Sunday, October 25, 2015

Autumnal thoughts


Last Sunday there was Jessi's birthday to be noted. In Berlin she was surrounded with her posse and my feeling is that the occasion was properly celebrated. The books I ordered for her arrived in Neuk├Âlln punctually. I expressed two heartfelt wishes for my daughter. The first was that she should get for her Masters dissertation a grade she could live with. 

That wish was promptly granted at the beginning of last week, to the delighted relief of all concerned. The instructor's justified critical comments were fair in all respects... Jessi's twelve-thousand words amounted indeed more to a well supported 'sweeping overview' rather than a dry 'methodological analysis'. The grade attributed, we agreed, could be regarded as generous.


[On the left is the 'shoop I was inspired to make.
It was not the cover of the dissertation submitted.]

My second wish for the birthday child was that her job applications would lead to a position with real professional prospects, that she would not for too long have to rely on the precarious 'gig economy' or struggle with miserably remunerated internships.

And later in the week it seemed again that Fortuna means well with Jessi. The position for which she is being considered now is one which fits her profile and her aspirations almost to perfection. Not a done deal yet, discussions are as they say 'ongoing' but the trajectory seems to me highly promising.

In her paper Jessi argues that cities recognized as 'hubs' of culture and media enterprise... Berlin taken as an example... risk luring legions of urban hipsters with the false promise of a laid-back and achingly cool lifestyle, but one which the economy can hardly sustain. Her view is that the controlling grip of an old dominant elite has not been relaxed but simply transformed in such a way that only those belonging to a new and equally restrictive elite can prosper as members of a 'creative class'.  

The irony is that Jessica nevertheless opted to move to Berlin and take her chance in the challenging and even threatening environment she described in her dissertation. 

What a super adventure!

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