sábado, setembro 22, 2007

Some extra information on Portugal

Portugal is one of the oldest countries in Europe. That means this country was already a unit with some clear identity when others (very important and giving cards nowadays) were just hunting for a living and fighting each other in the (then) very dense forests of northern and central Europe. This country has the whole long length of western coast facing ATLANTIC OCEAN, which makes it an Atlantic country and not a Mediterranean country. The climate is not Mediterranean, let alone tropical, it is temperate That means we don't produce papayas, bananas and fruits like that. We also have a culture and a language that find their source in Latin mainly but also in Celtic, Iberian, Goth, Lebanese (Fenician), Jewish and Arab culture. Romans were here and their Greek influence, rationale and way of thinking was very early absorbed. Later, Arab, oriental and African cultures were also strongly adopted and adapted, together and along with the French, British and German intellectual legacy. Portuguese language is now spoken by almost 300 million souls: maybe because this small stupid country dared to mess up with the BIG ONES and got the earth divided in two (1494-Tordesilhas act) with Spain (while the British were dedicated to piracy in the seas) and in that division we made sure to get the best part: this stupid people had very early the intuition that India could only be reached surrounding Africa, and that America was a big continent (the north mainland was not actually yet "discovered" by Columbus at the Tordesilhas act time -he found some islands in 1492 he called India but only in 1498 did he reach mainland- north America): the fact that America was blocking the passage and that Brasil was there too and was placed east of the line of Tordesilhas was known by the navigators and the king(before Cabral reached Vera Cruz in 1500) : the globe was a lot bigger that commonly thought at that time... these idiot navigators here knew that and kept the secret very well (some theories claim they learned that from the Chinese). The division was carried out long before the map of the earth was drawn as we know it now. Secrets were well kept. The country didn't have enough population to hold the administration of half of the globe but that is another matter.
Lots of things were done that should not make us proud, mainly things like Inquisition, expelling the Jews who refused to convert to Christianity, slave traffic and slaughtering people. Neutrality during WWII should be considered a national shame as the colonial war in Africa from 1961 till 1974... It is still not generally considered as such in the mind of the people and those matters though not openly uttered still divide us deeply, as a nation. Nothing more really divides us, that is why all the ridiculous political discussions are so empty. The globe and its fate (now with its dominant neoliberalism and oil control agenda) is once more imposing to us and nobody talks about that fact!
But all that, even the unspoken (maybe specially the unspoken), that´s us. And the mixed blood makes us keen to like melting pots more than the ones that call themselves melting pots and never melted. We are the whole world in our blood (the poet said something like this): yes we are Jews and Arabs, Celts and Goths, Romans and Carthaginians, Africans and Europeans ... And this earthly/human blood mixed with western wind and the sight of the endless sea makes us a proud people and one very difficult to tame!
Is this nationalism? Maybe but it is also feeling strongly that there is nothing really that makes us very different from everybody else in the earth.

2 comentários:

Pinus Silvestris disse...

No dought Portugal has a fantastic history and people are very open minded. The landscapes are extemely beautifull .... I love Portugal too

melissa officinalis disse...

It would be good if EU would continue to be union in diversity. Europe as such has no meaning if it continues in the direction it seems to be going to. Nationalities in Europe have to be respected and national sovereignty cannot be reduced to nothing. European laws are very good, subsidiarity is a good concept. Identity of normal people in Europe is still more connected with the history of each nation than with the history of the big Europe at least thats the way i see it, i think that it is a fact that cannot be ignored. European citizenship is a good idea but can only work together with the concept of national citizenship.That is the way i see it, the way i feel it.