Sociologist from Malta

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Op-eds in the Malta Independent

Dear Friends, 

Once again in 2021 I am committed to write my fortnightly Thursday op-ed sociological focus in The Malta Independent print and online editions. Thanks to all readers and staff at The Malta Independent. Best wishes for 2021 ­čÄë


Thursday, December 24, 2020

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

#─Žsibijiet (75) Kura─í─í

Kura─í─í!

Kura─í─í lil kull min qieg─žed ji─í─íieled il-battalji tieg─žu, fis-silenzju.

Battalji li jistg─žu jin─žassu iktar waqt ┼╝mien il-festi. 

Hemm affarijiet li ma nistg─žux inbiddlu. Fl-istess ─žin ─žadd ma jista' jiddettalna  l-atitudni tag─žna lejn dawn l-affarijiet. Fortunatament je┼╝istu persuni li jistg─žu jg─žinuna inqumu fuq saqajna. U kultant trid tirkeb il-mew─ía minflok ma titkisser ─ío fiha.

I┼╝da hemm affarijiet li jistg─žu jinbiddlu. Biex ikun hemm xaqq ta' tama, kultant je─žtie─í li nkunu kura─í─íu┼╝i u nag─ž┼╝lu dak li hu ─íust, dak li je─žtie─í li jsir. 

Mhux fa─őli. I┼╝da forsi l-providenza tag─ž┼╝el lil dawk l-iktar qalbiena g─žall-ikbar sfidi.

Dal-Milied, nixtieq ng─žid kura─í─í lil min qieg─žed ji─í─íieled il-battalji tieg─žu.







Friday, December 11, 2020

#─Žsibijiet (74) Simulacra and social change

I often get the impression that parallel universes exist in Malta, the small-island which happens to be the tiniest EU member state. 

Let's look at flashy protagonists of the activism/politics/media industry. Networks often support each other, legitimizing each others voices, echoing narratives, covering costs, being selectively critical and assuming that the whole world is watching.

Only that scientific value surveys consistently show that silent majorities have other concerns, and that social change is multifaceted. It goes beyond slogans, likes and photo-opportunities. But as long as we're happy applauding ourselves, that's fine. 




Thursday, December 10, 2020

Tuesday, December 08, 2020

#─Žsibijiet (73) Silent majorities and social bubbles

In the news we often read about sensationalist activity which makes snackable media and generates clicks. 

But at the same time, silent majorities may be doing their own thing in silence. Some express contention not through public action, but through their choices and interactions in everyday life. The same holds for those who conform to mainstream norms and values. 

And each and every one of us faces our own contradictions: We conform to certain processes, institutions and norms but do not conform to others. 

From a sociological perspective, if we wish to understand the plurality, intersections and dynamics of people's perspectives and aspirations beyond our own social bubbles, it is important both to study protest, contention and public discourses, but also to investigate the everyday interactions and choices of people beyond the public sphere.





Friday, December 04, 2020

#─Žsibijiet (72) Distorted Communication

In politics and activism, the narrative of the party, faction, group, organization, ideology, identity is often echoed in monolithic ways. 

This often leads to parallel discourses which talk past each other: Social distancing in rhetoric, a far cry from deliberation. 

How about grounding oneself into evidence and opening oneself to different possibilities before reaching conclusions in advance?