Ioanna Vovou, from the University of Paris 13, was appointed to start this dialogue and has done so by making reference to the information campaign for the euro, which was run throughout Europe, and how the campaigns “were based on the coming together of Europe’s national habits and customs with the euro in order to reassure citizens”.
In this sense, Vouvou spoke of two identities: the cultural and the ethnic identities, the latter of these arising especially in situations of crisis. In this sense every citizen has his or her own levels of identity such as religion, family or profession. In the case of the government-backed campaigns for the introduction of the euro Vouvou explained, “it is difficult to define the essence of Europe given that the idea of unity has to be understood in the multiplicity of the continent”.
Jordi Farré, from the Rovira i Virgili University, gave his presentation basing his arguments on the philosophy of John Dewey and his theories on education. In this respect, Farré explained “we experience mediation processes which alter our perception of others, influenced by the present discourse of fear and a climate of globalization”.
Farré also explained that the concept of others, which means the concepts of existence and coexistence, is often manipulated by the media but “the audience has to think, act and be responsible”. Farré, added that in relation to identity “individuals have to feel part of their own community, the global discussion cannot leave aside local responsibilities”. Nevertheless, for Farré “it is important to find meeting points for discussion in order to share and make ourselves understood. If we can manage to do this we will be capable of taking part in and via the media”.
Angela Piedad Garcés, from the University of Medellín, explained her experience with young people and music. Through musical genres such as rap or hip-hop “young people who live in an environment of permanent conflict are capable of channeling this conflict and their aggression”. In this sense, these musical spaces become symbols which enable young people to construct their collective identities, distancing themselves from this violent context for which Medellín is infamous. “Music offers them psychic and moral satisfaction”, added Garces.