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di Alessandra Romano   

Il saggio si pone l’obiettivo di analizzare in chiave socio-educativa il fenomeno della spettacolarizzazione del dolore attraverso i media.

Tale sovraesposizione del privato e della storia personale dei soggetti collima con la strutturazione di una società dell’apparenza, dove all’interiorizzazione dei ruoli sociali si sia sostituita la esteriorizzazione di una maschera costruita internamente, e tutta tesa alla ricerca dell’approvazione altrui gratificante. La spettacolarizzazione dell’intimo e del privato, come dei sentimenti, risulta, quindi, in primis un problema identitario e antropologico. Viene dettagliatamente approfondito, come esempio più drammatico di questo trend mediatico, il fenomeno migratorio che nel biennio 2014-2015 sta investendo l’Europa. L’immigrazione Siriana, tutt’ora all’ordine del giorno, rappresenta un case-study appropriato per mostrare come un certo tipo di televisione e informazione del dolore impatti sull’opinione pubblica. La seconda parte del saggio è dedicata alla promozione di una pedagogia interculturale, grazie alla quale favorire la costruzione di una polimorfa realtà comunitaria, e alla proposta di un lavoro sulle emozioni e sulle esperienze di vita, quale quello attraverso l’Informal Learning (Marsick, 2009; 2015). Le metodologie di intervento con l’Informal Learning consentono di creare ponti tra il sapere formale e informale tra le culture, e di promuovere consapevolezza e riflessione critica rispetto all’uso dei media, per andare oltre l’informazione data.


The present paper aims to analyze the media spectacularization of the pain in a socio-educational key. The over-exposition of the private and of the individual life story belongs to a society based on the appearance, where the internalization of the social roles has been changed with the externalization of the faces, with the spasmodic search for the others’ approvation. The essay tries to offer a new perspective trough which to study the current phenomena of the spectacularization of the pain through the case study of decolonization and immigration. The Syrian immigration, about which mass media are talking about nowadays, is the case study to explain how a certain kind of pain’s tv acts and impacts on public opinion. It will be discussed particularly the theoretical perspective of intercultural approach in order to deconstruct the historical approaches to the dynamics of immigration and meeting of different cultures. The second part of the paper is devoted to the promotion of an intercultural pedagogical approach, thanks to which to construct a kaleidoscopic community, and they will be offered some pedagogical suggestions for working with the problem of the emotional education and of the immigration phenomena. The methodologies of intervention with informal learning means to bridge together formal and informal knowledge between culture, and regarding the use of the media and of the television which is widespread.


1. The media of the pain and its identity consequences


This paper aims to afford the spectacularization of the new media acquiring the lens of the phenomenon of immigration. The global immersion in the sea (maybe the ocean?) of the multimedial communication, thanks to radio, podcast, smart tv, smartphone, I-pad, and so on, is the constant of current days. In the ocean of infomation, each kind of ‘news’ is prepared and popularized in more different ways, always emphasizing its tragicity and ability to involve people. What seems to be interesting for people is not news content, but its sensationalistic and spectacular aspects. Especially with the television and public media, in the kingdom of the audience, the journalists and all workers for the official press declare their transparency and honesty, while they just search for an increasing of the target of their programs. Moreover, the mainstream is that of matching cultural and information programs with trash programs, that clearly go against personal, social and community rights, and that are widespread among population. Those trash programs impact on creating a mind narcosis, foreclosing each kind of suffering or pains, as they were not part of the reality. The same reality television programs are so far from representing reality, plastering participants in stereotypical roles and figures. What about the ability of matching together sadness and happiness as primary emotions? The questions are also about ethics and education: daily we see powerless that growing emotional numbness in people’s eyes. The numbness hinders and inhibits human empathy and sympathy, and makes human beings indifferent, apathetic, unconcerned about disasters, natural calamities, sufferings of people who simply live in other countries or are not enough lucky. I’d like to stress the empathetic lines in the communication media, suggesting new educational methodologies of interventions for macroscopic social issues, and inviting the reader to adopt an aware approach to the information given.

New social realities are characterised by these dimensions:

  1. Knowledge era, because it is the Information and Communication Technologies epoch. So people are choked by billions of information everytime, and they are always on-line and connected with the rest of the world. Even if nobody can put in question the importance and the relevance of new media, something goes wrong and is out of control. So many events, become of public domain, highligthing the border between right to information and media pillage, between participation and unhealthy curiosity, between inquiry and gossip.
  2. Globalization, and the troubles of cosmopolitanism. The Challenges for the 21st Century are to face the new problems of the globalization (and for new problems there should be new solutions), to create the conditions for adapting to change, developing critical thinking skills and improved interpersonal/communications skills in this smaller world, with hundred and hundred billions of information to process. The only constant today is change: technology is increasing faster than we can keep up with it; and we are faced with new challenges for which there is no precedent. We cannot draw on solutions we used to use in the 20th century because the problems we face are new - or we have to ‘think outside the box’, and there are new competencies that will be needed in the 21st century (Strollo, Romano, Volpe & Hu, 2015).
  3. Engagement and participation. The engagement is conceived as political engagement, first of all, which depends greatly on institutional arrangements, political circumstances and levels of socioeconomic development. Participation is the property of being part of, and of taking part to, and it is a mission and a duty for our citizenship. The signs of the political participation, as the political engagement, are social partipation in voting, contracting representative candidates, both in a vertical (unidirectional) and horizontal (interactive) way. I’d like to analyze how those forms of involvement in society power relationships come across the new media which influence them. Let’s just think to all the political scandals and their relevance on mass media, starting from the Sexgate of the US president Clinton to arrive to italian politicians public sexual affairs.
  4. Flatter and networked reality, because we are always hyperconnected and in digital networks boundaries are permeable, and hierarchies can be flatter and recursive. The hierarchical hegemony of bureaucratization leads to lighter, flatter and more networked community organizations and associations, even if it persists the instantaneity of liquid life (Bauman, 2003) with fluidity, temporality and uncertainty.
  5. Immersive technologies: the Internet network changed the nature of the continuing tension between centralization and personalization, virtuality and corporeality.


The social environments with which we are confronted are considered VUCA environments (Marsick, 2015), alias:

  • Volatile
  • Uncertain
  • Complex
  • Ambigous Environments of life and work.

What Argyris and Schön (1974; 1978) called uncertain and undefined situations are the daily conditions of human experience in the postmodernism.

