Majority versus minority: Governmentality and Muslims in Sweden Roald

Yuyuan Zhang

This is my notes about Muslims in Sweden, and of of my reading book, although it about Sweden, and some very similar with Norway.

Scandinavia and the Equitable Society

Scandinavian countries have a good track record of gender equality, openness to sexual orientation and same­sex marriage, and a flat social stratification, whereby education is often free, and where those out of work for redundancy, disability and retirement are taken care of by state­funded welfare. In addition, the Scandinavian countries are well known for being proactive in issues of the environment and economic sustainability. They are frequently referred to as holding a feminist ethic, for example in relation to maternal leave and child­care, and regularly appear at the top of the global indexes on quality of life. A European narrative of Scandinavia demarcates them as liberal, free and equal. 北欧国家性别的平等开放,良好的福利,女权主义在北欧国家表现明显。

An alternative interpretation of Scandinavian success, however, would locate these narratives of progress as simply markers of the successful application of neoliberal policies in small, nationally and ethnically cohesive contexts. This might be referred to, for example, as a form of ‘obligated freedom’: accepted so long as it is keeping with those practices of the self that best support the state and the economy. Foucault (2003, 2008) would have termed this a form of bio­political ‘governmentality’, whereby apparatus of the state (arts, politics, education, media) are distilled and distributed, and create subject positions that people come to live through and define themselves by. Indeed, it can be argued that in so­called ‘liberal societies’, the bio­politics of the managed population make radical political resistance much more difficult to enact, because equality is already assumed (but perhaps not questioned) by the people. 斯堪的纳维亚的成功,自由社会,义务自由

Beneath the surface of liberalism in Scandinavian countries is, then, a managed form of freedom and self­expression. Or, put another way, if Scandinavian countries are really that liberal: how can they produce instances such as those we saw in Norway in 2011, when Anders Breivik killed over 70 people in the name of far­right anti­Semitic racism? How is it that, in Scandinavian feminism, we see the denigration and social abjection of those women who are often marked as ‘foreign’ and therefore ‘dirty’ and ‘unclean’? How do right wing political parties manage to proliferate in Scandinavian parliaments with their anti­immigration policies? How much does language play a part in maintaining racial and ethnic hegemony? How liberal is the ‘equitable society’? 斯堪的纳维亚国家是真正的自由吗?女权主义是真正的存在么,自由怎么成为一个平等的社会。

This project will explore different constructs of equality and liberalism as part of the national identity of Scandinavian countries and in how it presents opportunities for equal education and gender mainstreaming policies, against neoliberalism, anti­immigration, the invisibility of ‘race’, and normalization of whiteness in this context. 探讨不同结构的平等和自由作为斯堪的纳维亚民族识别的一部分,和怎样提供平等的教育机会和性别主流化政策,反对新自由主义,反对移民的,隐形的种族在这个正常的苍白的内容。

  1. Majority versus Minority: Governmentality and Muslims in Sweden

多数党和少数党,政府和穆斯林

The article talk about the Muslim community in view of majority and minority dynamics in Sweden with focus on the values, attitudes, behaviors, and practices of the Swedish majority influence the minority少数 communities and how majority society’s approach to Muslims and Islam influence both the relationship Muslims and the non-Muslims.穆斯林是伊斯兰的派生词,是顺从真主,致力和平的人就是穆斯林人

9.11 whether this A1-qaida attack on US economic and political symbols of power was really a clash between these two civilizations? To analyze this violent event in view of other factors, first, the globalization of the media, and the Arab-speaking families got access to news from the world, as well as to critical political analyses of their own political leadership, and of the relation between the west and the rest, so it seems that this event is because the political rather than civilizational factors. Secondly, conflict between Muslim regions and the secularized west, third reason, the globalization of the western entertainment culture. Muslin consumers in particular have the impression of a western degenerating culture with sex and violence as he main ingredients. Islamist resistance to western cultural.

Case study: Sweden

Main discussed in Sweden but compare with Norway and in Denmark, to talk about how the relationship between the majority non-muslim population and muslim minority communities influences the behavior through two part: the coverage of immigrants in the media, and the Swedish populist party.

Receiving Sweden:

From 1930s, Sweden became a receiving country, and as the first Muslim community. The tartars established the first Islamic congregation in 1948, despite the increased immigration beginning in the 1940s, mid-1970s that a particular attitude towards immigrants was launched, characterized by the words “equality”, “freedom of choice”, and “partnership”. The article

introduces the rights of minorities “to enjoy their own culture, to profess and practice their own religion, or to use their own language”, thus indicating minority rights even in political and social development.

individual task week 2

Yuyuan Zhang

381MC expert interview (relate to the dissertation)

When the children grow up become the adult, at the same time, their parents from adult become the elderly, and they need their children to take care and to accompany. However, in current society, the adults are always busy with their work usually ignore their parents. This situation made their parents feel lonely and lack the sense of security. This interview questions are surrounded by this topic.

