C&C announcement, education, Travel writing, Writing

Episode 20: COVID Series Part V: Turning Negatives into Positives

Our last episode in the COVID series is now available!

Dr Ann Wand Wand sits down with Dr Kristin Stasiowski of Kent State University, independent scholar, Dr Mounia Mnouer, and PhD Candidate of the University of Munich, Sohaib Riaz, to discuss how they have rediscovered their passions for family, hobbies, and nature during times of global crisis.

If you’re interested in listening to Dr Stasiowski’s talk (September 19th at 4pm BST) on discovering your talents during times of crisis, sign up to listen live on Patreon by September 18th.

The Show Notes:

Reading suggestions from Dr Mounia Mnouer:

Here is an article in the Atlantic about the power of diaries in the time of the pandemic, and how preserving these diaries as archives is important for future generations:

‘Dear Diary: This Is My Life in Quarantine’: https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2020/08/why-are-people-keeping-coronavirus-diaries/614977/

This is the poem I wrote about my grandmother entitled, ‘A letter to Nanna’ (Spillwords Press): https://spillwords.com/a-letter-to-nanna/

This is a piece that allowed me to reconnect with my Indigeneity after the chats with my family entitled, ‘The resilient Amazigh’: https://themetric.org/articles/the-resilient-amazigh

Reading suggestions from Sohaib Riaz:

Anthropological work on stamp collecting is scant, however this small essay can be a really good starter for anyone interested in anthropology and philately:

‘Reconsidering the Smallest of Artifacts: on the Origins of Philatelic Collecting’ by Paul van der Grijp: https://journals.lib.unb.ca/index.php/MCR/article/view/17983/21979

Reading suggestions from Dr Kristin Stasiowski:

I would recommend ‘Walden’ by Thoreau; ‘A Walk in the Woods’ by Bill Bryson; and ‘American Canopy: Trees, Forests, and the Making of a Nation’ by Eric Rutkow. 

In terms of comparative material when reflecting on Mounia’s discussion of the French colonization of Morocco, I was reminded of Mazza Mengiste’s ‘The Shadow King’ about Italy’s war in Ethiopia: https://www.npr.org/2019/09/25/763907282/the-shadow-king-is-a-gorgeous-meditation-on-memory-war-and-violence 

Sohaib’s focus on stamp collecting reminded me of an article I read this year about Primo Levi and how stamps were used in a remembrance project with regard to the Holocaust called ‘Remembrance through Stamps — A Reminder and Our Promise’: https://stamps.org/news/c/news/cat/local/post/remembrance-through-stamps-a-reminder-and-our-promise

C&C announcement, education, Health, history, language, Parenting, Travel, Travel writing, Writing

Dr Mounia Mnouer on ‘Turning Negatives into Positives’

Picture_Mnouer

Our next guest speaker for episode 20 on ‘Turning Negatives into Postives’ features independent scholar, Dr Mounia Mnouer, who will be talking about rediscovering her family’s history during the colonization of Morocco.
*******
I am an Indigenous, Muslim North African, specifically from Morocco. I reside in Arizona, in a beautiful mountain town north of the state. I was a faculty member teaching Arabic and cross-cultural understanding content, but was recently laid off due to Covid-19 budget cuts. Living away from my family, especially during a pandemic can be very taxing. So, I decided to call my parents more often, and ask them to share stories growing up in colonial Morocco, and stories about their parents. Writing down these memories of my parents gave me a sense of resilience, and strength. I also found writing poetry and essays about my heritage as an Indigenous (Amazigh) woman very empowering. I decided to take time to relax, and practice gratitude through journaling. I am also taking part in reading/conversation groups about decoloniality, and am rethinking higher education in order to take action for social justice, inclusion, and commitment to diversity in higher education spaces. All of these activities have been helping me get through Covid-19 times.