interviewees.

JuliaC. said...

I don't think it fair to blame the media for Americans apparent ignorance of other countries. After all, the media is a business, and has to make money somehow. Coverage of different events declines not because there aren't journalists interested in covering it, but because there aren't citizens interested in watching or reading, which brings in revenue. Breaking news of disasters and conflicts is much more interesting to casual viewers and readers, and thusly to advertisers, than say, a feature on the pop culture of Mongolia. I'm not saying that features like this wouldn't be valuable, only that there doesn't seem to be any demand for them, and so its not good business for the media to cover them.

JuliaC. said...

Furthermore, American media doesn't just serve Americans. I recently read an article in Vanity Fair about the New York Times' coverage of the war in Iraq. The writer spoke to several young Iraqi men who said that while they found most Americans arrogant, they valued American media because "your press reveals the truth...the proof of that is your media revealed the scandals of the American military in Abu Ghraib and Basra and Haditha. The Iraqi media cover up the truth. They are working for the government. The Western press are working for themselves." The New York Times work in Iraq is actually a testament to virtue in the media. They are the only Western media organization that has not significantly cut back its presence in Iraq, and are reporting on stories that people do not necessarily want to read, even as the newspaper itself is facing hardy financial turmoil. So even though it may not be the best business strategy to cover stories no one wants to read or watch, there are news outlets out there who are trying to expand the American populace's international knowledge.

Anna said...

In addition to what Rachel said about the film makers' role in manipulating the documentary, I remember Ms. King saying that the film makers had collected about a year and a half worth of footage, and then cut it down to about what, an hour and a half? It makes me wonder why they chose to keep the parts they did, and how they decided whose interviews got cut, etc. I also thought it was interesting how the majority of the people interviewed spoke English, with the exception of maybe two or three people. Did the language partially dictate whose voice was heard in the film? Could there be a correlation between English and one's knowledge of the US?

On the topic of the role of the media in world affairs, what image to do you think is portrayed of the US throughout the world? Where have the people interviewed gotten their knowledge about our country and its people? From their media, or encounters with Americans? Just as our news may seem one sided and only a small piece of the entire picture, what other biases and uncertainties stem from varying perspectives around the world?

KellyR. said...

This documentary really related to what I experienced last year in Victoria Canada. I went to the Olympic Trials (not the USA) for the World Youth Hockey Promoters Festival and it was a GREAT experience. While there I stayed with a host family which I asked a ton about what they thought of the United States and the G. Bush. They have been here a lot considering Victoria, Canada is across the sea from Washington State. They were really curious in what I thought about the government and who I was going to vote for in the next election. I had great discussion with them about bio-fuels and other alternative resources. We talked about different clothes offered and the different cultures (which was quite min.). We would joke about how I would never fit in with their culture and that I am truly alienated. The truth is that I really didn't know much about there system of government beforehand but the explained much of the details of their government. I think the things that really we don't know we should ask because showing that you're truly interested counts for something. With all the other countries I met their perspective of Canada was quite min. and they always thought of Canada as a peace maker. The United States they always thought of as the people that always wanted to be different, different measuring system and all. Knew a lot about how our government works as well as the food and clothing in the United States. But something that was wrong is how they thought the government reflected the population as a whole in their perspective, like what Rachel said earlier. But when we talked for long periods of time they soon learned that wasn't true as well as the thought that "all Americans are very loud and well over done" but really this experience within itself was "A Listening Project" which allowed me not only to see the perspective of people around the world (Argentina
Bangladesh Barbados Canada Croatia England Germany Hong Kong Hungary India Ireland Malawi Mexico Netherlands Paraguay Poland Scotland South Africa Tanzania Thailand Trinidad & Tobago Uganda USA Wales
) but as well as learning about their culture as well.

ZoeW said...

