Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Recent reader comments - thanks everyone!!!

This month has brought a bunch of comments from readers around the globe! Thanks so much to everyone who commented! In case you didn't see these, here's a quick run-down of recent comments:

Pink Soju commented on the post Korean Fashion - Couple Tees!!, mentioning that they are in style in the Philippines as well, mentioning "most of us here are K-Pop fan-addicts ^_^ ". If you want to know more about Korean movies, you should check out Pink Soju's blog, which features lots of reviews.

My post about uncontacted Amazonian natives in Peru drew Ethnonomad's attention, commenting:
Great article! Anthropologists believe that there are about 70 different isolated groups living in the Brazilian Amazon. There are probably more than 100 untouched groups living in Latin America.We have a lot to learn from these people. The Amazon has the largest diversity of plants in the planet. More than 50% of prescription drugs are derived from chemicals identified in plants. Shamans that live in the rainforest know a wide variety of herbs that can be used to cure diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer. When a shaman dies he/she carries to the grave a body of knowledge that could be transmitted to our modern world. Future generations depend on us acting to protect indigenous people and their culture.
I appreciated Ethnonomad's comment and agree that there is a wealth of knowledge to be gleaned from those who have lived amongst such diversity for generations. However, I understand Guy's response to Ethnonomad in stating that it is difficult to gain such insight from indigenous peoples without threatening their way of life, especially since our modern, fast-paced culture doesn't allow for cautious consideration regarding how to interact with the Amazonian peoples.  Ethnonomad's blog http://www.planetcultures.org/ shares "nonmainstream media devoted to defend the environment and promote cultural diversity in Latin America" and I found a recent video he posted quite interesting - check it out!

Maggie wrote some comments on a few of my Congolese posts, sharing some of her favorite musicians and artists. Maggie's love of Congolese music is evident from her many many suggestions!!! I absolutely love the music of Tabu Ley Rochereau - one of the "grandaddies" of Congolese music. Here's a video I found:

I couldn't figure out how to embed more than one video per post (if anyone knows, please let me know!!!) so here are some links to some more modern Congolese music that I enjoyed from Maggie's list of suggestions:

Aurlus Mabele with the group Loketo
Zaiko Langa Langa
Papa Wendo & Pepe Kalle & Empire Bakuba
Soukous Stars

Maggie also shared a great Congolese artist with me - Cheri Samba. His works have gained great international acclaim, with some of his pieces in renown collections such as the Pompidou (Paris) and MoMA (NYC). He was also featured in the 2007 Venice Bienalle.  Growing up the eldest of 10 children in a village in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, he and his family moved to Kinshasha when he was in his teens. There he began to work as a sign painter, which has noticeably impacted his work that frequently features text along with bold, bright colors, and representational imagery. His work centers around themes of African customs, sexuality, social inequalities, corruption and political themes. Cheri is a major promoter of contemporary African artists to the international contemporary art community. Here are some of his works:

 An anonymous reader checked out my post Crossing the Alps - Hannibal's Famous Journey - with Elephants!!! and drew my attention to the book "The Elephant's Journey" by Jose Saramago, which details the story of another elephant that crossed the Alps. In 1551, King Joao III of Portugal gave an elephant, Solomon, to Archduke Maximilian of Austria. Transporting the massive animal proved a challenge, which is elaborated upon in this book. If you are interested, check out this NY Times review.

Thanks to everyone for the interesting and informative comments this month! It's great to see that people are reading and interested in my posts, and I hope to keep sparking conversations!!!


  1. Thank you for sharing my thoughts in your blog Nikki.

    Loved the article about Peru. Here in Berkeley we have a great Peruvian restaurant. If you ever come to he bay area you should eat there.

    I am glad you talked about Saramago. He was a great man. The world cried when the Portuguese prophet died last year.

    Thank you. Keep up the good work and spread the knowledge.

  2. Hi Nikki,

    I'm happy you found Tabu Ley and Cheri Samba. I discovered a whole lot of postcards by Cheri Samba in a second-hand bookshop a few years a ago and now I always check those ignominious cardboard boxes on the counter.......

    Been reading your blog about Peru...........I love the Nazca Lines and the street musician. He reminded me of the beautiful pipe music a peruvian band used to play on the street in Melbourne, Oz.

    Sparkling conversations rule!!!

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