Monthly Archives: March 2012


World Regions students in Spring 2012 gathered to watch Lumumba, a movie made in 2000 that is in French. It centers around the true story of the independence of the Democratic Republic of Congo, which pre-revolution was headed by Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba (hence the title!).  However, the movie was filmed in Zimbabwe and Mozambique. The first President of the country, Joseph Kasa-Vubu is sworn in alongside, but there are still obstacles in creating a stable state, as the two try to prevent the country from descending into chaos. What will happen? Viewers found out, and you can too if you watch this movie, or read up on the history of the DRC!

(P.S.: Sorry about the small movie poster! It was the largest of the ones I could find!)


Week 9 Lectures

Tuesday – Topics discussed included:

  • More about how the Toulouse shootings are affecting the French elections
  • A few years ago, the French banned the burka
  • How Sarkozy doesn’t really like Turkey
  • Nuclear security summit in South Korea…but no one talked about North Korea!
  • Morgan Freeman was James Bond?
  • Obama’s secret conversation with Medvedev and Mitt Romney says Russia is our enemy
  • More about the missile defense shield!
  • The literal reset button for American-Russian relations
  • Missile defense systems – do they work?
  • Kofi Annan’s six -point peace plan
  • Brazil says it’s the big dog of a Latin American trade block
  • MERCOSUR wants to be more than a trade block
  • What’s a cartel?

Thursday – Topics discussed included:

  • Plaid Avenger Issue 1 for everyone, and a gift for Boyer, too!
  • The Pope went to Latin America, but nothing really came of it.
  • Some Austrian guy cut off his foot because he was going to lose unemployment benefits. Whaaaat?
  • PetroChina RICH!
  • China’s looking at the South China Sea!
  • US bases in Australia
  • China’s fighting with Japan in the East China Sea
  • BRICS meeting! They’re an alternative to Team West.
  • Tibetans in India, and India’s uncool response
  • The Arab League is meeting in Baghdad. They’re trying to make Iraq stay Arab
  • Iran’s influence is spreading!
  • Where’s Erdogan? Talking to Iran
  • More international organizations!
  • NATO – Russia’s back in the game, and won’t let Ukraine and Georgia join

Sin Nombre

We watched Sin Nombre on October 5th, 2011! The movie centers on a girl named Sayra, a Honduran teenager trying to illegally immigrate to America to be with family in New Jersey. Most of the movie takes place in Mexico, however, as she and her uncle and brother must hop on trains as they travel to the Mexico-America border. Along the way, Sayra and her family are robbed by members of the Mexican gang Mara Salvatrucha (which does exist in real life!). However, one of the robbers, Willy, changes his mind and kills one of the other robbers, who happens to be the leader of the gang. Sayra and Willy now have to travel to the border while avoiding gang members who want to kill Willy for being a traitor to the gang.

Sin Nombre was filmed in Mexico in 2009, and is in Spanish.

We also watched this movie on March 21, 2012 for the Spring 2012 semester.

Week 8 Lectures!

Boyer went to SxSW the week before, and we had Spring Break before that, but class resumed this week and free stuff was given out! It was a great welcome back this week for Spring 2012 World Regions students!

Tuesday – Topics discussed included:

  • We’re having a double-header movie night on Wednesday!
  • How Americans are ignorant about what’s happening in Mexico – the Mexican population is divided about drug wars, but it’s still just a blip on the radar historically
  • What would happen if Mexico legalized everything? (Answer: The drug war would move to America)
  • Russia may back UN plan in Syria that everyone should cease fire
  • French school shooting linked to other shootings targeted toward minorities. Cultural friction rears its head in Europe!
  • North Korea plans to launch a satellite on a giant rocket, 30 days after they said they wouldn’t do rocket tests. They claim it’s a plaque. Whaaaat?
  • What should happen to Japan’s self-defense force? What direction should it go in?
  • More on international organizations: from trade pacts to trade blocks, the EU’s history
  • Italy is more divided than Germany!

Thursday – Topics discussed included:

  • We’re going to have class outside one day!
  • More on the EU: history, what it has become, and how it might be in trouble now, the difference between the EU and the eurozone, and why there’s talk of bringing back national currency to Euro-only countries
  • Is the eurozone crumbling?
  • Other trade blocks (APEC, ASEAN – the next EU?, NAFTA, MERCOSUR, FTAA, CAFTA)
  • The Pacific Ocean is going to be hot with regards to trade
  • The Internet is powerful now, but governments and corporations can use it too!
  • There was a military coux in Mali, but is this unexpected? (No)
  • Why you should invest in the Arctic