The issue of the post-contemporary time is to live in the present moment, in the here and now, experiencing ow identity in the modernity context. The shell of the modernity is the media-culture: the media are languages and technologies which simulate and strengthen the functionality of the human thoughts and the mechanisms of building the knowledge networks. The individual is overwhelmed by technology, he has lost his perspective of realizing himself as human being, he feels vulnerable and without desire or hope for the future (Recalcati, 2011). The widespread of the social media and of the technological media influenced the idea of building a character instead of building own identity, of constructing a self-image which can be socially accepted. The television of the ‘reality program’ extracts the private and intimate dimension in the society of the ‘confessional’, that inglobes everything letting people identify with violence and angry. The personal expression of own potentialities is searched through the exhibition of ourselves, escaping the natural process of becoming ‘adult’ and ‘wise’, in the useless run to be forever young. The shades are unlimited, and everyone can be defined thanks to race, gender, social class, and sexual orientation. The net of relationships is based on the game that we play, and on the etiquette that we wanna respect. The face is the self-image that I’d like to project outside and that I’d like the others recognize: also the face is an artefact and is not the expression of an authentic self. The spectacularization of the pain is also this, when the tears are not true and are not expressing people inwardness. People spend a lot of time for the construction of their own faces, and for forcing the others to see exactly what they would like they see. The face is the metaphor of the exteriority, of the appearance that is not human integrity and essence. While the social role is internalized, the social face is externalized, is an inner construction, which is projected outside for the ethics of the reciprocal adjustment. The existential criterion is to spend money and to consume, so if I consume, I express myself, and consuming I collaborate to go out from the economic crisis and I show my identity. We are the main merchandise of ourselves, the main product to sell and to expose. The overexposition of human beings draws out from the spread of the real television, with all its consequences: it is common now that in public everyone can discuss about his private business, that everyone can go in television talking about his history, that they prevail the exhibitionism of nudity and the competitions with others. While the manteinance of the social roles requires collaboration and cooperation, the logic of the social faces is the elimination of the others and the prevarication of the best. The educational issues are first of all effects of alienation on human life, no limits feelings, loss of authority and of cardinal points. Apparently we are in the time of the maximum freedom when everyone can be whatever he wants, but all this freedom generates instability, discomfort, insecurity, uncertainty, caos and pain, fragility. The human bonds are more and more fragile, losing their power, which is based on the trust people feel each other. Liquid modernity (Bauman, 2003) is not the image of the future humanity, but is the time of the excess and of the too much in which we live (Ravaglia, 2009).

In the society of the spectacular the main aim is to astonish and to amaze, in positive and in negative. At the same time, the spectacle of the information allows many newscasts and programs of the small screen to increase their audience. The television market imposes its laws even to public networks, instrumentalizing the scope and the purposes of telling a story or a tragic event. And, the Tv of the suffering and of the pain arrived to the spectacle of the drama: the share grows up if the content can arouse strong emotions, and the journalistic information wants to show the suffering at all costs. In this digital age, where the public is bombarded with all kinds of information, and therefore everything which draws attention, it must be spectacularized. The advent of digital era is inevitably changing our habits and even the way we get information and relate to them. Internet and the always-connected systems bombard us with fragments, pieces of information, lead us to navigate, to click frantically and compulsively. We dragged and as we stop only a few seconds at a time on a topic, driven by the anxiety of the next click.

The pain’s Tv, such as television programs addressing cases of crime or events focused on hardships decline them in a way that gives the show a lot of personal or collective drama. There are lot of programs which introduce themselves as information programs, but that tell the stories exactly stressing their tragicity, using rethoric narratives which have the effect of involving the audience and capturing its attention. The criterion is not the truthfulness of the information transmitted, but the share, the index of the public following, that means more money, sponsors, advertisements, which are the objectives of everything in this consumistic society. This attraction for the pain is in common also with the spectacularization of the disease, especially of the mental disease, with a pathological interest for killers, criminals, about whom people want to know everything. There’s a sort of pathological attraction for pathological people, who committ atrocity. Sometimes, and it happened in the italian public opinion, someone who did abominations, looked as he/she had awarded a prize for its mistakes, found notoriety and publicity.

This strategic instrumentalizing of the sufferings goes through the instrumental depiction of pain, with craying, contracted faces, excess of pathos in the story-telling, with sound effects, suspence, rethorical questions. Other signals of the pain’s tv are the no-natural construction of empathy, signal images, film and look, a mixture of fiction and reality, emotional involvement, or the acting process in TV, where the reality of the process, the evaluation of expertise, the credibility of witnesses, the participation in the parties’ lawyers are all artificial and planned before. The logic absorbent of the ‘infotainment’ (Molina, 2015) proposes fake educational goals, social protests, indignation, anger, investigative contribution, morality values, while it is only a way to match together information and entertainment with materialistic aims.

Journalists, reporters and the media as a whole have a great responsibility and the world of information must be aware of the power that holds power and how this can influence the minds of the population ranges weak: I am referring to minors, certainly but also to personality disturbed people that in front of a certain spectacle, subjected to so-called mass media bombardment, may be adversely affected enough to be entangled (even if they are instigated).

In fact, our civilization is characterized by a desire and a need to take center stage and this is particularly evident among the young generation: being leaders means appear under the spotlight of the success, to be recognized, finally after an existence characterized by existential emptiness, boredom. Because if you do not go on television then you’re nobody. The reference models of many teenagers of modern civilization are people-characters that exist only through the spectacle and the myth of a way of life that is no longer supported by the concept of sacrifice, but rather by the desire of all and immediately. Some TV shows give this message: the ease of becoming famous. If you can get into the circus of wonders then to be able to be someone, everyone will recognize you and you will acquire the successful status symbol. Unfortunately extremely uncertainty and emptiness of fragile and inconsistent identity can lead to a reality distortion with the loss of a balanced examination of reality as an expression of a deep discomfort.

Children normally see the same programs followed by parents: the news, for example, which has become a bulletin of wars, of which there is the indispensable corollary of the crime reports, the only (it seems) to have media coverage; and of all the more puzzling spectacle of the most heinous and macabre events. Nothing to do with the outrage civil crimes, deaths on the job is not ‘excited’ as a (un)healthy family tragedy: we are interested above all in staging the private horrors, those closest to us (in all senses). But the same goes for certain so-called programs of service and many other entertainment (same purpose, but more honestly stated), in which they staged farces and domestic tragedies, dramas, relationships, often false, invented and recited – the smuggling of fake feelings – that, however, exploit people without hesitation and decency, instigating guests and the public to give the worst of themselves; where we expose indecent frustrations and anxieties, with the irruption of the private, and of the personal facts (yours, so our, therefore all) of the intimate on stage media, instilling a certain common vision of the world.

