Digitalization has caused major disruptions in the ways we work, and the pandemic has leapfrogged these developments for all of us. Digital solutions have impacted the content of professions, created new ones, but also changed the ways in which we work.
While many reports and other predictions have been written, how does the impact of the digital seem to young talent in different fields of communication? What to expect when you enter professional life, what are the advantages and disadvantages of digital working communities, and what should we expect from our digital work in the future?
This blog post, by Hadice Koç, Rumeysa Koç, and Lingyu Feng of Northwestern University continues the conversation by highlighting the complexities of global fandom as digital communities, one of the topics of the ICM820 course of the International Communication Master’s program at St. John’s.
For nearly a century, Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay has been severely polluted, failing to meet sufficient clean water standards. In recent years, the Conowingo Dam, upstream the Susquehanna River, has further contributed to this problem, as it has silted in and no longer blocks harmful sediment and chemicals from entering the bay.
Larry Hogan, Maryland’s governor, has far from turned a blind eye to this paramount issue; in fact, he issued a Section 401 water quality certification, urging Exelon, the owner of the dam, to contribute significant funding to reduce the bay’s pollution, which has been perpetuated by the dam. To Hogan’s dismay, Exelon has pushed back.
As a Catholic, who believes in the Catholic Social Teaching of caring for God’s creation, Exelon’s response concerns me. Pope Francis writes in his encyclical “Laudato Si’,” “The urgent challenge to protect our common home includes a concern to bring the whole human family together to seek a sustainable and integral development.” This makes it clear that caring for God’s communal creation must be a unified effort of all His children, which includes Exelon. Therefore, I firmly believe that the company should exercise a greater willingness to cooperate with Governor Hogan’s efforts to reduce pollution in the Chesapeake Bay. I also urge Representative Andy Harris to remain steadfast in enforcing the Section 401 water quality certification with Exelon, which holds the company responsible for reducing the pollutants that pass through the dam and into the bay.
Inter-Cultural Communication – Reality. Axiom. Image.
Presented by Dr. Razan Jadaan – author of the book
It presents a kind of revolutionary state of thought, opening the space for thinkers, scholars, societies and worldwide public opinions to think and re-think about the perplex present inter-cultural communication, creating new dialectical syntheses approaching authentic Dialogue.
The book wanders in nine chapters between theory and realism: defining terms like culture and civilization, attempting to explain the ways of communication between the Arab cultures and ‘Western’ cultures in the era of globalization, comparing the construction of the Arabic ‘oriental’ and the (European & American) ‘western’ societies in the inter-cultural communication, concluding to the fragility of conceptual grounds -between the past, the present and the age of modernism and postmodernism-, studying the presence of mass media in societies and between them, also analyzing its role in influencing the worldwide public opinions. The book reflects the shape and content of the inter-cultural communication between dialogue and conflict from the different points of view, noting the barriers against a constructive inter-cultural communication, taking the technological revolution and its challenges into consideration. This work suggests new constructive approaches towards an authentic inter-cultural dialogue.
On May 20, 2021 students of graduate programs International Communication and Integrated Advertising Communication and doctoral students from the School of Education engaged the graduate students from the Division of Mass Communication in an insightful and robust conversation about the future of education. Samuel Dieudonne, ICM, Claren Kaufhold, ICM, Kadijah B. Salawudeen, ICM, James Wheatley, ICM, Taryn Smith, ICM, Meghan Marin Ruelas, IAC, Pamela V. Eatman-Skinner, Gustavo Loor, and Kevin Scanlon (School of Education).
As death and despair assail us where do we find comfort? Tagore, our poet sage, reminds us that “Death is not extinguishing the light; it is only putting out the lamp because the dawn has come.”
At this moment of the pandemic, death has lost its grace, meaning and dignity amid the abstraction of statistics.
Dom Moraes in his Absences yelps with anguish
Smear out the last star. No lights from the islands Or hills. In the great square The prolonged vowel of silence Makes itself plainly heard Round the ghost of a headland Clouds, leaves, shreds of bird Eddy, hindering the wind.
The unnecessary and avoidable death and despair our people are facing is benign neglect the governance hoisted on the people caught trying to eke out a living and to stay alive. With pain and misery, we often find ourselves broken and crippled. There is a sense of incompleteness; but then, the longing remains. And Tagore would call us to ponder:
The song that I came to sing remains unsung to this day.
I have spent my days in stringing and in unstringing my instrument.
The time has not come true, the words have not been rightly set;
only there is the agony of wishing in my heart.
The struggle to make meaning is daunting, while we are focused on survival, masks, sanitizers, quarantined life and emptiness that surrounds our existence.
Pablo Neruda, a Chilean poet and diplomat (1904-1973) has a poetic way to speak to our desolate hearts in his A Song Of Despair
The memory of you emerges from the night around me.
The river mingles its stubborn lament with the sea.
Deserted like the wharves at dawn.
It is the hour of departure, oh deserted one!
Cold flower heads are raining over my heart.
Oh pit of debris, fierce cave of the shipwrecked.
In you the wars and the flights accumulated.
From you the wings of the song birds rose.
You swallowed everything, like distance.
Like the sea, like time. In you everything sank!
It was the happy hour of assault and the kiss.
