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Anya Lewin, How to Be European

Imagine a school where one learns how to be European in a changing Europe. Migration flows from East to West to East again. The EU is growing, yet doesn’t include every “European” country. It is getting more and more complicated to understand what European is and most importantly how to act European? In 1974 the sociologist Erving Goffman published his book Frame Analysis, which examined the way behaviour changes depending on the context. In a classroom we know how to act as teacher and student; can we extend this idea to Europe? When countries enter the frame of the EU do they become European?

The six lessons were inspired by Lewin’s Bulgarian Language lessons with Boris Angelov from the Mastylo school in Plovdiv. The lessons question who learns and who teaches and whether European identity exists for anyone but Americans? The work uses a mixed methodology of pre–written Socratic dialogues, bad acting, experimental visual techniques, educational television, obscure references and poetic news reading and covers concepts such as time, language, economics, flow and mobility, dog watching, and cultural presentation.

This project was made during a 3 month residency at InterSpace in Sofia, Bulgaria as part of the At Home in Europe Project. Please be warned that the lessons may now be past their sell by date.

To see more of Anya Lewin's work please visit her web site.

This video recordings is being made available for noncommercial and educational use only. All rights to this recorded material belong to Anya Lewin. © 2011. Used with the permission of Anya Lewin. Distributed by PennSound.