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Teacher killed in Bengazi, Libya
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12041
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear nickelgoat,

I'd say you handled it well. But (and you knew there was a "but" coming, didn't you?) even though you didn't introduce the topic (the students did), I'd say the best course would have been to shut it down ASAP.


It's a minefield, and though you seem to have traversed that one safely. such may not always be the case.

Regards,
John
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JustinC



Joined: 15 Mar 2013
Posts: 138
Location: The Land That Time Forgot

PostPosted: Tue Dec 10, 2013 9:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's good it worked out. If it came up again (religion, Americans' views of Islam etc) I'd say "You know my feelings, let's move on". Don't be tempted to extrapolate or reinforce their good behavior with your 'understanding' of their lives, which could be interpreted as condescending.

However, the bit about how the media distorts perceptions could be a good, ongoing topic. Focusing on commercialism, people's perceived need for cheaper consumer goods at the expense of their own livelihoods, the disruption to the environment for the sake of a better mousetrap etc. etc. could easily be discussed as the issues are mostly cross-cultural.
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