The hour of the spell that blazed like a lighthouse.
Pilot’s dread, fury of blind driver,
turbulent drunkenness of love, in you everything sank!
In the childhood of mist my soul, winged and wounded.
Lost discoverer, in you everything sank!
You girdled sorrow, you clung to desire,
sadness stunned you, in you everything sank!
I made the wall of shadow draw back,
beyond desire and act, I walked on.
While caught in the vortex of death and despair, it is good to be awakened by the Tagore’s sublime prayer:
This is my prayer to thee, my lord—strike, strike at the root of penury in my heart.
Give me the strength lightly to bear my joys and sorrows.
Give me the strength to make my love fruitful in service.
Give me the strength never to disown the poor or bend my knees before insolent might.
Give me the strength to raise my mind high above daily trifles.
And give me the strength to surrender my strength to thy will and love.
Melissa Labonte, Fordham University, NY // Paul Levinson, Fordham University, NY // Paivi Oinonen, Aalto University, Finland
Fr. Dennis Holtschneider, CM,University, Association of Catholic, USA // Chantal Line Carpentier Chief, UNCTAD, New York Office // Yvonne Pratt-Johnson, St. John’s University, NY
The existing order of higher education has been up-ended by COVID-19. This experience provides an opportunity for all stakeholders of the educational process to reevaluate and reshape this order in a way that is more equitable, inclusive, accessible, affordable, and valuable.
Innovation, technology, and the digital divide has moved from the margins to the center of our education systems, and there is an opportunity to identify new strategies and pedagogies, which will help our youth not only obtain the education that they need but the one that they deserve and that prepares them for our changing times.
Now is the time to reimagine how higher education can emerge stronger from this global crisis than ever before and propose a path for capitalizing on education’s newfound support in virtually every community across the globe. It is a moment in history to understand the central role of education in the economic, social, and political prosperity and stability of nations.
Whether you like to listen to some Lo-fi beats while you study or some classical tunes while you cook dinner, music is undoubtedly an element of our everyday lives. Similar to how music has an integral role in our lives, we, as consumers, also play a powerful role in the success of the music industry. In March 2021, we got the opportunity to speak to Kadijat Salawudeen, in our Digital Communities class at Northwestern University in Qatar taught by Dr. Minna Aslama Horowitz. She is a second-year graduate student studying International Communications at St. John’s University in Queens, New York. Currently, she works on the PR and Marketing teams at °1824, a vertical within Universal Music Group. She is also a freelancer with She Is The Music as part of the communications committee. Through this virtual discussion, we were able to gain insight into the music industry. Some of the topics which we discussed included, understanding what it takes to be part of it, the role of fans and anti-fans engagement, and the changes that needed to be made in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Five years ago, Pope Francis changed the global conversation and directed our attention to our Common Home: the planet earth. The hard, painful and imminent consequences of climate change cannot be ignored. Laudato Si has become a transformative encyclical, which has grabbed the attention and the imagination of people across the world, and particularly of younger people. The global conversation focused on the impact of Laudato Si on different sectors in different parts of the world.
His Eminence Cardinal Turkson, Prefect of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development discussed the ongoing efforts of the Dicastery to keep Laudato Si front and center of public policy making across various sectors by engaging the principals of these sectors. Mr. Satya Tripathi, Asst. Secretary General of UNEP, New York Office, emphasized “action-oriented” work of the United Nations to accelerate the climate related policies. Mr. Marco Mari, President of Green Building Council, Italy, detailed how the engineering work of the Council has taken an aggressive lead to build and refurbish exiting building and also promoting sustainable cities.
Presenters Dr. Juan Chebly, World Food Program, Dr. Luca Rosi, Istituto Superiore di Sanita, Italy, Friar Joseph Blay, Climate Justice Activist, Ghana, Adv. Monica Mhatre, Waste Management Activist, India, Ms. Cristina Parenti, Mechanical Engineer for Sustainable Development, Italy, Mr. Edmund Klimek, Architect for Sustainable Development, USA, Ms. Julia Theilen, Digital and Strategic Communication Specialist, Germany, Ms. Natalia Guendel Bueno, Graduate Student of International Communication, St. John’s University, NY, focused on their respective sectors and regions.
Commemorating the 700th death remembrance of the beatific poet Dante Alighieri called for an engagement with is trans-centennial pupils. Toni Morrison, the noble soul achieving immortality, engaged Dante with vehemence and sublime subtlety. Dr. Kathleen Marks, an unfathomable Dante-Morrison savant, unpacked the richly embroidered subtleties of this sublime cerebral engagement. The eminent Dr. Annalisa Sacca, a distinguished poet herself, who entrenched herself early in life at Liceo Classico in Dante, discovered in Morrison’s Paradise a symbiotic soul with Dante. Dr. Florence Russo, a Dante connoisseur, took the audience to the Infernal Dante-journey rung by rung of the canto. Dr. Luca Iandoli, an Engineer, and Dr. Giuseppe Zollo, an Architect, both enchanted by Dante’s poetic mathematics, exposed Dante’s trans-national soul, mind and heart connecting fundamental innovations of Arab numerals and the zero invented by the Indian mathematicians and the Fibonacci’s Abacus – a testament to intellectual engagement in an open and interconnected world.