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Longhurst begins with one of the themes appearing on the matter of cultural studies — the relationship between geography and identity. It is culturally embodied within us to return to our homeland and often people who have resettled in another country never entirely feel at home. No matter where in the world a person is living currently, he will always be invisibly tied to his native country.
He goes on further explaining that even though they are a product of imagination, nations are not illusion as they have the power do drive us into action, divide and unite us. The key elements, we remember about our countries are the national flag and the location of borders.
We know perfectly how the country looks like and where it is located on the world map. This is indeed what I remembered in my earliest years in primary school.
When I was little, looking at the world map, those big unknown countries meant nothing to me. The minute I saw mine, I knew it was home, where everything familiar was and it was the best place to live. I thought I would travel a lot but never live anywhere else. As I was growing up every aspect of my nationality, be it traditional music, classic books, clothing, the way we socialise — it was all taken for granted.
It was only after I left to live and study in London that I realised what Bulgaria and being Bulgarian really meant. I felt nostalgic even for the smallest things — like the newspapers I never read, the books in our living room, the art, the speech on the streets, the way we understand rach other.
Suddenly everything became so important, I rediscovered what I was just accepting without appreciating. As Longhurst says it himself, we are geographically connected to our culture and identity. I never thought how excited and happy it will make me seeing our Cyrillic typography or my national flag in London.
I suppose, the point I am trying to make is that you can never fully understand, value and critique your own cultural and national identity until you have been placed in an environment excluding every familiar notion you are otherwise exposed to inside the borders of your homeland.
INTRODUCING CULTURAL STUDIES BRIAN LONGHURST PDF
Introducing Cultural Studies