We managed to invent the so-called pain’s Tv, from which they proliferated the ignoble and smug ugliness vortex of transmissions truth, reality shows often disguised as journalistic to ethically justify their aims. Perhaps many forgot the commitment of programs devoted to the massacre in New York (September 11, 2001) which added horror to horror, endlessly reinventing images of carnage: the skyscrapers in flames, the plane exploded on impact with the building, the people who rush, the smoke and the flames, lingering macabre pleasure, on the details, dilating the time of the tragedy with the use of slow motion, as happens in the worst Hollywood films. Not only that, some channels showed scenes of disaster films in parallel to emphasize the spectacular event.

The television is the master of the reality show that is cheap and does a lot of audience. A subtle strategy and not without consequences, especially for viewers less thoughtful, therefore, primarily teenagers: using journalists as guarantors of the craps, for crediting. Other programs sustain the invasion of the screen in the intimate life, like the Big Brother, justifying this intrusion as necessary for satisfying human curiosity. A television without quality, chasing vulgar instincts, tickle them and emphasizes or even causes them, regardless of the consequences and implications of social models that are spread, the culture that feeds (or perhaps it evoked: the tense of no-brain and no-thinking users), is subjected to the homage to the only recognized value: the audience; pursued at any cost, often bluntly, in a prejudiced contempt of the public, who also sometimes throws unexpected signs of maturity (such as for few television programs, which try to promote reflection and consciousness raising). If, as we can see, we are going through the era of consumerism of the affections, where everything is consumed and devoured in the overwhelming logic of the moment, there is no space for any desire that may arise from a lack or a need. We must confront with a drying up of the widespread desire that touches the sphere of ties, rarefied and subject to forms of utilitarian exchange, with the disappearance of a planning horizon by an adult generation that shows difficulty in pushing new generations towards perspectives of other possible worlds.

It seems that the diagnostic categories of Eating Behavioral Disorders correspond to an anorexia and bulimia of feelings, all aimed at filling or controlling the vacuum and instability inside and outside, so the feelings and affections are low-cut from relational practices and these are act in compulsive ways by young people. The dimensions of hypermodern civilization destroyed the faith in humanity. Conversely, they are setting themselves up as fear, insecurity, anguish and silent violence. Dreams do not fix anymore the daily microtrauma and the fictions of the media merely try to make them fall asleep. In the ‘unthought’ of these experiences that they are buried with denial, isolated with the split, covered with manic dancing in clubs. These insecurity and despair are created by the exiles, from migration, exclusion, unemployment, by uprooting. It is the uncertainty about the present, distrust in front of broadcasts that do not generate future, or otherwise dull the excitement of the fundamentalism, extreme and fragile dependence on technical objects, from the urgencies, the ephemeral ties, which hinder the future. The imperative of post-modern citizen is to deconstruct, subvert, demystify all kinds of dominant codes, authorities, institutions, norms and conventions. The boundaries of the Self become fluid and dispersed (Kaës, 2014).

One of the questions which arose is if we can construct a solidarity which allows a mutual knowledge and a fluidity in the social world. About this question, and about the media spectacularization of the social phenomenon, Europe is experiencing one of the most significant influxes of migrants and refugees in its history.


2. The new politic immigration: a global emergency or a media manipulation?



Pushed by civil war and terror and pulled by the promise of a better life, hundreds of thousands of people have fled the Middle East and Africa, risking their lives along the way (BBC News, September, 21, 2015).

The scale of the crisis has put huge pressures on some destination countries, particularly Greece, Austria, and Italy. At least 350,000 migrants crossed the European borders in January-August 2015, compared with just 280,000 during the whole of 2014. And that 350,000 figure – an estimate from the International Organization for Migration (IOM) – does not include the many who crossed a border undetected. Among the forces driving people to take such risks are the conflicts raging in Syria and Afghanistan, and human rights abuses in Eritrea. The majority – 62% – of those who have reached Europe by boat so far this year are from those three countries.

The most direct routes are fraught with danger. More than 2,600 people have drowned in the Mediterranean this year trying to reach Greece or Italy in flimsy dinghies or unsafe fishing boats. Many people travel by boat from Libya to Italy, a longer and more hazardous journey. Survivors often report violence and abuse by people traffickers, who charge thousands of dollars per person for their services. The chaos in Libya has given traffickers freedom to exploit migrants and refugees desperate to reach Europe. Many attempting to reach Germany and other northern EU countries go via the perilous Western Balkans route, running the gauntlet of brutal people traffickers and robbers. Some of the worse tragedies in 2015 include:

  • Two boats carrying about 500 migrants sank after leaving Zuwara in Libyaon 27 August;
  • A shipwreck off Italy’s Lampedusa island killed about 800 people on 19 April;
  • At least 300 migrants are feared to have drowned after attempting to cross the Mediterranean in rough seas in early February.

Under an EU rule known as the Dublin regulation, refugees are required to claim asylum in the member state in which they first arrive. But some EU countries, such as Greece, Italy, and Croatia, have been allowing migrants and refugees to pass through to countries where they have families and better prospects. Germany receives by far the most asylum applications in the EU and says it is expecting 800,000 refugees to arrive this year.

In order to match Germany’s 2015 projection per population, France would need to accept more than 650,000 people and the UK nearly the same amount. But France has pledged to accept just 24,000 and the UK 20,000 over five years. Between 2,000 and 5,000 migrants are camped around Calais, which is just 1% - 2.5% of the more than 200,000 who have landed in Italy and Greece. Hundreds of thousands of people are somewhere along the route to Germany, in Hungary, Croatia, Austria, Serbia, and elsewhere.



Germany has been critical of France and the UK over the countries' relatively meagre commitments to take people in and called on all EU members to do more. For years the EU has been struggling to harmonise asylum policy. That is difficult with 28 member states, each with their own police force and judiciary. An estimated 9 million Syrians have fled their homes since the outbreak of civil war in March 2011, taking refuge in neighbouring countries or within Syria itself. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), over 3 million have fled to Syria's immediate neighbours Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq. 6.5 million are internally displaced within Syria. Meanwhile, under 150,000 Syrians have declared asylum in the European Union, while member states have pledged to resettle a further 33,000 Syrians. The vast majority of these resettlement spots – 28,500 or 85% – are pledged by Germany.

Championing the rights of poor migrants is difficult as the economic climate is still gloomy, many Europeans are unemployed and wary of foreign workers, and EU countries are divided over how to share the refugee burden.

More detailed joint rules have been brought in with the Common European Asylum System – but rules are one thing, putting them into practice EU – wide is another challenge. They have to satisfy the authorities that they are fleeing persecution and would face harm or even death if sent back to their country of origin. Under EU rules, an asylum seeker has the right to food, first aid and shelter in a reception centre. They should get an individual assessment of their needs. They may be granted asylum by the authorities at ‘first instance’. If unsuccessful, they can appeal against the decision in court, and may win. Asylum seekers are supposed to be granted the right to work within nine months of arrival. Nearly 104,000 got refugee status in the EU last year, nearly 60,000 subsidiary protection status and just over 20,000 authorisation to stay for humanitarian reasons (BBC News, September, 21, 2015).