The part that stuck with me the most was how accepting many of the interviewed people were about Americans. I always hear jokes about the American people or negative comments from people all over the world about how they hate America etc. but I was shocked to see people (like the men in Afghanistan) saying that we are brothers and that they like the people of America, just not the government. I had always assumed that people grouped the citizens and the government into one when really a lot of people recognize there is a discord between the two and you can't hate everyone for the choices of the government. While it surprised me, I was really glad to come to this realization because it made the world seem more accepting and understanding than I had ever imagined.
I also thought it was unusual how the men in Afghanistan were calling the reporter their brother and saying how they like the American people (despite being many miles away) while the people in Canada seemed to me more negative (despite being our neighbors). I still can't really understand why this would happen, whether it is emotionally justified or logic or bias..., but it was interesting to see the different factors that influence perceptions of countries vs. citizens vs. governments.
Zoe W.

Rebecca said...

At first, I also wondered about how I get information about the world from the media. But this made me wonder how other countries learn about Americans. It is the same way: through the media. How are we presented through the media to the outside world? It won't be the same way for each country.

Though there are those of use who travel to different parts of the world and know people from different countries, for the most part we don't have direct contact with each other. It's not only Americans, but the entire world that has to learn about each other through the media. I wonder how much this factor contributes to global conflict. How much would we be able solve these conficts just by making it easier for people of different countries to interact with each other?

Rachel said...

Several things about this film interested me... I thought it was really interesting that the majority of the people spoke English and addressed how America has influenced them through their culture etc but none of them touched on the point that they were all speaking English and how that influenced them. Also I thought it was interesting that all of you noted how the Canadians were so harsh on us. I thought it made perfect sense because just with friends, the closer you are the harsher you can be. Being geographically close as well as in general we have a more intimate relationship with Canada then with any other country.
~Rachel Broersma~

Jared said...

I was very surprised at reactions the majority of the people had toward America. I figured that America would be regarded as the world powerhouse, but I expected there to be a lot more hostility toward America. Intially, I was surprised at how most everyone separated the government of America from its citizens. But after thinking about it, this does seem like a logical distiction.

The critizms of the US suprised me some. I figured Iraq would be the biggest topic, but it didn't seem as prominent as I expected. Instead people looked at how the US needs to act as the worlds most powerful nation.

The media issue that has been discussed doesn't interest me too much i hate to say. For one the media is going to be biased and I have troubles believing some of the perspectives that are often protraited. Even this film has to be taken with a grain of salt because it is isn't a first hand account, but instead manipulated by some one else. I instead have excepted that i know very little about the rest of the world. This lack of knowledge doesn't fall on the shoulders of the media, but instead on myself. By the way, I hate blogger, it takes me an hour just to post a comment that i'm sure no one reads. :( maybe i'm just frustrated from changing my password for the fifth time

margot the magnificent said...

I also expected a lot more hostility towards America, since it seems like we haven't been being super friendly as far as foreign policy goes. I mostly knew that the media doesn't tell us too much, since I feel like I have been hearing people complain about the media all my life.

The part that actually surprised me the most was the little old chinese man's opinion about American corporations' use of cheap labor abroad. He said that this was good because it was giving people in places like China jobs. I was always under the impression that this cheap labor was viewed as bad EVERYWHERE, and that was why the yuppies told me not to go into old navy.

I also thought it was weird how mean and biting the Canadians seemed. All of the Canadians with whom I have ever interacted have generally been pretty chill people. This makes me think that maybe the reactions of most Canadians to the questions were pretty neutral, but were excluded from the film, since a whole bunch of people muttering "Eh." wouldn't be as interesting.

Elaina Rae Schrupp

shilpa said...

The most important thing that I realized from watching this documentary was the extent to which our media fails to provide information about other nations to our public. I already had a general sense of this idea after witnessing the limited coverage on the terror attacks in India and the war in Afghanistan over the years. With this documentary, I feel that I truly gained more knowledge about other nations(with the exception of India). I feel that the filmmaker did an excellent job in illustrating how it is now America's turn to learn about other nations. I feel that the press should strive to show us the reality of life in other nations, regardless of whether or not it is controversial. We deserve to know, and I feel that this is the first step to a true sense of multicultural understanding. How can we have understanding without learning?

Stitches said...

I had several reactions to the film. My first and most intense one was the extent to which our knowledge is limited through the media we choose to view, as Rachel said. And yes, I would classify it as a choice, because we don't have to view solely American news sources... the web is an amazing thing.

My second was how little we know about our own country. I have no clue why our policy is the way it is, yet what I don't know has changed how everyone in the world views me as an American.

