World Fest Brings the Best

March will be a month with global influence at Parkside as World Fest kicks off with some extraordinary events. According to the pamphlet distributed by student activities there will be an immense amount of activity as Parkside kicks off World Fest. From March first to March fifth there will be a display case in the library that focuses on the arrival of immigrants from 1837 up until the present day. “The Opening Flag Ceremony” will be held on March first at noon in Main Place. The ceremony will be followed by a performance from the Senegal Dance Troupe Ak Jam. At two P.M. on March first there will be a presentation in the Oak Room entitled “The Crisis of Social Democracy in Europe.”

In this presentation professor Jonathan Olsen who is an associate professor of Political Science will give an overview of the current condition of the social democratic and center- left parties currently in Europe. The parties had found a second wind in the 1990’s through their implementation of “market liberalism” coupled with the combination of “social justice” themes. In more recent years these parties have fallen into a trap which does not allow them to effectively place themselves between center- right parties and political challengers of the far left wing. Jonathan plans on discussing all of these issues.

March first also brings Parkside “German Cooking with Jan Holste in which students will learn how to make Bratapfel which is a desert made from apples that are baked in the oven and sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon.

On March second World Fest continues and starts out with a presentation on “Fair Trade and Economic Justice” in the Spruce Room. This will be presented by Connie Molbeck from the Hopes Center of Racine. At Noon the Fest moves to Main Place with the “Ballet Folklorika Nacional of Milwaukee. According to Student Activities the group is an, “. . . innovative, theatrical body of dancers committed to the preservation of one of the richest artistic manifestations of tradition and culture in Mexico.” The group performances are said to bring, “tradition, art culture, and history to all its audiences.” They perform in colorful costumes and bring depictions of the diverse culture of Mexico as well as the folklore surrounding it.

If you happen to be on the other side of the campus World Fest has something for you as well. There is an event in the Hickory Room at noon entitled “China’s Urban Development.The presentation is centered around the fact that China is in its largest and most crucial phase of urbanization. About 270 million people now live in urban ares in China which represents thirty- six percent of the population. It is projected that this figure will reach sixty percent of the population by 2015. This will be presented by Dr. Xun (George) Wang.

At two P.M there will be a presentation exploring the remarkable imagery surrounding the Day of the Dead holiday whichn will be held in the Poplar Room. The official name of the holiday is El Dia de los Muertos and the imagery will be presented by Ndia Tscherny. At four P.M. on March second “World Music: The Geography, Politics, and Ethics of Sound” will be held in the Hickory Room with panelists Simon Adetona Akindes, Nathan Godley, and Dillep Karanth. “Latin Dancing with Latinos Unidos” will close out the night at seven P.M. in the Den. They will teach you how to Merengue, Salsa, and Bachata dance.

From ten A.M. to two P.M. the “World Bazaar 2010” will be held in Main Place. The performance will feature a performance from Rhythm in the Round from ten to eleven thirty and another performance by Viata Romaneasca at noon. At one P.M. there will be a presentation that focuses on the Movie Avatar entitled “Avatar and the Secret Life of Commodities.” It will focus on questions pertaining to the temporary ban on Avatar in China and the true meaning of the blockbuster film.This discussion will be led by professor Farida Khan. At three P.M. in the Poplar Room there will be a presentation entitled “Lisu Getting Married: How the End of Opium Economy Changes Young People’s Marriage Choices, Norhtern Thailand.” This discussion focuses on the changes from the last generation to the current one in Thailand and how their lack of marketable crops has left them unable to support or marry the partner of their choice. This will be presented by Kathleen Gillogly and will focus on the historical ideas about and presence of marriage.

To end the night the Parkside Conema will screen the foreign film “Encounters at the End of the World.” This will be held at eight P.M. and covers Werner Herzog’s travels to the Antarctic community of McMurdo Station which just happens to be the headquarters of the National Science Foundation. This film examines both human nature and the natural environment and you can learn more about it at

World Fest continues on March fourth and kicks off with “Classic Middle Eastern Dance by Sadira” at noon in Main Place. At one P.M. there is a presentation in the Oak Room entitled “Zapatistas Dispatches” which covers Parkside students who spend an alternative spring break working with Zapatista communities in Chiapas, Mexico. This presentation will explain the Zapatista movement and will explore the views of these students as well.

At four P.M. in the Walnut Room “Comparative Creation Stories and Their Implications” will be held. This will be a panel discussion that pertains to the comparisons and contrasts of three separate creation stories. These stories are those of the Maya, Aztec, and the Judeo- Christian creation stories. The cultural significance of all three will be examined.

On March fifth there will be a presentation at noon entitled “Japanese Vending Machines: Yes, they really do sell beer.” The presentation will examine the history of Japanese vending machines, the industry, and the affiliation they have with breweries around the nation. This will be presented by Dr. Jeffrey Alexander. The final event of World Fest will be the “4th Annual World Cuisine Dinner” in the University Ballroom at seven P.M.There will be dancers from around the world including the Hale-o-Malo dancers from New Zealand and the Renacer Boliviano Dance Troupe. There will be a variety of foods from around the world and tickets are $10.00 for students with their I.D. and $20 for nonstudent adults. World Fest offers an immense opportunity for everyone to explore the issues, traditions, and the ideas of other cultures.

Story by Jake Halverson

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