INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS AND RECLAIMING GLOBALISATION

By Laura Potts

More than 43 000 people come every year from overseas to study in the UK; a vast spectrum of people with differing backgrounds, cultures and interests/abilities. An international student’s experience of learning abroad goes further than just their degree. They encounter a different way of life that may enrich and enhance their own. They each bring with them a unique set of capacities, a wealth of ideas and innovative potential solutions that create a stimulating multicultural academic environment for all. But adapting in this way is often difficult, as I’ve learned recently speaking to international students at my university.

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LICENCE TO HATE: POST-BREXIT BRITAIN

by Faizal Nor Izham

Content warnings: xenophobia, racism, racial slurs

You’d think that after more than three decades of multiculturalism in the UK, racism should have, more or less, become a thing of the past. Yet bigotry has decided to rear its ugly head once more after the recent EU referendum, with many of those who voted for Brexit, in particular those from a working class background, feeling the result has given them the right, and indeed social acceptance, to begin verbally chasing out migrants, in some kind of vague collective bid to “get [their] country back”.

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A EUROPEAN LIFE

by Kelvin Smith

I was born shortly after the end of the Second World War in a nursing home that overlooked the Mersey, open to the world, “on the stream of trade” as my school song had it.

At primary school we drew Spitfires and Hurricanes in aerial dogfights with Junkers and Messerschmitts. There were bomb-sites in the towns and cities and there were Emergency Water Storage Tanks (marked EWS) everywhere. My first non-English words were Hände hoch and Achtung, closely followed by Frère Jacques. My parents had few foreign friends, although a Dutchman, a fellow chemist, had stayed with them in the early 1940s and he returned home with a broad Lancashire accent. “Reet bloody champion”, he would say.Continue Reading

RODRIGO DUTERTE: PRO LGBT, PROLETARIAT DICTATORSHIP

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by Julian Ignacio Canlas

‘I don’t care if I go to hell as long as the people I serve will live in paradise.’
Rodrigo Duterte

Disclaimer: mentions rape

Rodrigo Duterte’s personal politics is defined by a confusing blend of liberal and authoritarian beliefs. His politics have certainly elicited a wide variety of reactions, capturing the imagination of even the Western media outlets through racist depictions of international politics — or not. Even more varied and stranger are his supporters, ranging from religious leaders to the LGBT community, to sex workers and farmers. So how exactly did the new president of the Philippines, dubbed ‘The Punisher’, manage to enthrall the masses?

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NEVER CALL ME AN OREO

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by Emmanuel Agu

Often within BME communities the term “Acting white” coupled with pejoratives i.e “bounty/coconut/” are exchanged as a way to insult and demean one another- and for those people of color inhabiting predominantly white environments we find- oddly these are given often as mere observations and to some individuals, a thinly veiled compliment. Personal and shared experiences through lower schooling and higher education would have led me to believe that ‘acting white’ can be seen as a variety of things:

  • Speaking an English vernacular that isn’t observed in a vast majority of grime music videos.
  • Refusing to wear boot cut jeans and timberlands on non-school uniform day.
  • A passion for singer/songwriters and metal core ( odd juxtaposition but, forgive me)
  • A close circle of predominantly white friends.

This mindset however is problematic and regressive and for PoC to use on each other is self-deprecating. By choosing to use these insults we encourage and foster a space for internalized racism within our respective communities, and further promote colonialist ideals within society as a whole.

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THE SLOW DEATH OF UK’S MULTICULTURALISM?

by Faizal Nor Izham

Following the BBC Challengers’ Election Debate sans David Cameron, it appears the UK’s hotly-contested immigration issue could finally be put to rest after May 7.

In his speech, Ed Miliband proposed setting up a task force that would enforce heavier fines on firms which exploit low-paid workers and undermine the minimum wage. On the other hand, the Lib-Dems have outlined plans to boost local apprenticeships while the Tories pledged to make pension’s campaigner Ros Altmann a minister for consumer protection.

This follows a Telegraph report last month that the UK may continue to accept 300,000 more immigrants over the next five years, despite pledges by David Cameron to reduce 2014’s net migration of 298,000 to ‘tens of thousands’.

While pragmatic solutions are most welcome, the aftermath of the constant blame on immigrants would surely have taken its toll by now. When things start to get tough, they’re usually the first to be blamed. Depressed wages? Blame it on the immigrants. Rise in crime? Immigrants. Not enough housing? Again, immigrants. Yet structural problems continue to persist because enough not is being done to address them.Continue Reading