And boy o boy do we live in white America. I don't mean to knock Colorado, because I love it here, but it really is white America. To me, having spent the first 7 years of my life on the east coast, particularly Virginia, I have been exposed to just as many situations where I am the minority as the other way around. When we moved out here, it was amazing to me that there were such a small number of people of ethnicity. And it is interesting to see how that alters our perceptions of those ethnicities.

Finally, remember that it was a documentary... so there are certain biases that apply.

For example, what message was the film maker trying to send? (It was interesting to notice the music, which progressed from happy to sad as the film went on. Some of the musical clips played for different countries weren't even from those countries... false representation much?)
And another... those are only certain people in the country, and others probably have a much, much, much different opinion.

Either way, love the world and your neighbor. Chances are, you'll have more fun that way :P

Oliver Newton

Ry Barney said...

My initial reaction to the film was in many ways, in agreement with the realist artist who helped make the film. I'm an HL art student, and the man who painted all the city landscapes, i'm sorry i forgot his name, had an opinion (at least before the film was made) simply that the art that a 4 year old can do should not be worth more or even equal to the art that takes years and years to master, like the work he does. Modern and contemparary art is a touchy subject among a lot of artists. However, i am a huge fan of modern art. I think a lot of it is very aesthetically pleasing. My main opinion is that i do not beleive that anyone should be able to put a price tag on art they did not make. The only person who can truly judge the value of an art piece is the artist himself/herself. Every person views art differently, and each person even has a different view of what art really is. Art does not need to be paint on canvas. Of course the parents of marla are going to consider her paintings to be beautiful works of art. But no one has the right to give a final word on whether or not one thing is art, and something else isn't. I thought a lot of Marla's paintings were really cool. I would not pay 1/4 of the price that they were set at, but i do like a lot of them. Ultimately, the beauty of art is in the eye of the beholder.

Rick_Andrews_Director said...

I notice that a few people have brought up how our view of the world is filtered through the American media. This would make sense, given that the majority of our outside knowledge of the world is given to us through the news. However, I was talking to my friend Phil after school the day we saw the film, and he raised the question about the effect media had on those who were interviewed for the project. How is America portrayed by the media in Palestine or China? What effect could this have on their view of the U.S.? Knowing the effect it has had on us here in the States, I'm presuming that it might have a similar effect in these other countries.

I also left the room after the video wondering what the director and editor left on the editing room floor. Many of the interviews seemed to have a similar message that the rest of the world does not think very highly of the American government, I just wonder if the director omitted interviews where the tone or message were different. Mediums like film can prove very effective in convincing a knower to view a situation a certain way, so I believe the director most likely had a specific message he wanted to send.

However, I still found the film quite interesting and well done.

Rick Andrews

alm said...

Watching the documentary was very eye-opening but at the same time I was extremely frustrated. It struck me that again everything we are seeing is being filtered through a form of media and what we are seeing is being controlled, this time by only 1-3 people. I know that what people were saying on the film was accurate as far as the individual is concerned, but what about everybody else? I know that I would hate for America's impression of the world to be judged by only one person.

My point is, I don't know if everybody in Iraq thinks as kindly of the US as was depicted on the video. I don't know and I can't possibly know unless I have personally gone there and interviewed a good portion of the people living there. I just felt like I was again being forced to view things in a certain way by the media.

Rachel said...

I think Julia made a good point about the media - that it is paid to report events, not necessarily construct an accurate representation of the overall nature of the country in which whatever event takes place. However, because media coverage greatly impacts our perceptions of other cultures, it is easy to see where we make the inductive leap from groundbreaking news to stereotypes about a country and its people. But whose fault is that - the media or the readers?

Don Park said...

The thing I realized about the Listening Project is that it takes something very simple and it applies it to the world. What interests me is that its such a simple concept, but many people never apply it to their knowledge.

How are we so sure what we believe is so correct? How do we know what others know? What really intrigued me was that these people understood everything about their own country AND the United States. They know famous actors, famous TV Shows, etc. But how many people actually know TV shows from other countries (no Korean Soap Opera doesn't count)? Being Korean myself, I have visited South Korea multiple times, and have seen many things that interests me. South Korea does pay attention to Hollywood. South Korea does show American movies with Korean Translations in many LARGE movie theaters.

