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Other America / Другая Америка - crimeanelf
Other America / Другая Америка
I think, its time for me talking about America. Пожалуй, пора мне порассказывать об Америке.

No, not the one all foreigners know about (or even visited). Нет, не о той, о которой все знают (а то и гостили).

But rather the Other America. Invisible from outside and rarely seen by tourists and guests. О Другой Америке. Незаметной со стороны и почти не замечаемой туристами и гостями.

In Other America there live a normal people. Neither fat, nor skinny. Neither stupid, nor smart. Same as in any other place. В Другой Америке живут обычные люди. Не толстые, не тонкие. Не умные, не глупые. Такие же, как мы.

In Other America birch trees grow(1) and bird cherries bloom. В Другой Америке растут берёзы и цветёт черёмуха. .

Cabmen swear like cabmen.(2) Извозчики бранятся как извозчики. .

Girls run around street markets on high heels, with tiny pretty purses and a whole bunch of plastic bags.(3) Девушки бегают по базарам на каблучках, с модельными сумочками и кучей пластиковых пакетов. .

Buckwheat, farina and rosehips are sold by weight.(4) На развес продают гречку, манку и плоды шиповника. .

It is hard not to be a white man (how it seems from outside), but rather to be a black woman (and the effort is done for it to be changed).(5) Трудно быть не белым мужчиной (как кажется со стороны), а чёрной женщиной (и с этим борются). .

Bank Of America does not exist in every corner of every city (like it may seem to those who visited a couple of cities in one of the coasts :)). Bank Of America не стоит на каждом углу (есть и такие версии :)).

Roads are not always a perfect-quality highways. Дороги — не везде автомагистрали шикарного качества.

As you probably understood by now, I'm about popular cliches and incorrect generalizations. Вы, наверное, уже поняли. Я про популярные клише и некорректные обобщения.

I have lots of fun material already. And I keep accumulating it. У меня уже накопилось достаточно занятного материала. И продолжает копиться.

Let's go? Поехали?

What did you say they wear, T-shirts, shorts and tennese? Как-как вы говорите, футболки, шорты и кроссовки?

(1) Birch trees are the most loved trees in Russia. Some would compare Russian soul to a birch, some would compare a svelte Russian girl to a birch, but one thing is clear: "birch" means "Russian".)

(2) According to a popular Russian belief, only Russia has really well developed abusive language, and all that English has is a couple of words.

(3) The most ridiculous combination of all, that exists exclusively in Russia and is extinct in "civilized world", as I personally thought, until I started traveling.

(4) What many Russian immigrants miss. At first, until they find where to buy it.

(5) There's really not much racism in Russia. Or was not most of the time. The concept of some race being worse than another race is completely alien. As for genders, there's really no career problems, if you are a woman. Many people know that race and gender discrimination is an issue, but fewer know, why it is an issue. Thus, when average people hear about USA fighting the remnants of such discrimination, i.e., when average Russian people hear about colour people and women wanting more rights, they think: "what, they want even more rights than everyone else?!"

(c) crimeanelf.livejournal.com, 2007-2008 (Copyright notice). (c) crimeanelf.livejournal.com, 2007-2008 (Об авторских правах).

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62 comments or Leave a comment
mmag From: mmag Date: June 23rd, 2008 06:01 am (UTC) (Link)
Забавно, никогда не думал так =)
valrain From: valrain Date: June 23rd, 2008 06:27 am (UTC) (Link)
больше фото)
crimeanelf From: crimeanelf Date: June 23rd, 2008 06:48 am (UTC) (Link)
Будут. :)
max_i_m From: max_i_m Date: June 23rd, 2008 06:30 am (UTC) (Link)
>There's really not much racism in Russia. Or was not most of the time. The concept of some race being worse than another race is completely alien.

Really? Well, who's to say what's "not much" and what's "most of the time," but it's certainly not "completely alien."

Very true about wide majority of Russians not understanding race and gender issues of the US, though.

As for the racism in Russia:

Russian Neo-Nazis .

NY Times on African students in Moscow.

WiKi on Кондопога.

Negative attitudes towards people from Caucasus region were widespread at least since the early 90's, to which I can personally attest, at least for the city of Kiev, which admittedly is in Ukraine. But I doubt situation was significantly different in Russia.

Finally, antisemitism in Russia is centuries-old (I hope no references are needed).

crimeanelf From: crimeanelf Date: June 23rd, 2008 06:41 am (UTC) (Link)
As you correctly noticed, this situation showed up in the 90's. We did not live with this idea for generations and generations.

I feel that these attitudes are somehow imported. I cannot argue it, it's my own personal feeling.

Still, even now most of people would accept a person from Caucasus among their friends, or as a rock singer, or as a politician, or as a skilled doctor.

