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Student kills American teacher in northern Iraq
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9307
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 5:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
spiral78,

Thanks for that reply. So tell me, in your view, is it wrong to toss aside an application from someone who puts this kind of language in his/her CV, or should one just ignore it and go by the education and work history?

How the students would get along with the teacher is also important, and I question whether someone of that mindset would gel with them, in a genuine sense


To be honest (and not PC) I'd put such a CV aside if I were hiring for a context where being openly Christian could cause difficulties. I would fear that there would be far too many possibilities for problems to arise on all kinds of fronts.

To be even less PC (please forgive me, everyone) many (not all, but many) Americans come from a background where NOT to be a practiciing Christian would mark them as 'strange.' Such people, while well-meaning, can mistakenly take quite a lot for granted in terms of tolerance for their faith when travelling abroad - not only in the ME, but in other parts of the world as well.

No, if I were hiring for a place where religious issues are volatile at all, I'd put aside a CV/cover letter from a candidate who openly talks about 'serving.'

I'm sure this offends some people, and fair enough, but there are simply more than enough challenges teaching abroad, and particularly in the ME, without adding this to the mix.

Caveat for clarity: I have never taught in the ME. I have done extensive work with Saudi students outside their natural environments. I did assign teachers to the Saudi programme in Canada, and avoided the one fervent Christian and also an openly gay teacher - again, not PC, but the students were dealing with quite enough culture shock as it was, and they were there only for a short course - they were not immigrants. No need to unnecessarily add to the burden. I've also worked with occasional students from pretty much every other ME country over the years. Some were very sensitive to religious issues, some not - but inside the ME is clearly a different story.

Overall, one of the things I've learned from my nearly 15 years in various countries outside the US is that being all PC and gender/religious/ethnic sensitive does people considering EFL a disservice. If one is of Indian descent and wants to teach in the Czech Rep, for example, it's a good idea to know in advance that Czechs may assume you are a gypsy and may not always treat you with the respect you deserve. Black teachers heading to Moscow should know in advance that it can be tough to be black there. And devout Christians heading to devoutly muslim countries should really know what to expect.
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sliim



Joined: 27 Jan 2006
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 12:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

spiral78,

I agree with your post, and I don't think that it should cause any offense to anyone. When dealing with sometimes conflicting realities of students and teachers, PC is not always manageable.

But back to the "serving" business, from what you say I gather it is a euphemism for proselytization, then. It is what I suspected, but I tend to fall towards the cynical side of things.

I mean, there is not much difference between "to preach" and "to gently encourage 'learning about Jesus'...at every slightest opening." So if a country/region/people are hostile towards missionaries coming in and openly preaching, then the loophole is to not come in "to preach," but rather "to serve," right?

If so, do you find that this kind of pushes people's buttons a bit? Again, I emphasize that this is nothing to be killed for, but the behavior in general does seem a bit provocative.

Mikalina, I would also like to hear your thoughts on this, if you are there.
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9307
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I mean, there is not much difference between "to preach" and "to gently encourage 'learning about Jesus'...at every slightest opening." So if a country/region/people are hostile towards missionaries coming in and openly preaching, then the loophole is to not come in "to preach," but rather "to serve," right?



Well, I think there is a fairly definitive line between 'serving' and proselytzing.

People who are serving first of all try to lead by example: it's their own lives and work that are meant to set an example. Secondly is offering whatever to people who may be open to it (whatever being a whole range of stuff, from a simple bible story to an actual bible, to an offer of a meal or meeting that includes prayer and possibly religious teaching).

People who are proselytising are openly and actively seeking converts.

I absolutely think that 'serving' would be very very risky in a devoutly muslim country, and honestly I don't think people should try it. I personally think it can well be perceived as provocative. Of course, it's nothing to be killed for, but if I were in your position of hiring, I wouldn't consider a candidate who wanted to come to 'serve.'

I, too, would like to hear more from Mikalina. The establishment in this news story was, after all, openly a Christian one, so it still seems a bit extreme that a staff member may have been killed for 'serving' or even for prostelytising. As she stated eariler, it may have been an entirely different sort of offence taken.
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Mikalina



Joined: 03 May 2011
Posts: 106
Location: Iraq

PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, talk about kid gloves!!!!

We are dealing with so many stereotypes, generalisations and our own experiences and subjective opinions here that it is a minefield.

'Muslim' covers a huge range of peoples, cultures, experiences as does 'Christian'.

With mega mega mega respect, Spiral, I would have to ask you to consider why you think a Muslim would be anti Christian in the ME? A Christian and a Muslim have a lot more in common and can relate on a spiritual level than either can with someone of a secular nature.

As for being provocative by 'serving' - in the small part of the ME I lived in being 'me' was provocative. I wouldn't jump when told to by the male staff - provocative; I woldn't sign undeserved certificates - provocative; I didn't cover my hair - a provocative sign of a loose woman; I went walking alone in the evenings - a provocative sign of a loose woman; I lived alone - yeah, you guessed it.

Spiral's point was right. We can give new teachers information about any dangers they may face and that was the point of my original post but it does have to be based on personal experience and not opinion cus then we are open to our own unknown stereotyping and prejudices.

As for what to do with CVs professing the need to serve God, Slim, dump them. I'm sure that any Christian who has faith in their God will know that God will get them the job, with or without you!!
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Christian St.Bacon



Joined: 26 Oct 2011
Posts: 54

PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 6:54 pm    Post subject: WITHOUT, thank you very much..... Reply with quote

with or without you,
wiiiiith orrrrrrrr wiiiiiiiiiithouuuuuuuuuuut yooooooou......

Shukran 'without' very much
Very Happy Smile Wink
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12301
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 7:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear Mikilina,

" . . . but it does have to be based on personal experience and not opinion cus then we are open to our own unknown stereotyping and prejudices."

The problem there, of course, is that all too often, our personal experiences are filtered through our stereotypes/prejudices, and so, what we end up with is a subjective opinion, anyway.

This is why a racist will sometimes say, "Why, some of my best friends are ________ (fill in the blank.)

Regards,
John
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Mr. Kalgukshi
Mod Team
Mod Team


Joined: 18 Jan 2003
Posts: 5974
Location: FSU 13-0 -- Go 'Noles! 2014 BCS Bowl Champions

PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A posting focusing on religion has been deleted. Such postings violate board policy:

http://forums.eslcafe.com/job/viewtopic.php?p=616275#616275

This thread is now being closely monitored by the Mod Team and future religion postings on this or any thread will result in severe sanctions and the thread may no longer be available.
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Christian St.Bacon



Joined: 26 Oct 2011
Posts: 54

PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 3:12 am    Post subject: Multiple choice... Reply with quote

This is why a racist will sometimes say, "Why, some of my best friends are ________ (fill in the blank.)

a) Welsh Wink b) White Smile




c) GINGER Laughing Laughing Laughing d) Xenophobic Very Happy


Shukran 'GINGERS' very much
Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy
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