Does America do that? Do America show other movies from other countries?

Anyways, this is just my reaction.

Oh and... I have always thought the United States as the Roman Empire in decline. Throughout history, the United States has always followed the basic trends of an empire. They go up, is considered "loved by the world", then slowly makes a decline.

Natalie Dunn said...

I thought parts of this film were very interesting, but i found most of it just to be kind of a harsh but true representation of our world today. Marla's father was at least portrayed as a very pushy and almost stereotypical representation of a parent of a "child prodigy." I sided on the emotional level more with the mother just because she seemed a lot more in tune to the reality of the world we are living in, being that fame is actually often times more destructive than it is beneficial. The dad seemed a lot more fixated on the fame and monetary aspect of his daughter's art work, rather than focusing on her happiness. I didn't find her art work to be that great myself, but I am also not a huge fan of abstract art on a lot of levels. I think that the mistake the parents made was what many make in today's society where fame is the center of the "American dream." In sports, acting, music, and other activities parents push their children past capacity at young ages and don't think of the emotional consequences until its too late.

SamanthaJo said...

I had a strong reaction to the film, similar to the reaction Mrs. King described. I was amazed about how much people from all over the world knew about the U.S., while I knew next to nothing about their countries. As I realized this, I had the desire to learn more about the world. But how do I do that? What I don't know seems so overwhelming; it would be very difficult to learn in-depth information about other nations while going to school, volunteering, participating in extracurriculars, etc. A solution I (as well as Oliver) thought of is just reading Wikipedia articles. Yeah, yeah - Wikipedia is frowned upon - but what other easily accessible source can give me brief information about nearly every topic I can imagine? I just feel so ignorant and helpless because I am unaware of the world around me.

Most of us are so sheltered here in the U.S. that we hear about major world problems (hunger, poverty, AIDS, natural disasters, etc.) but are so used to "normal" lives that these problems are only in our minds. It reminds me of the concept of infinity; we can tell ourselves we understand it, yet it is a concept that our minds are incapable of grasping. This film provided me with curiosity about others' lives and a morose feeling that I do not have the time or ability to adequately explore these curiosities.

Samantha Thompson

Clementine said...

I'll be honest, I never realized there was so much genuine love of America out there along with the hate. I was under the impression that we were on quite bad terms with the world, especially after the policies and events of the last couple of years (not a political commentary, I swear). What I really loved about the video, though, was that it showed how people across the planet - in highly industrialized areas like Tokyo and developing countries like some of those in Africa - are all seeking the same things in life. It doesn't matter who you are, values like world peace and food to feed everyone living on the planet are common to everybody. My question, though, is why aren't we working towards those goals? Why, when it looks like nobody wants war or poverty, is the globe in a constant state of chaos with people who consider other people their brothers and sisters killing each other? Why can't we all see that we want the same things in life and that the only way to achieve them is to work together and strive for them as a collective people? The spirit of ownership and the drive to have everything for oneself is too strongly ingrained in people - they need to be broken of such unproductive mindsets and move forward with the world to achieve those things that we all desire in life.

Then again, this documentary did have an agenda, and that can't be ignored. As Rachel said, how sure can we be of the amount of goodwill really felt towards our country? Sure, there are those out there that do consider everyone their brother or sister and that do want to make peace with us so that we can work together, but as I said in the beginning of my post, it has seemed to me like there is an overwhelming hatred expressed towards the American people, or maybe more specifically the American government. As much as I'd like to believe that there really are people everywhere that love us, I'm sure there are just as many that don't. You can't make all of the people happy all of the time, right? Anyway, that was my take on the video.

whitepanda said...

This film gave me the new learning that America isn't hated. For some reason, I had that impression (too much Zinn I guess). It expanded my knoweldfge in that I was able to learn about how other people saw America (and a chance to see other people in general, but made me realize how little I knew because that was just maybe 50 people out of the other 7 billion on the planet. Not all of them view America the same way, though there was quite a spectrum. I'm sure someone has already mentioned this, but it was wierd how countries you'd expect to be disapproving were actually quite positive in conclusion and countries you'd expect to be neutral or apathetic were actually quite vehement (perhaps their percieved positive association with America annoys them?) This probably connects with how the media portrays these countries as we are more bombarded with war images and protests from the Middle East and basically very little from Europe and even less from Canada.