I believe, this fact makes these anti-immigrant moods be not eligible to be called "racists".
crimeanelf From: crimeanelf Date: June 23rd, 2008 06:47 am (UTC) (Link)
I agree that anti-semitism is a different issue.

Still, again, you would accept a Jew to be in most of social roles: doctor, banker, politician, right?

And (for most of people) Jew as a husband of your daughter is acceptable.

Also, I found, that very few people know, what Jews really are like. This userpic shows how I look. I was called a Jew several times!!!

How after this can you speak about a real racism in anti-semitic moods?
crimeanelf From: crimeanelf Date: June 23rd, 2008 07:21 am (UTC) (Link)
According to my boyfriend, I did not make it clear. And I do want to make it very clear!

What I wanted to say is that anti-immigrant moods that we observe in modern Russia and to some extend in modern Europe, are not exactly racism, they are something else.

Because segregation does not go by birth right (come on, most of Russians have a bunch of Caucasian friends, colleagues et cetera - as I understand, going to a black doctor, for example, was unthinkable in early USA). It goes by something else.

Look, an illegal immigrant from, say, Georgia, can be Georgian, Russian or any other blood you like. What makes him not liked by some people is not the race, but something else.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Expand
From: (Anonymous) Date: June 23rd, 2008 07:32 am (UTC) (Link)
I think that the hate problem in Russia is not the same racism that exists against the black population in the USA. The problem in Russia is a very strong anti-immigrant feeling and sentiment. This has very similar characteristics with the racism we are talking about because it's simpler for hate groups to assume that all people of dark skin and dark hair are immigrants and because where there is hostility against immigrants there is automatic segregation. This is a problem that is not exclusive of Russia but of all countries that have a dwindling population and/or are richer than their neighbors. In the USA it exists mainly against latinoamerican immigrants. In any case, I can understand why crimeanelf perceives this as new: Since movement was very restricted during soviet times and the now ex-soviet republics were not separate countries in the strict sense of the word the problem of illegal immigration is a completely new problem for Russia.

la_dy_ashley From: la_dy_ashley Date: June 23rd, 2008 07:08 am (UTC) (Link)
А я соглашусь на 100%, что расизма как такового в России нет. Неонацисты, слава тебе, Господи, явление редкое. Они есть, конечно - так слушайте, есть всего понемножку и во всем мире. Недавно попалась статья о разоблачении неонацистской группировки в Израиле. Хм. Отморозки есть везде и будут, наверно, но зачем это переносить на страну в глобальном смысле?!
Иммигранты страдают независимо от цвета кожи; просто в крупных городах людей доводит нежелание считаться с нормами "принимающей страны". Проблемы с кавказцами связаны не с цветом их кожи, а с их поведением и уже сложившимся имиджем - все верим, что от них весь криминал.

Насчет ломки стереотипов: да, конечно, ковбойская шляпа и джинсы - это совсем нетипичное представление об Америке:))))

crimeanelf From: crimeanelf Date: June 23rd, 2008 07:23 am (UTC) (Link)
>Иммигранты страдают независимо от цвета кожи

Вот! Ты молодец, сразу сказала. А я тут распинаюсь, Андрес говорит, ничего не понять, кроме того, что я расист. Расстроилась и дальше распинаюсь, а понятнее или нет - бог его знает. :( А ты - молодец!

>ковбойская шляпа и джинсы - это совсем нетипичное представление об Америке

Тебе бы всё хихикать, а я думала, что такой прикид давно вымер и встречается исключительно в вестернах. ;)
urich From: urich Date: June 23rd, 2008 09:11 am (UTC) (Link)
Вот ведь интересно, ты рассказываешь об Америке, а подискутировать пришли именно англоговорящие :)

Мне кажется большинство все-таки понимает что это именно клише и некорректные обобщения.
megancase From: megancase Date: June 23rd, 2008 02:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ну, примечания были только в английской версии, и мы одно из них обсуждаем...
max_i_m From: max_i_m Date: June 23rd, 2008 07:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
Отдельно от всего остального, поддерживаю идею рассказать об Америке. Я, помню, приехав два года тому в Киев, пытался обяснить бывшим однокласникам про жизнь тут. У меня не очень получалось. Их мнения об Американском быте были довольно далеки от моих ощущений от этого быта. Хотя они и не думали что все Американцы толстые идиоты и на каждом углу Bank of America, но их представления о здравоохранени, образовании и политической системе США были довольно далеки от реальности.
marka_pola From: marka_pola Date: October 29th, 2008 06:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
Я это перепощу к себе, можно?))
crimeanelf From: crimeanelf Date: October 29th, 2008 06:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Можно, с указанием авторства и ссылки на источник. :) Ну и учтите, что насчёт темы расизма меня таки убедили.
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