Yuan Yao, who is a professor, doctoral supervisor at the university of RenMin university of China, and head of the professional committee of China’s population society. He has two main research directions: 1. Population sociology: lay particular stress on the theory, fertility culture and population history. 2. Old age sociology: mainly focus on aging theory, aging policy, old-age culture, and family. Including studies of <Chinese family pension>, <informal support of theory and prctice>, and <social gerontology>etc.

At the beginning of the interview, the point from his article of <know aging society as soon as possible> is the phenomenon of ageing society, which is the main question of this interview. From his answer, the data shown by him made me shock a lot. So far, number of elderly people aged over 60 in China has been more than two hundred million, take up 14.9% of the population. He also pointed out the proportion was significantly higher than the 10% of the United Nations traditional aging social standards. He predicted that in the next 20 years China would enter the aging peak and average annual increase of 10 million old people.

Additionally, he described the main reasons about the phenomenon from a professional standpoint. Sometimes, some social phenomenon caused the conflict between the elderly and young people, in fact, this is our country population aging reflects in a microscopic in their life. It reflects as the elderly in the population increasing and people’s awareness of rights, resulting in a change of intergenerational relationship between old and young people. In addition, another change caused by the aging society is a series of economic and social problems.

Moreover,we had a great discussion about the theory of ‘economic exchange relations between generation and generation’, which was many scholar focus on. And professor Yao gave his different view: ‘ This is an economic exchange theory, created by YaJun Du(1990), people of different ages in different position in social economic activities, and they create different products, provide different labor, and the demand for social products are also different, so here is the necessity of exchange between generation and generation’.

At the end of the interview, professor Yao indicated that is not a simple moral issue to be good to old people, but a complicated and important issue. It guarantees the elderly’s life, and this special role not only for China’s social development and also for modernization. The most unforgettable answer he gave is about the biggest difference between human and animal. He said that animals and people both had parental fertility to protect their offspring instinct to create conditions for their offspring. For example, some fish larvae do not leave their mother’s mouth until they grew up, during more than one month, their mother cannot eat anything. But when the young fish grow up, they can’t take care of their mother who give the birth to them, and protect them. So, to some extent, I agree with this point, this behavior only human can do. If people who do not take care of their parents, they just like animals.

Many thanks for professor Yao’s time, although the time is restricted, his answers made me know more and have a new look about Chinese aging society. Obviously, aging issue is becoming more and more serious especially for national economy and social stability. Before the coming of aging society, how to deal with this issue is our primary problem. According to the point of professor Yao, I think government need to pay more attention on this problem, and also the public.

Due to the interview was taken in Chinese, maybe I cannot translate very exactly.

Also, I’m a little confused about some theory he mentioned above, but he’s answer still touched me very deep. I’m very lucky to interview him.

Bibliography:

Zgrkkx.com, (2014). 血亲价值论:对中国家庭养老机制的理论探讨_中国人口科学. [online] Available at: http://www.zgrkkx.com/Magazine/Show/?ID=5111 [Accessed 25 Nov. 2014].

China’s Aging Population in the Twenty-first Century How Shall We Respond?. (2001). Chinese Sociology & Anthropology.

Foot, D. (2013). An Older, Wiser World: Some Economic Consequences of Population Aging.Public Policy & Aging Report.

Shen, Y. (2009). Aging of the Population and the Government Responsibility—The Advanced Age Turn of Chinese Population.

week 3 individual task Debate

Yuyuan Zhang

381MC Debate (relate to 305MC)

Current controversies about people eating dog and cat is this normal behavior, and should human eat dog arouses the huge concern in public. This dispute is produced by a particular dog festival in Yu Lin, a city in Guang Xi province in China. The local tradition reportedly began in the 1990s. This festival is a folk spontaneous formation. At the annual summer solstice in June 21st or 22nd, local people according to the traditional history customs began eating dog meat with plenty of lychee. Once hold this festival will over 50000 dogs be killed and also include some cats about 10000. This affect causes a sensation in China. Except China, there are also other country eat dogs, like Indonesia, Korea, Mexico, Philippines, Polynesia, Vietnam and ect. Different people hold the different opinions toward this event.

The phenomenon has leaded to many people strong opposition who from animal protection organizations and who love dogs. They against it, because they think this a very cruel behavior, dog can help human do many special things. Dog is human’s friends. An old lady who against this thing said:” dog is a kind of companion animals, have high IQ, they can communicate with people and also can accompany the old people spend the lonely time, just like me, my son work in other city and sometimes when I feel lonely I can chat with my puppy.” There are too many comments like this to against human eat dog meat. On the other side, people eat dog meat and someone must sell it. This is a not legal trade, when this festival coming, more than 5000 dog will be killed, the volume is not small, and some dogs are old and even sick, if you eat them you maybe get sick from them. They hold the same point that Yulin government have to get the more strict control, because the trading here is illegal, you can not see any supervision here, and also no evidence showing that these dogs belong to the traders. China doesn’t have an animal protection law, many dogs are stolen, abducted. Some experts argue the festival is illegal.