Something that I wondered was how the people of color (black and Asian) that represented America were perhaps percieved differently or reaxcted to differently in the countries they visited compared to what is traditionally seen as "American" outside of America, which I have generalized as a white person, but I don't know.

whitepanda said...

oops, forgot to sign...white panda = Emilly Zhu

Mr. T said...

What really struck me about this move was the contradicting messages. It seemed to me like there were some countries saying that American meddled too much in foreign affairs, and that they should focus on their own problems, while other countries seemed to think that America ns were self centered and focusing too much on themselves and not bothering to care what twas going on in the world.

Although I may be generalizing things a bit much (the distinction between citizenry and government was stressed in this documentary quite a bit, so maybe the government is too meddling and the citizenry too self-centered. Who can say?)

Really, I was amazed at how tolerant many of the people in this movie were towards Americans. I was expecting nothing but the constant "America sucks" mentality that so many accuse IB of having, so it was surprising to see that people that I've always heard hate and loathe us only actually hate and loathe our government (can't say I blame them sometimes.)

The film DID however damage my perception of Canadians. I say they're just jealous.

-Michael Toland

Hannah said...

My best friend just got back from three months volunteering in an orphanage in Benin, Africa, and the documentary reflected a lot of the things she told me about her experiences abroad, especially about the general sentiment towards Americans in other countries. She said one of the biggest realizations she had while in Africa is that as Americans we are more cynical about ourselves than most other places in the world are about us. I feel that the documentary did a good job portraying that and showing us that although they may disagree and dislike our government most people from other countries don't dislike us as a general population.

She also said that a huge realization she had while traveling is that as Americans we have an extremely romanticized idea of other countries. Because I have never been to the countries shown in the documentary I wonder if the interpretation the filmmakers made of the different countries through the locations they chose to film and the people they chose to interview is an honest interpretation of each country or just feeds into our already romanticized and inaccurate ideas of how the country and people there are?

rachelchipndale said...

from the movie, I wasnt surprise about other people think that US is such a strong country and the main economic center. I also agreed with how people also see that the US is over protecting themselves. However, i think they need to understand that from the tragic of 911. The US has not idea when will happen again. Hence, the only thing they can do is increase the security.
i am wondering what if they redo the movie now and how people will react because now the economic crisis and Obama as resident. I especially want to see the response from chinese because china is getting more and more power and see the way they think of themselves compare to the condition in the US nowadays.

James Rogers said...

I think this film showed the true picture of the state of other countries, and through their perceptions of the US learned a lot about them. In India and China are truly in need of the manual labor jobs being shipped over seas by large corporations, and although this is antagonized by the US media it's clear it is making a difference to stop the widespread poverty in those countries and they're appreciative of jobs that here in America would be something to scowl about.
The middle east is also surprisingly less anti-US than the media would make one think. As they are in tune with various aspects of American culture and separating the politics they hate from the people.

hakysaclown said...

For me, it wasn't so much what others thought about us, but more how their thoughts are so much different from what I feel is the truth. Sure it is important to realize that we aren't doing a lot of things in favor of the world and that maybe we are little greedy, and I don't blame them for thinking that, but unless you travel to that country how can you really know for sure. One of the effects of a great economy is spending money on things you don't need. Up until this recession that is exactly what Americans were doing. Buying huge cars and houses. And why not? By biggest problem with materialism, which I think got the goat of many people in this movie is that you have to give some away too. Americans were greedy with their money.

But then again, not every American is greedy. What I see on TV, the fat people with escalades, I don't see on the streets of Fort Collins. Obviously this view is a little bias, but isn't the media today? People in other countries trust their media and believe that America is full of arrogant, white, bast**ds. I would even have to say that if I watched the news all day long I would think that as well. My view of other countries is narrowed just as much. Africa is full of black tribal carnivores and Asia makes my shoes and electronics. Obviously this is a little exaggerated, but proves my point. I think these people should travel to America and OPEN their eyes and see who we really are before they judge and I think we should do the same thing!

