Matthew – I thought that the discussion with Erik was really thoughtful and powerful. I thought that he has amazing insights into South Africa, and that he had both the objectivity of a foreign observer, but also the close and personal relationship and understanding of the people and government of South Africa that is really unique for a foreigner to possess. I think that his insights were really powerful because they were paradoxical in the way that they both broadened my worldview by learning about a country that is so different than my own, however it also greatly deepened my understanding of my own country and the conflicts that we have.
Jacob – I think that it was really interesting, and I really liked the questions that people asked. It seemed like people had really thought them through and the responses were really cool to hear about. I also hope that we will be able to do something like this again, I would want to ask him more questions about the people that live there and what the school systems look like. I also hope that he continues to update the blog with pictures so I can get a better idea of what everything looks like.
Cassis – The discussion with Erik yesterday was good. People had pretty good questions, especially Jay and Matt. Their questions were very well thought out and there was no simple answer to them, and they were good discussion questions because of that. They made me think a lot about not only South Africa, but also the United States. I think that it is important that we acknowledge both the differences and similarities between those two countries, not only in present day but also in their history. Looking at a country with similar history through ours lets us be more critical of those actions (because we won’t have any bias towards that other country). However, I think we could have had a better discussion if we had prepared questions beforehand so we would have had more time to think them out. Overall, I am very glad we got to talk to Erik because it was a unique way to learn about South Africa that actually involved us.
Jack – I felt like the discussion was a good discussion and that there were a lot of good questions asked and Erik gave good answers. I think some of the better answers came from the more generic or insightful questions and I think that it was cool to hear about South Africa. I would have liked to ask about Hillbrow and Tiragalong because those are the places we are learning about, but I couldn’t think of a good question to ask and with all the other great questions being asked I felt like the time was better spent listening to and learning from the questions others were asking. Overall I think that it was a great discussion and a great experience to learn about present South Africa from somebody who lives in South Africa.
Jesus – I thought that the discussion went well, everyone had very good questions and I think I learned a lot from the discussion. I think that most questions were very thought provoking questions and Erik had really good answers. I also liked the simple questions like Sydney asked because it really surprised me when he said that it snowed over there. It’s not every day that you get to learn about a new place from another part of the world and I think that this was a good learning experience that I hope to do again.
Seyi – I believe that the discussion we had with the guest speaker went very well and we posed a lot of interesting questions and get helpful responses that gave us a broader aspect on life in South Africa. We also learn about certain areas of topics that we were not at all sure of like the relationships between certain areas in South Africa. I also think that if we came to class with more prepared questions that the discussion would have been 2 xs better. While we were receiving these answers I noticed there were so many things that we did not know about South Africa. And now that we are done with the talk there are so much knowledge that we now have.
Kendal – I really enjoyed listening to all he had to say about South Africa and his experience there. Although I couldn’t think of any good questions to ask, I really enjoyed hearing all the really good questions my classmates had to ask. I’m really glad at Sydney asked about the weather, because I grew up with the stereotype that all of Africa was warm, and when he talked about winters and the different types of weather, it made me think and reflect on the stereotypes I had about the weather and geography of Africa as a continent. It made me look at other things that I hadn’t thought about, and it was very interesting. I am glad I was able to hear Eric’s perspective