Friday, March 16, 2012

Journal Entry #26 - 3/16/12

Watching this 26 minute video from the "7 Billion Others" project website really made me think a lot about people. I watched the video because I wanted to see and hear more about how normal, everyday people think and believe about God. I've been doing so much reading lately, and a lot of my sources have been printed sources. However, focusing only on what is printed about his topic - attitudes toward religion, and it positively or negatively affects people's lives - does have a strong selection bias. Only the inteligencia puts their thoughts to print. What about the old man next door, the woman in South Sudan, the young man from China? Well, the young man in China might have a blog, but I don't think the old man will (unless he's an outlier, haha). While I am sure these people think deeply about religion and their belief in God, rarely do we get to hear it. I suppose there's not much of a demand for that kind of material, and only organizations like the Goodplanet Foundation that create projects like 7 Billion others actually provide it. That being said, it was remarkable to watch the movie because the voice of the person asking the question is never heard. The camera is often placed so close to the face of the person, and if feels like they are speaking right to you.

I'm the kind of person who likes--too much--to interject, to ask additional questions, to clarify certain points, and to direct a train of thought. I know that I cannot do that while I'm in London interviewing people about how they feel about religion and how it affects them and society, and how increasing secularization might be affecting them, for good or for worse. Religion is a very sensitive topic, with strong feelings and fervent beliefs. I will have to learn to listen more. I'll have to become good at those silent prompts and repeating what others say instead of trying to direct them a certain way. The results are more natural that way, I think; I imagine the opinion-coloring influence that I might have, as an interviewer, on their responses will be lessened if can just hear each person out.

1 comment:

  1. I love the 7 billion others videos, seeing what people all over the world and in all different languages have to say about these different topics is so interesting, glad you used it.