Trying to understand better the configuration of the unexpected movements of immigration, I discover different website on the topic, such as:


and everyone of these gives its specific viewpoint and lens about the same descriptive data. I don’t want to stop on the differences of approach to the same data, neither on how media manipulate the information given: I just wanna show how this social phenomenon is first of all a media phenomenon, and how national politics and public opinion are under the control of the social communication. The Syrian immigration, in example, which is our case study, started in the 2011, but just now, thanks to the relevance given to some specific events, like the death of Aylan, the child become the symbol of the syrian immigration, it is considered as an epocal emergency to take care of. Maybe you don’t know who is Aylan, but if you see the picture below, you immediately will understand and feel a strong sense of compassion and empathy.


Picture extracted by the Fatto Quotidiano, September, 3, 2015.


This picture has been around the world, and has been used to invite people to consider seriously the conditions of the refugees… and this is also an educational emergency, for which it might be done something more.


3. Intercultural concerns, intercultural capabilities


The concept of interculturality was born under the aegis of the prospect of global interdependence: together with solidarity towards individuals or communities in conditions of underdevelopment, it proposes solidarity with future generations, through respect of natural resources, care for ecological, social, political and cultural balances, and co-responsibility for the whole humanity. Intercultural education conceives culture as a mode of relationship and interaction, according to which it should collaborate and share resources, read and understand own and others’ needs, in a common horizon. Intercultural education is defined as education for world citizenship and for a global, other, different and intercultural identity, rather than national or social.

The terms of cross-cultural and inter-cultural are often used interchangeably, but their meanings are distinct: cross-cultural research regards the comparison between two or more different cultures, based on data obtained by observing individuals interacting with members of their own culture. Intercultural research, on the contrary, is about the comparison between two or more cultures, starting from data obtained by observing individuals of different languages and cultures interacting each other. Cross-cultural pedagogical approach allows to focus similarities of ideas, feelings, emotions, traditions, values, transcendence, etc. between cultures and is in continuity with cultural universalism, which cancels the richness of the encounter between the otherness in favor of the comparison with the One, generally the Western model.

Cross-cultural educational research proposes a model that tends to foster a vision of a-cultural education, emptying training and educational processes from specific cultural aspects risking to give a homogeneous and stereotypical reading for each country or ethnic group of reference. They propose essentially a comparative analysis, and every time seek alleged differences between ethnic groups, religions, ethnic-cultural groups who live in the same nation, or countries. The approach of inter-cultural research (Ogden, 2004; Visconti, 2004) moves exactly from the conceptual and explanatory uncertainties of cross-cultural theoretical matrix and then consists of:

- A principle of variety, that allows to valorize microcultures (Ogden, 2004), and then allows to appreciate the aspects of subjective difference that are found within the same national/ethnic/cultural group;

- A principle of individuality, because inter-cultural research observes the processes of confrontation of migrants with different cultures.

Interculturalism leads to seeking rules, rights and duties that can be applied to all cultures, to which every individual can appeal and that everyone should adhere to. Intercultural approach considers, however, cultures as shared, contested, negotiated narratives (Benhabib, 2004). This view, considering the dimension of negotiation, privileges aspects of fluidity and dynamism of cultures, emphasizes their socially constructed nature (Mantovani, 2008). The approach of intercultural research considers the change activated by intercultural encounters as a process that involves not only the migrants, but also the social context of reception (Schiavinato & Mantovani, 2005), especially the city, considered as the place of the unfolding of micropolitics, of contact and daily meetings,  and the school, considered as the first place in which everyone can play the game of the match between cultures. The intercultural pedagogy (Strollo, 2013) is based on the co-construction of knowledge in which educators and people to educate are together authors of the production of new meanings and practices (Allemann-Ghionda, 1998).

For intercultural pedagogy, the otherness, the encounter with the stranger, with the other ethnically and culturally different, represents, in comparison, an authentic reflection on the level of values, of rules and of behavior. To educate in an intercultural perspective means, therefore, operate in the process of teaching and learning the principles of intercultural education and to fully realize, tout court, the founding concepts of pedagogy (Portera, 2003) .

The first models of acculturation proposed to study the phenomenon of the encounter between cultures assumed that the relationship between immigrants and the host community is in favor of the latter and that immigrants are forced to adopt the dominant culture. Berry (1997; 2009), for the first time, proposes to deal with immigrants’ cultural identity. Immigrant and host identity are not opposites of a single dimension, but two processes that are developed separately in two dimensions, measured separately, and that enable individuals to express in a unified way different cultural aspects. According to Berry (2009), it becomes possible to define a space of intercultural contact. Immigrants in a host society have to deal with two fundamental problems: they have to decide whether their culture should be maintained or not; and they have to choose whether the relations with the host community will be sought or avoided. Consequently the two independent dimensions stressed by Berry (2009) are:

1. the preservation of immigrants’ culture (their cultural heritage or ethnic identity)

2. cultural participation and relations with other groups (desire for contact or attitude of participation Vs. the outgroup)

The articulation of these dimensions allows to describe four strategies of acculturation:

  • Integration, when immigrant wants to maintain and preserve his/her cultural identity with all its characteristics, without depriving to get in touch with different cultural groups (maintenance of cultural specificity and identity, intercultural contact/participation);
  • Assimilation, when subject thinks it’s more important to have relationships with other groups that maintain his/her own cultural identity and tradition (re-socialization into the dominant culture, failure to maintain his/her cultural and collective identity, but contact with the indigenous groups and  participation in a plural society);
  • Separation, when individual refuses and excludes contact with other cultures, limited to his/her own (maintenance of cultural specifities and identity without exchange between cultures, absence of contact/participation);
  • Marginalization, in which immigrant shows disinterest both to maintain his/her own culture and to interact with other (loss of his/her cultural specificity and identity, lack of contact/participation).

The basic idea of the model developed by Berry (2009) seems to be that of multiculturalism, that is a possible coexistence of different cultures within the same society.

More recently, it has been developed the Interactive Acculturation Model, which seeks to integrate, within a common theoretical framework, the guidelines of acculturation adopted by the host majority towards specific groups of immigrants, and the acculturation strategies adopted by immigrants within the host country and their consequences (Bourhis, Barrette, El-Geledi & Schmidt, 2009). According to Bourhis and colleagues (2009) acculturative strategies adopted by immigrants and the guidelines adopted by the host community interact, producing an ‘adaptation’ which can lead to intergroup ‘consensual’, ‘problematic’ or ‘conflictual’ relationship.

