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Minnesota, land of 10.000 lakes

December 12, 2012 Leave a comment

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When we talk about the USA, the first thing our imagination draws is the New York  skyline with hundreds of skyscrapers, thousands of people walking across the 5th avenue shopping, talking on their phones and the typical yellow taxi waiting at us at the John F Kennedy airport in New York. But of course, that’s only the picture created by Hollywood movies, which doesn’t really show everything and not even beautiful states from the USA that are barely named. As an example of this we have Minnesota.

Located in the Midwestern of the United States, Minnesota is known as “Land of 10.000 lakes” due to the tremendous amount of lakes distributed all around the state. The economy is based in agriculture producing sweet corn, sugar beets and green beens, and it is the first state in the farm-raised turkeys.

Hardly can anybody think that the origin of Minnesota is related with Indians, as we tend to relate the Indians with southern states such as Texas, Oklahoma or Arizona. But there is evidence that the Chippewa Indian colony lived there before the Europeans arrived. A clear evidence of this is the name of several counties located in the southeast called Kandiyohi or Chippewa. Later on, the French arrived to Minnesota followed by the British. And by 1800 it became the home for many Scandinavian and German immigrants who were looking for new land.

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The climate changes in each season, having an abrupt temperature change between summer and winter. While the temperature in summer reaches easily 30 degrees, the winter is harsh reaching -20 degrees and with several blizzards that cover the landscapes with white snow. Fall and spring have slightly mild temperature. Due to the particular climate if the area, there is a special bird called the Common Loon, which has become the State Bird as it only inhabits in Minnesota.

The metropolitan area is focused in a particular area called the Twin Cities due to the closeness of the two main cities Saint Paul and Minneapolis. Even if Minneapolis is the most known and populated city, Saint Paul is the economic and political capital. In that area is located the main attraction for tourists: The Mall of America. It was until 2006 the biggest shopping mall in the world with more than 500 stores, an indoor amusement park, aquarium and daily events such as celebrity book signing or performance of famous singers.

Besides the consumerist attraction, Minnesota is the perfect state for outdoor activities. The long Mississippi riverside has beautiful walks. Even if it is a plain state, there are hills adequate for skiing and snowboarding, and the plain lands are a great opportunity for those who like bike rides around the lakes.

Overall, Minnesota is a traditional and conservative state distinguished from the regular image that people have about the USA. Its green and plain landscapes and just the simplicity of the state makes Minnesota a quiet and calm place for anyone who wants to visit it.

REFERENCES:

  • Peterson, M., 2005. Minnesota Memories and Images, Cambridge, MN: Adventure.
  • Ryan, G. & Beyer, S., 2004. Minnesota impressions, Minneapolis: Farcountry.
  • Anon, Minnesota. Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minnesota.

Yingjin Zhang, Spring Subway and Chinese cinema

February 28, 2012 1 comment

 The sources selected when describing the movie Spring Subway, have been all written by people who know about the subject of Chinese cinema.  Yingjin Zhang, who wrote the book Chinese national cinema, is an Associate Professor of Chinese, Comparative Literature, and Film Studies at Indiana University, Bloomington, so not only is he Chinese, but knows about literature and film studies, being his point of view of much interest when we talk about the new genres arousing in Chinese cinema.

He received his M.A. from the University of Iowa in 1987 and Ph.D. in comparative literature from Stanford University in 1992. Before joining the UC San Diego faculty in 2001, he taught at Indiana University in Bloomington, where he was honored with an Outstanding Junior Faculty Award in 1996. He served as President of the American Association of Chinese Comparative Literature in 1993-94 and received, among others, a Postdoctoral Fellowship from the University of Michigan in 1995-96, a Summer Faculty Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities in 1999, a Pacific Cultural Foundation Research Grant (Taipei) in 2000, a Fulbright China Research Fellowship in 2003-04, and a UC Humanities Research Institute Fellowship (Irvine) in 2005. He also taught at the University of Chicago, Nanjing University (China), and Shanghai Jiaotong U (China) as a visiting professor.

As our Wikipedia article is going to be about a Chinese movie, we consider it important to have people who are deeply implied in the concept of Chinese cinema, which is the case of all the authors cited above.

References

El reencuentro con Abraham Cahan

December 11, 2011 3 comments

En El Reencuentro Abraham Cahan trata de explicar cómo se siente una familia judía que tras tres años viviendo en continentes separados consigue finalmente reunirse en América y comprobar los cambios sufridos en el núcleo de la familia durante todo ese tiempo, no reconociéndose entre sí, ni física ni psíquicamente.

Giorgio Bortot escribe que a aquellos inmigrantes que trataban de entrar en América:

“Se les exigió: ser preferentemente europeo; ser de sana y robusta constitución, exenta de enfermedades y malformaciones que alteren su capacidad laborativa presente o futura; asegurar que no venían a practicar la mendicidad, y la mujer adulta, además, a ejercer la prostitución; declarar su religión; viajar en segunda o tercera clase; residir en zonas determinadas; al llegar, tomar otros recaudos para asegurar la defensa social”.

Read more…

The New York Times on Social Networks

November 16, 2011 Leave a comment

 The New York Times‘s presence on the web is huge, almost reaching  4 million followers on Twitter by the middle of November, having more than 30 Twitter accounts and tweeting constantly to their millions of followers. Meanwhile their Facebook  account has been favourited by up to 2 million people. Their LinkedIn account is not so popular, and it focuses mainly on their businesses. Besides, they have many blog pages (more than 30 also) they keep on their own, apart from their own webpage, a Youtube channel, another official web page, an account on Foursquare and a not too well mantained MySpace account. Read more…

Vietnam – La primera guerra mediática

November 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Guerra de Vietnam I (video)

En estos tiempos en los que las noticias vuelan a través de las redes informáticas y las conexiones vía satélite, me he detenido un poco para hechar la vista atrás y recordar la que quizá fue la primera guerra mediática de la historia. La guerra de Vietnam, una guerra que marcó un antes y un después en la vida de una generación; un conflicto que marcó nuestra niñez y que nos fue mostrado con toda su cruedeza,  a través de la televisión. La guerra se colaba en nuestro salón a la hora de cenar, gracias al trabajo de un puñado de periodistas que arriesgaban la vida para mostrarle al mundo un conflicto, cruel como ninguno, que dio origen a muchos cambios en la sociedad de la época. Read more…

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