September 11th shook a nation — it still haunts the USA today. This memoir piece marks an emotional journey, and the physical complication of flying a few days after the terrorist attack to a memorial service of someone killed in the second plane. It is a reminder that life is temporary, and to live fully despite this.
What experiences shape our life trajectories and sense of self? What roles do family heritage, state formation, and linguistic and cultural barriers have in creating a person? Are we just byproducts of events and nature, both outside our control? The following personal essay focuses on the author’s background as a refugee from the former Yugoslavia and makes the case for why we should think of the ‘refugee experience’ as a distinct category from the larger ‘immigrant experience.’ The author argues that because refugees are forcibly displaced from their home countries, they have a unique relationship both to the places from which they had to leave as well as the places in which they ultimately end up.
How does art act as an indication of societal upheaval? This unique piece combines personal narrative and art history to remind us the roles we play are often conditioned by the structures we rail against.
Is the future of humanity threatened by scientific and technological advancements? In the merging of man with machines, is our collective earthly and worldly human condition endangered? What will we become if and when we are not bound by this earth?