These theoretical modeling does not adequately consider fluid and dynamic characteristics of  multi-ethnic society, as the migration movements. The multiethnic society tends to be pluralistic, more readily accepts and values differences, especially through integration policies explicitly in favor of pluralism. The sociocultural adjustment, however, performs in the new global and multiethnic realities through the learning of new social resources (skills), useful to interact with the new culture. Specifically sociocultural adaptation is connected to the sphere of cognition of social learning. The more meaningful transformation in our complex society brought by digital socialization, made by social network and by the spread of technologies, is the transition from a group-centered life to a network-centered life.

Cultural identity is declined inter-culturally through the dialectic of diversity/cohesion, through a movement of integration/rejection, through the dialectic of particular/universal and of individual/community, and at least, through a permanent act of new identification.

The cultural identity of each individual is the result of the cultural variations, which are organized on the basis of original ethnic identity. Ethnic identity, then, is a kind of resource to which the migrant refers when he feels he has to do with the proposal of an ‘other’ identity, with different values from those that have assimilated in the process of socialization. The ethnic-cultural identity is complex and multidimensional and can be conceptualized as a set of attitudes, feelings and perceptions of the level of aggregation and belonging to own ethnic group, in addition to positive and negative attitudes towards the interactions ingroup/outgroup (Ting-Toomey, 2000). Daily Multiculturalism (Colombo, 2002) is the area of ‘domestication of differences’ in which there is the space for change, where social actors are seizing the opportunities, expressing small acts of resistance that often do not have long-lasting pragmatic effects. The intercultural model supports the active acceptance of diversity and of crossbreeding, and proposes a school which can ensure the widest plurality in order to achieve a mutual enrichment. This pedagogical model does not avoid conflicts arising in situations of contact between diversity, but takes them dialectically orienting to the critical understanding of reality. School in the multiethnic and multicultural society has the duty to problematize the difference between cultures to bring out the added value that is determined from the variety of proposals: this variety becomes a generating potentiality of unexplored, original and coexisting forms, languages, values and cultural signs. The lines and actions, through which the intercultural perspective in the educational process runs, can be identified (Grange, Sergi & Nuzzaci, 2007):

1 . in the proposal of subjective culture. Every culture coincides with a particular territory, in the contemporary global world boundaries are permeable and Earth is inhabited by multicultural individuals;

2 . in the performing dynamism. Culture is permeable, is not static, it tends to change over time and in a non-linear way;

3 . in the positioning of intercultural relations at the center of the educational process through which diversity (cultural, personal, social, gender, generation, ethnicity) is experienced. Shifting the focus from the content to the relationship, it’s possible to avoid to stiffen the comparison and to deconstruct prejudices, bringing citizenship education to the enhancement of all the differences and of social cohesion.

Paradigm of intercultural training is based on systemic approach and on global and complex visions of the context, as they are founding elements of the organization of knowledge (Morin, 2000).

The world is often seen as if it was a set of religions, civilizations, cultures, ignoring other identities that individuals possess and judge important, linked to social class, gender, profession, language, science, morality and politics. These concurrent affiliations determine the reality of individuals much more than unique and homologating identity does. In any context, individual has to rationally choose which of these memberships to prioritize. Freedom of choice allows to define, time to time, convergences or distances with other individuals or groups, without, however, being absorbed in a blind and omnivorous identity, that also ends up destroying all of its diversity and those of the other  (Sen, 2006). The intercultural option embodies a regulative ideal, an educational project: leaving behind the limitations and inefficiencies of a special education for migrants, it is expressed in the proposal of an educational action addressed to the whole community of the subjects.

Intercultural education is to educate and educate ourselves not only to respect. It’s to go beyond: it is trial and challenge to overcome behaviors that in cultures hinder the development of individual freedom. Before divided and contrasting cultures, there are human rights, already so wronged and offended in our own culture, and therefore there are the rights to realize own history in a subjectively aware way. That means that messages of intercultural education are designed to inspire, everywhere, the sense of self in the most radical separation of the different social, cultural or family selves, of which every society is interwoven. They too often are hindering, inhibitors and coercive more than facilitating the personal realization. It’s possible to think as an educational project to a pedagogy of difference and differences, where opportunities for reflection and acceptance of diversity are designed and promoted, where the man and woman were thought of as unitas multiplex (Morin, 2001; Schettini, 2006). The intercultural approach is proposed as a metaphor for diversity: it is a framework that provides for and allows everyone to think about diversity and about complexity of social and educational situations. The pedagogy of diversity is far from normative and ethnocentric tendencies of pedagogy: the risk is to make hypertrophic these differences, stigmatizing them and retracing the path of ‘The West versus the Rest’ of the transcultural approach. In a truly intercultural approach, the idea of culture has been replaced by the principle of cultural diversity (Aguano Odina, 2009), as the central concept of research on culture in education. Pedagogically interculturality becomes part of practices based on the relation and on communication, on the meeting and dialogue (Cambi, 2012), in the name of the complexity of segmentation and hybridity. According to Critical Pedagogy, Giroux (1992) summarises the need for making most people involved in education both as individuals and as members of communities, by calling for ‘a pedagogy of responsibility’ that educates young people simultaneously for a professional future and for critical citizenship. A pedagogy of responsibility influences politics of commitment: this encourages citizens isolated and disarmed faced with a worldwide culture of insecurity and fear. Neoliberalistic society risks that democratic values are subordinated to economic considerations, social issues are translated as private considerations, part-time replace full-time work, trade unions are weakened, and everybody is treated as a customer.  It risks also to separate politics from economic power, to destroy the public sector, and transforms everything in the image of the market.

