Category: International Eye

Parasite, or The Cozy Relationship Between the West and Korean Elites

AS AN INTERNATIONAL student from Korea, I had an extremely uncanny experience watching Bong Joon-ho’s award winning film Parasite (2019). Set in Seoul, South Korea, the film begins by depicting the daily struggles of the Kims, a low-income family that lives in basement apartments. Ki-woo, the college-aged son of the family, lands the opportunity to tutor a student from the affluent Park family. One by one, all of the Kims find cunning ways to get employed by the Parks and test the limits of how much the rich family can be exploited. Built-up tension and pressure to keep the fraud hidden culminate in an ending that captures the quintessence of class warfare. 

Continue reading “Parasite, or The Cozy Relationship Between the West and Korean Elites”

How Climate Change Will Change Us

DERISIVELY KNOWN as “Bushmen,” the San people of South Africa suffered the fate of many other hunter-gatherer communities. First threatened by African farmers with a more settled way of life, San society was dealt its mortal blow by the entry of Europeans. Following their arrival in Cape Town in 1652, the Dutch treated the indigenous people of South Africa as vermin—massacring the San in the thousands and cowing them into submission. Little evidence was left of their culture, though the cave art that adorns rocks across Southern Africa gives us a momentary glance into their worldview.

Continue reading “How Climate Change Will Change Us”

As the World Berns: Six International Perspectives on Bernie

IN AMERICAN politics, Bernie is something of  an anomaly: a socialist above the age of thirty. In other parts of the world, politicians like Bernie fall closer to the political center—and, in a few notable cases, surprisingly far from the political center. So we asked the Sphere’s international writers (and Jacob Kuppermann) to answer the question, “Where would Bernie fall on the political spectrum of [Country X]?”

These are their responses.

Continue reading “As the World Berns: Six International Perspectives on Bernie”

The European Union: A Hamilton Musical Redux? Doubtful

I doubt anyone will ever write a rap musical about the European Union – the idea of overpaid technocrats engaging in rap battles about banana regulations is somehow not very appealing. But there is more to this story than meets the eye. The EU is a tale of post-war quixotic dreams, and the corruption of these ideals by greed, arrogance, and unaccountability.

Continue reading “The European Union: A Hamilton Musical Redux? Doubtful”