Posts Tagged ‘Cairo’

Obama and his Audience

June 6, 2009

There can be many responses to the Cairo speech each depending on how one wished to incorporate it in one’s agenda for the future.

This is most obvious in the realm of politics: some want to see it as a hopeful point of departure and do not wish to be critical; others see in it the need to support Obama in his struggle with his domestic constituency that restrains his genuine aspirations; yet others read it as a reiteration of the Bush policy couched in more sophisticated words. Depending on the agenda some wish to emphasize the positives, others the negatives.

This blog is not about politics. Our focus is pedagogy and analysis that serves the interest of pedagogy. We often choose political themes to illustrate pedagogical points simply because students engage readily with issues that are topical and of wider significance. (more…)

Obama in Cairo: Ten Weak Points

June 5, 2009

I did not watch President Obama’s address in Cairo because I did not wish to be influenced by his obvious oratorical skills. But I have the speech in cold print and would like to highlight ten weak points from the perspective of a non-Western audience in order to start a discussion on its wider implications.

The reason for this approach is that every audience brings with it a different baggage of history, a different template for interpretation, a different metric of credibility, and a different set of expectations. Thus the reaction of an American audience is likely to be quite different from that of a non-Western audience especially one that has been at the receiving end of America’s pursuits of its national interests. (more…)


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