‘Critical consciousness’ (Freire, 1970) is the fundamental axis for developing intercultural competences in a lifelong process: the ‘Pedagogies of liberation’ (Freire, 1997; 2004), means to fight limited situations of oppression, but also to recognize their universal value, because in this global economy, dominated by capitalism, the oppression is universal. There are new forms of oppression and misery in this hypermodern society, even if people think they are emancipated and free from each way or type of domination. Critical intercultural pedagogy should take care of human heterogeneity and diversity, drawing attention to group disparities (such as those based on gender, race, class, caste or age), embracing human agency and participation (by emphasising the role of practical reason, deliberative democracy and public action in giving goals, making choices and influencing policy). Different people, cultures and societies may have different values and aspirations. The issue of possibilities can also be placed in terms of capability (Saith, 2001), that is personal ability to achieve a given functioning of doing or being. There isn’t a fixed list of capabilities, but they depend on personal value judgements, by the nature and purpose of the functioning, by the opportunities offered by the context. What may education do to improve individual and intercultural capabilities? Intercultural education might develop five broad categories of instruments for freedom, which are politic freedom, economic facilities, social opportunities, transparency guarantees and protective security, and which contribute to the expansion of human capabilities (Sen, 2006). Many scholars recognized the role of the contextual (historical, social, cultural and situational) aspects, of the group and the community to promote or hinder adult learning (Merriam, Caffarella & Baumgartner, 2007). The educational work is an opportunity to access these unexpected dimensions, to start their work, and to make the experience of being also the repositories of collective conceivable inheritance, thought and generating thoughts. The construction of reality, the community, and the solutions to community problems arise from a choir, or by a group of multiple voices. The subject is a carrier of meaning, of constructions of meaning, and the space within which the individual may come to be what it is not a merely subjective sphere: the individual is embodied in a context of intersubjective strong culturally and socially meaningfulness.


4. Suggestions for educational action


The challenge in the era of the spectacularization of the migration, in which it is not enough to offer multicultural models of coexistence, is to identify and to reinforce the constants in the social processes. The only leitmotiv which seems to continue is that there’s no costaint, except the costant change, of us as part of the reality which sorrounds us.

How can we promote new kaleidoscopic intercultural identities? The trouble is something which regards and affects italian and european citizens. Well, instead of creating false myths, like those of the invasion from the northern coasts of Africa, or from the Syria, which only scare people, we can work as educators on the dimensions of informal learning.

As researcher, we are driven by what we are learning about learning, thanks to the neuroscience, which contribute in an unvaluable way to our discover about biological and neurological learning processes, thanks to the theory of the emboddied learning, which promotes an emboddied conception about learning, and thanks to both constructionist approach to reality and socio-constructional learning theory.

The neurophenomenological reading of intentionality (Strollo & Romano, 2015) emphasizes the concept of specularity, characteristic of the human being that, in the absence of action models that are based on personal experience, allows to develop action models on the basis of what he thinks that another would do in the same situation.

Human relations shape our lives even when we are unaware of it, consciousness is properly only a network connection between man and man. Only as such, consciousness was forced to develop: lonely man, man in his bestiality would not have needed it. Even in Husserl’s phenomenology (Strollo, 2014) the notion of entropathy (Einfühlung) is central, which is the ability to transfer to an organic stranger body (but recognized as analogous to own) the ‘localization’ of his psychic acts. This allocation is, however, just the first step in understanding the other and himself. Introducing another in the psychicness, I am able to recognize him in me: I transfer in the living body an objective that is before me, the localization already accomplished internally in my body, but then I bring back to me the result of the first movement: finally, I transfer me and my self enriching by the encounter and the allocation within the other body (Strollo & Romano, 2015). The inter-subjective dimension is closely related to the emotional and implicit (anonymous) dimension (Strollo & Romano, 2015). The fact that the facial expressions of anger or love is not the same in a Japanese and a western, the difference of gestures lies a difference of emotions themselves. The gesture is contingent to the body organization, but it is also the real way of welcoming the situation and to live it. Japanese angry smiles, the western blushes and stamps his foot, or pale and speaking in a strident voice. It is not enough that two conscious subjects have the same organs and the same nervous system so that the same emotions give both the same signs. What matters is the way they make use of their body, it is the simultaneous structuring of their body and their world in the emotion.

The mirror is reflected in the activation of specific neurons, mirror neurons, which, when the subjects interact with others, allow:

  • at the elementary level, to correlate the observed movements in the own ones and to recognize the meaning;
  • at more complex level, to understand the intentions and emotions of the others starting from his sensorimotor patterns (Rizzolatti & Sinigaglia, 2006).

The act of the observer is a potential act, caused by the activation of mirror neurons that can encode sensory information in motor terms and thus make possible the ‘reciprocity’ of acts and intentions, that is the basis of our immediate recognition of the meaning of the others’ gestures. Understanding others’ intentions has not here anything theoretical, but it is based on the automatic selection of the action strategies grounded on our sensorimotor heritage which are each time more compatible with the observed scenario (Rizzolatti & Sinigaglia, 2006). From these considerations, they have a strong influence on the educational theory of the trainer not only the experiences of life, which generate a gradual building of preferential neuronal circuits – the biological foundation of the generation of voluntary behavior – but also training models enjoyed as part of formal training programs, to which the trainer gazes in a mirror way in the construction of action strategies.

It is precisely the biological key that enables us to guarantee the possibility of change by promoting the preservation of the autonomy, since the specification of the neural connections is not contained in the genes, but is the result of the random interaction with the external environment.

The permanence of the connections is, however, ensured by the same genes as long as these are ‘voted helpful’ and therefore is the result of a causal process (Dennett, 2004). What happens is that the genes provide specifications for the processes that put in motion the growth of huge populations of neurons – a number of neurons of much higher than that actually will be used by our brain – and these neurons emit random explorer branches; and it happens that many of these connect to other neurons in the manner deemed useful (deemed helpful by unintentional process of brain pruning). These successful connections tend to survive, while the missed connections die, so as to be dismantled so that their parts can be recycled, a few days later, in the next generation of neuronal promising development (Dennett, 2004).

Well, if the intent associated with the values is the ability to exercise free and responsible choices among a number of possibilities ‘considered useful’, it is necessary that the mind-brain system is educated:

  • To build a plurality of paths of choice;
  • To identify and explain the reasons from which a choice emerges on the others.

The intention, in fact, finds expression in the assumption of models of voluntary action, and can not be considered as something inherent to the human being, nor the result of the simple interaction with the environment, but it is the outcome of relational processes that enable or inhibit the emancipation from the double imprisonment of ‘natural’ – related to the construction of the neuronal structure based on experience – and cultural imprinting – results of the cultural impositions, as memes (Strollo & Romano, 2015). The memes (Strollo & Romano, 2015) are cultural replicators analogous to genes, which is our dispositional knowledge, transmitted from one generation to another. It is clear that, while in a closed cultural environment, training models (memes) to which to look in a mirror way can be traced to a single theoretical matrix, in a cultural context characterized by a plurality of viewpoints and positions, the risk is to encourage syncretistic operations between conflicting positions, creating disorganized and incoherent interventions (Strollo, 2014; 2015). About this, Dennett (2004) warns against the danger that the educational process, like media information, will result in a values’ engineering that bypasses the ability of people to control their mental activities (Dennett, 2004). The self-control of our mental processes is limited and problematic anyway, so it should not surprise our difficulty in distinguishing between an engineering that bypasses our capabilities and an engineering that exploits them in so tolerable and desirable way. As long as you tell people the truth (what is considered the truth when you are communicating), you refrain from any attempt to deceive them. Until you leave them in a state from which they can make assessments of their situation as good and less independent, such as those made prior to your intervention, you are educating and probably are not making a brainwashing (Dennett, 2004).

