Predeparture: June 3, 2010

By: Caroline Fish

A sixteen-month-old, strawberry-blond boy with a fat diaper, eager running legs, t-shirt and dimpled smile is tearing around my house today. My nephew: a source of endless bubbling, unadulterated joy and enthusiasm; he leaves no cupboard intact, no toy in its place. The world is his oyster.

This child dashes chuckling into every possibility, and every day becomes a creative feast.

Such purely headlong abandon and delight inspires me, yet for the amount of time I have spent planning, discussing, and writing the about my upcoming summer experience, it would seem that I cannot claim to be emulating Sabun my giggling, scampering nephew as I hop on a plane in a few days to Europe.

It would seem that I have been carefully ambitious in designing a neat ten-week program, rather than recklessly tearing out to discover the world.

Indeed, the program is as follows: an <a href="http://ohre.unc viagra pour” target=”_blank”>IRB-approved ethnography project, for which I wrote a six-page consent form and ten thousand recruitment documents into two languages, French and English, in order to organize myself for interviews with forty to sixty women’s rights activists across four European countries: Iceland, the Netherlands, France, and Turkey. From these interviews, I will be writing story-portraits of each woman, transcribing the interviews and preparing the research results for the Carolina Women’s Center and publication. I hope to hear the subjective experience of each individual, how they evaluate their country’s progress Beat toward gender equality, how they feel empowered, and what drew them into the work they do. The goal is to build a more comprehensive understanding of how women’s rights are being approached on wholesale jerseys a world scale. From documentarians to professors to politicians, I have a packed agenda.

But I will let you in on a secret: despite the intimidating preparatory stages of my trip, I still feel like a gleaming, laughing kid who’s really just off to get into the cupboards.

Though, this is a big deal. I have been given the opportunity of a lifetime by my University. They offered to call me an Eve Marie Carson Scholar and place me in a position of honoring a legacy of life, joy, and excellence. So I’ve dreamt my hardest, imagined the greatest possibilities for myself; and I’m hoping the deepest hope that I will make a difference.

Still, I feel like a bright-eyed youngster. I am relishing butterfly thrills of excitement; I am dallying around the Internet learning Icelandic swear words (which I can’t pronounce anyway); I am whining with cyber impatience and giving into restlessness as I wait for the moment the airplane is lifting off toward Europe; I am plummeting, chuckling, into this possibility, for it is my creative feast.

Fun facts:

Reykjavik, Iceland is a capital city considered nearly free from pollution (that is, minus the Eyjafjallajokull volcano).

Iceland boasts the most number of tractors per capita of land.

Iceland stands among Norway, Finland, and Sweden as the country with the smallest equality gap between men and women, as rated by the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index.

The Dutch are statistically the tallest people in the world.

There are 16 million bicycles in the Netherlands, enough for every person living there to have one.

Netherlands has the highest museum density in the world.

A number of words in the English Language have origins in French, including the word ‘chauvinism,’ which comes from Nicola Chauvin, a Frenchman in Napoleon’s army.

France consistently attracts more tourists per year than it has inhabitants.

It was Turkey that introduced coffee to Europe.

The first church ever built by man is in Turkey.

Turkey keeps company with Iran, Pakistan, and Yemen as the country with the largest equality gap between men and women.

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