While on the contrary side, people who eat dog, they have their standpoint. People who think this is a normal and right behavior is because they think it is a traditional ceremony and dog’s meat is delicious and have many advantages to human’s body, it can keeps you healthy. It’s really nutritious and flavorful, also it’s not very expensive, even cheaper than beef. They don’t think it is a cruel behavior, they hold the point that if you eat beef, that’s much more cruel than eat dogs. It’s because cows can help you plow fields. Why YuLin people eat dog have the close relate to the local geographical environment, climate conditions, and historical background, it’s not should be blame anyone.

In recent years many media focus on this topic. And also a lot of official media went to YuLin in order to interview the local residents how they view about their own local traditional ceremony – dog festival. One local resident said:” according to Chinese lore, eating dog meat stimulates internal heat, and there is also a superstition that’s the dog meat enable to bring good luck and health.” And other one said:” actually, I like dogs, but at the same time, I’m not against this special ceremony. This is just a traditional behavior, and the ancestors reserved for us, we don’t want to lost it.” Many people who live in YuLin, they sold dogs more than 100 a day and they think they feed dogs for the sake of selling dog meat, it can make more money, cause they have to raise their family.

In response to social concerns, local government in Yu Lin clamed and emphasizes Yu Lin government or any social organization didn’t hold any festival in the summer solstice about eating dog meat with lychees. At present, the Yu Lin government takes the lead of carrying out meat safety rectification work.

This situation happened is because China lacks the system to divide dog and pet. Pet belong to pet, human forbid to eating, particularly stole the pet from other people, and if the local have to keep the traditional ceremony, they should have a large scale area to feed dogs, also need dog quarantine, just like feed pigs, chickens ect. Giving the right and acceptable way to public of selling and eating dog meat.

References

Anon, (2014). [online] Available at: http://world.chinadaily.com.cn/2014-04/16/content_17437291.htm 2014-04-16 [Accessed 25 Nov. 2014].

Anon, (2014). [online] Available at: http://time.com/2891222/china-dog-eating-festival/ [Accessed 25 Nov. 2014].

Bbs.tianya.cn, (2014). 世界上没哪个国家立法禁止吃狗肉(转载)_网罗天下_天涯论坛. [online] Available at: http://bbs.tianya.cn/post-no110-211046-1.shtml [Accessed 25 Nov. 2014].

Guardian, (2014). Chinese city holds dog-meat festival early to avoid animal-rights protests. [online] Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jun/18/chinese-dog-meat-festival-held-early-animal-rights-protests [Accessed 25 Nov. 2014].

week 5 individual task Echoes

Yuyuan Zhang

Matt Cutts shared the change in his life and work after keeping doing the same thing in his general 30 days. In the speech of “Try Something New for 30 Days”, Matt Cutts said his self-confidence grew and his idea shifted from desk-dwelling computer nerd to the kind of guy who bikes to work while he insisted doing more and harder 30-day challenges. Particularly, he even hiked up Mt. Kilimanjaro which was he didn’t dare to think about before the 30-day challenge. At the end of speech, Matt Cutts emphasized again that it was more important to keep doing things we can do than unsustainable things.

The short speech though only have 3 minutes, did affect me a lot when I watched it first time. One year ago, I did my second year in Xi’ an polytechnic university in China. I remembered that I had a deep ideological struggle after watched Matt Cutts’ speech. I felt like I had no any change in my life during the last 20 years, and kept doing the things as many other students doing at university. Actually,I want to study go abroad when I was in senior school, but English was my biggest problem. In last few years, I made a plant of plans to learn English, but lastly I was always fail due to I gave up halfway. Matt Cutts’ experiences gave me the courage to think about it again, and I knew it was the time to do some challenges in my life. Then I decided to force myself to keep learning English every day. I’d love to mention the experience about my last time learning English plan. As Matt Cutts I asked myself keep doing the things I can, such as learning and practicing 30 words, and writing a 100-word composition per day, that was extreme hard at the beginning, but I insisted and finally I passed IELTS with 6 point. Now I have achieved my gold and study in Coventry University. After tasting the savor of success, I know deeply that keeping making some challenges in my life and try these in my next days are so important to form good habits and rich my life. For example, recently, I’m taking photos for myself every day to record my busy final year. I have already took 16 photos in last 16 days with different emotions and different moods. I want to keep this in a few months or even years, and when I look back in the future, it must be very funny.

I was so lucky to have an opportunity to watch the short speech. The question Matt Cutts asked at the end of speech, “what are you waiting for ”, really shocked me a lot. That just likes speaking to me directly and powerfully. I think that is the reason why his speech is deeply impressed in my memory. When I was boring or complain about my life or something, his words remind me to make some changes and try something new in next 30-day.

Bibliography:

Cutts, M. (2014). Try something new for 30 days. [online] Ted.com. Available at: http://www.ted.com/talks/matt_cutts_try_something_new_for_30_days [Accessed 25 Nov. 2014].