So, in order to make people conscious (Freire, 1970) about the effects on their life of the spectacularization of the pain, and of the new geographical contexts, my suggestion is to  work on informal learning. Informal and incidental learning occurr anywhere, anytime, any place, but specifically, incidental learning is intuitive, because it happens thanks to a insight, semi-conscious, and that is particularly important about the category of intentionality in education (See also Strollo, 2008; Strollo & Romano, 2015), and natural, without structures and predetermined definitions. Informal learning is pervasive, because it is about life experience, life stories, and you can learn by doing and by making sense to your life everywhere, it is not institutionally settled. Informal learning is contextual, that means that it is linked and influenced and performed by contexts boundaries and limits and settings. Finally, informal learning is embedded, is incarnate phisically and is in relationships with the artifacts and the instruments we use, with those inscriptions that are the phisical scaffolding for knowledge.

The context is the key to understand informal learning: it occurs from and through the experience, it is intertwined with tasks, and nobody can separate it from challenge that prompts it. It is tied to processes, roles, rules and settings: that means that informal learning is in the social-interaction with the others. People share each other work practices, events, turning points, relationships, laughs and feelings, troubles, difficulties. There’s an unlimited potential in Informal Learning (Marsick, 2009), but so many doubts about how to manage it, and how to promote through pattern of informal learning experience integration between cultures. The first step is to frame the working context, that means to explore and analyze it: this frameworking triggers the interpretation of the experience, and the examination of alternative solutions. This is the diagnostic step. Finding new learning strategies means to produce the proposed solutions, assessing the intende and unintended consequences of their actions, learning new lessons: this is the solution implementation step. Sometimes there can be potential sources of error in any step, but especially in diagnostic step, with pattern of actions and possible solutions still experienced recognition: there could be an incomplete understanding of the context, or the faulty diagnosis or the lack framing. It happens just because all human beings have partial viewpoints. Furthermore, there can be errors in solution implementation step, due to limited perspectives taking, to the inventing the wrong solution, to inaccurately implementing the right solution, to failure in negotiating access and resources. Finally, in the assessment step, someone can commit mistakes for unintended or unexpected consequences, or for incorrect attributions or conclusions (Marsick, 2009; 2015).

The aim is that through the development of awareness about informal learning processes and the connections between formal and informal learning people become conscious of the manipulation around them, both socially and mediatically. Giving them courses of coscientization, we try to make them able to free themselves from their constraints, from the lies of the social media, from the cult of the appearance and the myth of the eternal youth. About critical personal capabilities, research (Dragon-Severson, 2009; 2012) indicate as basic capacities feelings of competence and confidence, like self-efficacy, and ability to be self-directed and self-regulated: they recognize autonomy to the subject, and sustain the effectiveness of instrumental knowledge of the peer group. The peer group, infact, acts like instrumental and socializing knowers that give an orientation to the others’ learning processes. What people need most is access to each kind of knowledge and material resources (Lohman, 2006; 2009), and the availability of others at the moment of learning and problem solving matters more than anything else (Eraut, 2004), and pattern recognition skills (Eraut, 2004). If we’d like to work as educators for designing programs of informal learning for supporting the encounter between cultures and the development of awareness about the role of the social media in constructing social representations and interpretations of reality, we should care about things that are or not routine.

The question is how do we design for learning that is informal, self-directed and on-the-job? Most learning is informal and on the job, and that poses a design paradox. How to formalize something which is for its same nature informal?

My suggestions are to create face-to-face programs and virtual programs of managing informal learning and connecting people coming from different cultures and nations. These programs should present time bound and goal oriented development, should be mission driven and should have concierge guided partnerships, and should have clear objectives and measured outcomes. For example, in a virtual program of informal learning (Marsick, 2009), people, also people who came from other countries, can choose the adopted language, and can be supervised through a system of mentoring. The first phase is to establish development goals, where, in example, participants to the virtual program can complete a simple on-line assessment to help to understand for themselves and the others goals, career objectives. The second phase is connecting with an experienced mentor and conducting personalized missions based upon goals, industry, role. The third phase is to track progress and to acquire skills, for working with their mentor on personalized missions to achieve specific goals and enhance their skills and experience. In the case of immigrant people, one of their missions can be to find a job, to be integrated and included in the social domains, to have all the utilities to survive. What means going deeper when learning is less routine? It means opening up space, time, one’s mind and imagination; it means exploring what is not yet recognized or put into words as presentational knowing, through story, arts, and it means tapping into other’s perspectives. The informal learning program should follow the Kolb’s Learning Cycle (1975), which consists of:

1. concrete experience, from which to start;

2. reflective observation;

3. abstract conceptualization;

4. active experimentation.

The second point, the reflective observation, is open to Liminal Transformative Reflection Cycle (Marsick, 2015): this last offers liminal space for tapping into imaginative knowing and other’s perspectives. The reflective observation requires critical reflection, about content of the premises and processes of the construction of viewpoints and perspectives; it requires considering alternative perspectives, and challenging assumptions with critical self-reflection.

When people are highly motivated, organizations get results when they get out of the way and let people take charge of their own learning, but they need to provide supports and remove barriers. The social and organizational factors which impact on informal learning programs are trust, culture, structure and communication, leadership and management: to promote self-confidence in a democratic and multicultural culture has a great effect on managing informal learning. Also a circular structure and communication system, which is not centralized, favors the self-expression and the creation of a network of knowledge.

This kind of programs poses some challenges, such as openness to ambiguity, in one’s own learning and in the environment, as ability to see and change biases and assumptions (according to a ladder of inference), as negotiating power differences. Other challenges are working across boundaries, rewarding the right things, and scaling up without ‘over-formalizing’ or controlling individual choice. The work with Informal Learning is fundamental to pursuit the coscientization (Freire, 1970) about the effects of the advertisement of the pain and the overexposition of the private on the construction of our identity. As educators, we ought to promote a work also on the emotional sphere. Goleman (1996) speaks in this context of an emotional literacy (Goleman, 1996, p. 310), which teaches a core of basic social and emotional skills, such as control of aggression and anger, and encourages them to find creative solutions to difficult social and life situations. Emotional Literacy culminates in the ability to recognize the feelings, emotions and to build vocabulary for their verbalization. Self-awareness is to grasp the links between thoughts, feelings and reactions, whether it is making a decision based on thoughts or feelings, predict the consequences of alternative choices, apply this knowledge to decisions on significant issues, explore alternatives to conflict and violence as solutions to hardships and conflicts. Finally, it is acquiring skills to deal with fear, tension, anxiety, sadness, and to understand what is behind an emotion or a feeling. Our society is terrified by the idea of suffering and proposed an emotionalism aimed at immediate pleasure and easier and direct gratification, emotional literacy proceeds as part of the training of the students, with their social and moral growth, as well as civic. To achieve these objectives, the teaching laboratory and the ‘heuristic’ methods will reveal the most appropriate: in the teaching laboratory and research, students are encouraged to solve problems, problem-solving, but also to ask the same questions and problems, problem-posing, through the comparison between collaborative partners. With these teaching methods, students learn to study, to organize the problematic situations, to work together and reflect, to take the initiative and postpone the time for action. They learn to learn together, to develop their talents and contribute to the group learning (Marsick, 2015).


