Tales from Humanitarian Bohemia is a blog that reviews literature related to the field of human rights, humanitarianism and social justice from both the fiction and non fiction genres.
The reasons I started it were to better articulate my thinking concerning what I was reading in this field, as well as to provide an educational resource.
I love reading. I like to think this is demonstrated by my yearly goal of reading at least 24 books a year. That mightn’t be as impressive as what other bibliophiles get through in a year, but I believe that getting through two books a month is a decent benchmark.
I believe that the consumption of a plurality of literature or written media should not be passive. Reading for me is a form of conversation between the author and the reader where one can reflect on their own beliefs in light of what the text is presenting. It is a chance to expose ourselves to new ideas and to challenge ourselves.
Unfortunately, the phenomena as described above is a solitary pursuit, and the interactivity between the two parties involved is limited. While it can stimulate us to look at things in a different perspective, the process described above is a monologue being conducted in the reader’s mind. As such, I want to create a medium that provides a dialogue with fellow readers about what I am reading.
I am also passionate about human rights. I am a committed member of Amnesty International, and am the convener of the local multicultural chapter of that organization in Nagoya, Japan. I have also been long involved in asylum seeker/refugee activism to varying degrees. I am also active in the local chapter of Climate Action Nagoya. In short, I believe in being an active citizen, which I view as a countermeasure to becoming an object of law as opposed to being a subject of it.
I want to combine my two passions of activism and reading to also connect with other kindred spirits. I want readers of this blog to use it to bring attention upon and to discuss issues that don’t make it into the public discourse for various reason. I want to make it clear at this point that I am not the final authority on any of the fields that this blog is related to. I welcome discussion with the honest and well intentioned, as this is a way of deepening one’s own knowledge and outlook. Through these types of exchanges, we can find ways to collaborate on activist projects and make contacts across borders.
While this is a work in progress, I eagerly await the conversations that are to be had here.