(Note: I really don't think that about Africa or Asia)

hakysaclown said...

hakysaclown = Tyler Johnson btw.

Natalie Dunn said...

this film was very interesting to watch as it gave a huge spectrum of views of our country as a whole. it is a good example of how people tend to generalize based on what they believe or think they may know. many of the people on this video had very strong views on america, not all were accurate and some even offensive, but they formed these based a lot on how our country is portrayed around the globe and also based on different culture's beliefs. I enjoyed listening to the different views and how they felt towards us as a whole united states.

kgibbs said...

I liked the film and the idea to broaden our horizons and learn more about the world is great. It is very easy for Americans to plop down in front of the TV media and to be educated about the world in by the TV. It mildly irritated me that throughout the documentary Americans were lumped as a solid people almost with a "hive-mind", but this generalization occurs for any nationality. This makes it difficult for people to truly evaluate America, because they are taking the whole package of facts as it has been told to them.

The obvious difficulty in making a film like this was/is who to interview and how much time to give them. I would would say that through that a feeling of the leanings/bias of the documenters can be gleaned. Three people in no way represent an entire nation. And I in particular would not pick those three to represent America, and everyone would pick a different group of people, which illustrates the challenge. To what extent did the listeners listen or impose their own views? It is that question that leaves me in the middle of the road about this movie between like and dislike.

My concluding thought would be, "Great listen more, but to what or who?" It's unfair for us to be asked to listen to the whole world equally, but 'they' only have been asked about arguably the most well known/looked at nation. In a way each of us must pick an issue to look at, the whole world is, well, rather large.

kgibbs said...

kgibbs = Kyle Gibbs

Haylee S said...

Even though I thought the intentions of the film were interesting (to show different perspectives on what people perceived America to be), I also found a lot of the things said to be somewhat irritating. There were thoughts about our country ranging from a variety of ideas such as: it is a nation of surplus, America should save the world, America is full of rich racist people, and bla bla bla. I know that a lot of people have their different ideas of what America is seen to be, but sometimes I don't really want to know what they think, because most of the time they will just beg our country for help, when in reality they should be begging the world as a whole for help (for whatever problems they may be facing). I also found it kind of strange when certain people from Africa or Afghanistan were saying how people from America are amazing beings who can change the world. I guess if that’s what they want to believe, than great, but it’s annoying to me how some (many) of them thought of America as a whole, and not as individual people who have their own lives and their own plans...which don't include saving the world. On another note, some of the people in the video seemed to be against Americans due to military inflictions on their families or just because of the stereotypes they hear about us. I find it one hundred percent understandable for the people who have faced destruction and devastation caused by Americans to feel resentment towards us, but the others who just stereotype our nation as a WHOLE, just really make me feel like their opinions don’t matter if they are going to be that judgmental (what did I do to those people who made accusations in the video? Nothing).
Sorry if any of that sounded very cynical. Just stating my reaction.
Haylee Schiavo

callaghan said...

I thought this film was quite interesting, it was unlike any documentary I have seen and kept me intrigued. I liked hearing what the world thought about America, it opened my eyes to the way we live. Just seeing all of the different people in their diverse countries made me realize how fortunate we really are. Many of them touched on our materialistic ways, and it was especially eye opening to see the children living in poverty talking about how badly they wanted to come to America. It surprised me that most people were so accepting of Americans it was really just the government that they did not care for. I had never really realized how fortunate we are with our living conditions, etc. Sure there are people living without homes but to see people with barely any clothes, and the clothes they did have were all worn, etc. was quite remarking. It makes me want to do something about it. That is really what I got out of the film, but also it made me want to learn about America and the way we do things more, and why we do the things we do (compared to other countries) The Listening Project was a really well put together documentary and I enjoyed what I got out of it.
-Callaghan Hendrickson

Big Boi PMIL said...

The listening project was a very interesting documentary, it really showed how the other people in the world think about America and the people in america. However i also found it really interesting how the documentary showed the societal based bias. It really shows how society can really form our understanding of other cultures even if they are false. A prime example is when the pakistani woman was convinced that the jewish people were running corporate america, this obviously is false but all of her society believed that so it stays in her mind true. This just makes me wonder how we as Americans are influenced in our understanding of other cultures and societies.