Reflection on reflections – Journal #12

In this week’s class we read out our reflections of the article (I posted mine in the last blog post). So I will mention a couple of things that stuck with me from my classmates’ reflections. I liked how Mona emphasized how destructive monetary power could be in that it makes developing countries very dependent of developed countries and also makes them vulnerable and under their control. She then suggested that developing countries should have a more monetary related power but not necessarily with money if it’s not there; it could be with manpower, resources and information.

I also liked how Forkan related the developed countries’ exertion of power on developing countries. She gave the example of what happened with Egypt when a developed country tried to reform our Arabic and Islamic curriculum to exclude the jihad-related verses from the Quranic verses taught in schools. This was an interesting revelation for me because I didn’t know about this before and I found this connection very interesting.

I liked how Salma brought in Milgrim’s work saying that “the psychological mechanism that links individual action to political purpose (it is) the dispositional cement that binds men to systems of authority.” (p.3)

Another point I want to add to my reflection (which I was not able to because of word limit) is how Cossa’s article relates to Freire’s ideology on the empowerment of the oppressed. The continuous emphasis in the paper on how developing countries should take control over their affairs and gain power through doing so, is an empowering thought that relates to Freire’s notion of the oppressed needing to realize and be conscious of their condition in order to be able to make it better. Freire also argues that the oppressors need to teach the oppressed not only how to realize their condition but also how to make it better, which is an overarching theme in Cossa’s paper when he offers solutions to the developing countries to be in power. Although Cossa might not agree with this connection, or in other words, had not intended it to be such, but I found an indirect relationship between the two ideologies. Upon discussing this reflection point with the professor in this class, he said he hadn’t thought of it like that but did not overtly dismiss or disagree with the connection; on the contrary, he said it was a good insight.

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