5. Conclusions


We are probably yet in the midst of a relational collective and shared disorder, for which it requires to take action with an educational and proactive mission. The experience of self, physical and psychological, is reduced to mere externals, forgetting its skills, motivation, and emotional awareness of internal states. Whereas before the individual because of the respect for the laws of society was induced to repress pleasure and enjoyment, now the viewer is forced to enjoy following the rules of trash and kitsch. The pedagogy of the relationships, of the meeting with all forms of otherness, of dialogue, of the difference and the differences could establish itself as a sentimental education in any educational setting, formal, non-formal and informal, is coloured with emotions and motivations, and educates the emotions.

Educational practice can take charge of education to emotions and creativity, primarily within the family system, where access to the emotional dimension and the coding of emotions allows the development of awareness, listening skills and empathy and trust in the signals and information processed by the emotional processes. The ‘emotional deafness’ to which we are exposed prevents the deep understanding of the other that would minimize conflicts, injuries, negatives, allowing openness and dialogue, availability and flexibility, honest challenge and coevolution in the intersubjective encounter. Common sense and steril mechanisms lead to stay rather than being, to stagnate rather than becoming.

The biggest challenge for adult learning is to educate civil solidarity and social responsibility, without destroying irreplaceable dignity of the individual, but addressing a renewed planetary humanism (Strollo, Romano, Volpe & Hu, 2015) and the principle of complexity that holds together unity and diversity. The emphasis is on the ongoing process of recognition of the other forms of destruction, of abuse, of dehumanization. The educational practices of dialogue play empathetic identification with each other and building re-construction of a self-dialogue in progress in co-evolution with the surrounding reality and in the encounter with the other and otherness. In a dialogic approach to education, human beings are seen as people involved in the process of growing and becoming, and found in the contradictory dialectic of self-other relationship the opportunity to develop and grow.

Rejecting the common hypothesis that academic work should be separate from the operations of the policy, it is necessary to claim the role of the intellectual as a social actor committed and pedagogy as a social responsibility. Academics have a particularly important role to play as public intellectuals engaged in this particular historical moment. One of the most dangerous problems now is the spread of neo-liberalism, with its emphasis on the consumer market relations, marketing, privatization and the creation of a working part-time or casual work world economy. Under the reign of neoliberalism, citizens lose their public voices. A pedagogy of responsibility influence a policy of engagement: it tries to encourage citizens isolated and disarmed to face a global culture of insecurity and fear.

In the classroom, the adult, as the late teens, should have the opportunity to question and to tell the life, concerning most contradictory aspects, deepening it, enriching its knowledge in an interplay between formal-informal and non-formal. The life events must be integrated originally in the context of the values, beliefs, communication procedures, shared by the group, be a contextual and/or territorial reality, through the conscious appropriation and creative reworking of the symbolic systems of culture reference, which does not necessarily have to follow so conformist. The university and the culture that become active teach a look on other things and the world, and they do it through emotional education, emotional education to the imagination, and to its image: the imagination is the instrument necessary to revive the wonder at things, to read the depth of the world, to explore all possible alternatives to the mainstream educational models.

The spectacularization of the pain is a kind of collective narrative of the suffering: this narrative are set in a social background, and they reveal the social processes from which it emerges the general and social illness. The network of the social capital, the culture of referrence, the power relationships, everything is first of all a social act which draws out from a social interaction. So, that means that before talking about the media spectacularization we ought to reflect upon identity processes, considering that people are catched in a society of appearing and of appearance, where there’s no space for the essential and the existential. Today we are confronted with an overexposing of the pain, which is a way to ask a subjective construction of meaning for something which is completely showe as objectivated. The suffering seems to be incommunicable, there’s no tolerance of the frustration and of the difficulty, so every sort of pains should be avoid, forclosed, it couldn’t exist, and so it should be kept silent. At the same time, the pain requires time for being worked, and elaborated, takes time and energy for making sense of it, and avoiding the processes of doing this, we run the risk of an unsustainable commodification of our feelings. Recently, a popular animation movie called “Inside Out” (2015), talks about the emotional development of a baby from her birth to her adolescence. Specifically, the movie has been useful to stress the importance for human development of an emotional educational, based on the principles of the emotional literacy (Goleman, 1996), in order to recognize negative and positive emotions and the coexistence of different emotions together. The challenge is not evading the pain, but being able to match the pain with the happiness, accepting it and accepting all the experiences of human life without fighting against them. The spectacularization of the pain, without the corresponding mental process of working the sadness and the suffering, goes through the emboddied experience of the diseases and of the dissatisfaction for our life: this is the counterpart of the phenomenon. The body becomes a phenomenological biography to tell about suffering and displeasures, and this determines also the increasing rising of the number of the ill people of cancer. But the spectacularization is a way of instrumentalizing the information that affects not only the emotions and the pain, but also the political events and the global phenomena.

In an era characterized by the generalist television, one of the phenomena of international consumption became the sort of maximalism that emphasizes everyday problems such as ‘war of the worlds’, where you have to take in a programmatic way the opinions and attitudes of political leaders. Each phenomenon is swallowed up by the army of preachers of the media, which provide air of neocon made of superficiality and arrogance (Ambrosi, 2006). The discomfort of contemporary civilization needs understanding even before care, needs to be questioned and meaning. Pedagogic instruments can return to a re-appropriation of the meaning of life in the sense of common destiny that humanity is played against the individual and collective suffering. The reconciliation with the pain is a constituent of life, is the condition of acceptance of our mortality, the inevitability of death and suffering, the awareness that we are not invincible and immortal. The spectacularization of the pain is a death anxiety which couldn’t be exposed as mass phenomenon. Through informal learning, working with own experiential background, it becomes possible to accept the pain as a natural law, fundamental part of human life.



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