Sunday, February 24, 2008

linfen connections

i have not been posting for quite a while. i have been busy hosting a visiting scholar from Shanxi Teacher's University in China. we are working on a couple of papers together that analyze recent developments in the content of Chinese language arts textbooks that are used in China. we are considering themes such as the tensions between globalization and traditional culture. yx is interested in examining the nature of humanistic education in contemporary China and whether or not the socialization that is occurring through the chinese language arts curriculum is suited to the needs of the current global age. [speaking of humanism what is it anyway? i have been trying to arrive a definition. yx says that the word humanistic comes up regularly in policy discourse of all types in contemporary China. there was an interesting little post on Baha'i Views recently about humanism]

while yx is here i have been eating lots of wonderful food. yx is a a wonderful cook.

Items on the menu have included jia jiang mian--noodles with sauce

and egg and leek (jiu cai) dumplings

we have also been making sure yx gets her fill of some American favorites...

we were given a fabulous opportunity in the form of an invitation to a Sunday service at the Christ Church in New Brunswick where the minister is a woman and all the food for the coffee hour was prepared by the men! the congregation was notable in its diversity also and in the extent to which the fostering of a critical awareness of social injustice was an important part of the program.

we made some lovely new friends and yx was impressed by their high ideals and "humanistic spirit." both of these two radiant souls have given up lucrative prestigious positions in industry and academic service to become teachers in urban areas feeling that this was the way they could be of the most service to humanity. what an inspiration.

aforementioned radiant souls introduced me to some real tea, having grown up drinking british tea themselves--one in Nigeria and one in England. i have been suffering along with lipton all this while and what i really have needed all along was a decent british blend. i couldn't find pg tips at my local stop and shop

but a box of tetley's british blend is serving me just fine until i can it somewhere else.

we went for a walk around the Princeton university campus on Friday afternoon

including a stop in their exquisite chapel where rehearsals were being held for an event called Organic Chants so we were immersed in angelic sounds.


Blogger Linda Margaret said...

The food looks delicious. I lived in Asia for a bit and I love the jia jiang noodles.

7:38 PM, February 24, 2008  
Blogger Celeste said...

mmm, makes me hungry for real Chinese food and friends!!

Sounds like you're having a wonderful time, blending the intellectual pursuits with plenty of fun recreation. Excellent! It's great to read you again. ^_^

8:34 AM, February 26, 2008  
Blogger iguana said...

Hi, what a great post! I am craving some of the food you have had the fortune of eating for the occcasion of your visiting friend from Linfen!

I sent you 3 emails, and I suppose they never got to you... :(. My email is: and would love to make direct contact with you!

I am in the States and haven't had access to the Internet for almost 2 weeks, torture!

11:55 PM, February 26, 2008  

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