Saturday, November 18, 2017
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Hope for a cultural heritage

I have been observing the Portuguese book market for a quarter of a century, having a look at new publications in fiction and non-fiction. I find most books offered by the traditional publishers, if you’ll forgive my saying so, rather boring: the selection of topics, as well as the style of writing and layout, are often old-fashioned. I sometimes wonder why so few young authors manage to produce their own books. Because it is in books that we realise our ideas and dreams, and tell our stories. Good books were always exciting and inspired other people – and were also …

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Shoemaking – Waldviertler apprentice campaign

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The Vegetarian

This is a story in three chapters about a woman who is, according to her husband, completely unremarkable – until one day she decides to stop eating meat. “Before my wife became a vegetarian, I didn’t think of her as anything special. On our first meeting, I didn’t even find her attractive. Average build, bowl haircut, neither short nor long, oily sallow skin, hooded eyelids und prominent cheekbones. I felt neither attracted nor repelled by her and so saw no reason not to marry her.” Yeong-hye and her husband are completely normal Koreans. He works hard at his office job, …

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You have to give something back to nature

The Farmer and His Prince Soil fertility? Biodynamic diversity? Appropriate livestock farming? Why does that concern me? To start with, I fear that the fairy tale around this farm will not last the 80 minutes. Because the subject matter of which the dream is made can also be quite dry sometimes. But my fear is unfounded. From the first word, a story is interestingly narrated, and packaged between superb pictures and sensitive music. The film “The Farmer and His Prince” is not allowed to be shown in Britain. Apparently the Queen is not in favour because her son, the Prince …

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Seabirds | Ecology vs. Economy

EN Anyone interested in Atlantic seabirds in Portugal and their maritime life is in the right place at www.spea.pt/pt/publicacoes/edicoes-virtuais.  In this library of the Portuguese association for the protection of birds SPEA, bird lovers will find, for example, the outstanding standard work “IBAs Marinhas“ (“Important Areas for Seabirds in Portugal” – in English too), covering 260 pages.  By clicking on the link, you will be taken to http://lifeibasmarinhas.spea.pt/pt/y-book/ibasmarinhas/ where you will find this free ISSUU book, which is a little bit old, but no less up-to-date. Every autumn, the world’s bird lovers meet in Sagres and observe migrations in the …

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Catálise

The documentary film created and directed by Patrícia Santos familiarises people with some of the pilot projects that comprise the project “CATÁLISE”. It also helps us to understand the essence of the project underlying the film. CATÁLISE or “Capacity-Building for Local Transition and Social Innovation”. Looking on the inside and focusing on the results produced in the different projects, this is a special visit to this movement’s protagonists. Taking us from the north to the south of Portugal, this documentary film presents people who have already embarked on their internal transition process and become socially aware, and who, with their …

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Mediterranean Algarve

“Mediterranean Algarve” is a fascinating experience in discovering the Algarve and a work that you can really enjoy to the full. In the course of its 320 pages, readers are invited to (re)discover the huge wealth of Mediterranean tradition in the region through its magnificent texts, splendid photographs and suggestions for contemporary cuisine. And the focus is on these three aspects because, having started with decades of work by the researcher Maria Manuel Valagão, it achieved its final form with the involvement of the photographer Vasco Célio(1) and the chef Bertílio Gomes(2). Maria Valagão told ECO123 that the book focuses …

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Planet Ocean

The work of the photographer, reporter, film maker and ecologist Yann Arthus-Bertrand (born in Paris in 1946) is characterised by its astonishing visual beauty and the importance of its environmentalist message. This can be seen in his photographs (published in the National Geographic, Paris Match and GEO) and in his films (‘Home’(1)), and in multi-disciplinary projects, in particular ‘7 billion Others’(2). Supported by the Good Planet Foundation (3), the multi-award-winning documentary ‘Planet Ocean’ fits perfectly within his work as a whole, even though made in partnership with Michael Pitiot. In the course of a visually thrilling film, we are given …

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Basic income, a cultural impulse

The documentary originally entitled “Grundeinkommen – ein Kulturimpuls” – “Basic income, a cultural impulse” in English – is a film-essay by Daniel Häni and Enno Schmidt lasting 100 minutes, produced in Switzerland in 2008. It is a key element in the campaign of the global movement that is fighting for the Unconditional Basic Income (UBI). It helps us to demystify and understand the formula which would make it possible to put this plan into practice, which would deliver conditions and rights so that everyone would be able to live decently. For this, the documentary points us towards a path where …

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It’s about the sausage…

about the milk and the meat that nourishes us, that we don’t want to give up. It’s about grazing animals, intensive livestock farming and about global animal agriculture. It’s actually a nice film, this 90-minute, American documentary. It surprises us with its research conclusion, and with the question why environmental organisations such as Greenpeace, WWF, Oceana, Amazon Watch and others actually bypass the subject of meat, quietly ignore it, and gently hush it up. They simply don’t tackle the topic because it doesn’t fit into their business model. Have the green environmental groups got cold feet and found conflicts of …

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