Lower East Side Tenement Museum in New York City

17 April 2023 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Living, Working, Building, Museums, Exhibitions, New York City Reading Time:  16 minutes

© flickr.com - ajay_suresh/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – ajay_suresh/cc-by-2.0

The Lower East Side Tenement Museum, located at 97 and 103 Orchard Street in the Lower East Side neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City, is a National Historic Site. The museum’s two historical tenement buildings were home to an estimated 15,000 people, from over 20 nations, between 1863 and 2011. The museum, which includes a visitors’ center, promotes tolerance and historical perspective on the immigrant experience.   read more…

Israeli development towns

25 August 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  9 minutes

Or Yehuda © Oyoyoy/cc-by-sa-4.0

Or Yehuda © Oyoyoy/cc-by-sa-4.0

Development towns were new settlements built in Israel during the 1950s in order to provide permanent housing for a large influx of Jewish immigrants from Arab countries, Holocaust survivors from Europe and other new immigrants (Olim), who arrived to the newly established State of Israel. The towns were designed to expand the population of the country’s peripheral areas while easing pressure on the crowded centre. Most of them were built in the Galilee in the north of Israel, and in the northern Negev desert in the south. In addition to the new towns, West Jerusalem was also given development town status in the 1960s. In the context of the Arab–Israeli conflict, Jewish refugees from Arab states were initially resettled in refugee camps, known variously as immigrant camps, ma’abarot and development towns. Development towns were subsequently considered by some to be places of relegation and marginalisation in often remarkable architectural monotony, with a strong reference and a mixture of socialist classicism and modernism, which is reminiscent of the socialist orientation of the state after its foundation and gives the new citizens from the former Soviet Union a feeling of coming home, but with better weather. Many towns gained a new influx of residents during the mass immigration from former Soviet states in the early 1990s. By 1998, 130,000 Russian-speaking immigrants lived in development towns. Despite businesses and industries being eligible for favorable tax treatment and other subsidies, with the exception of Arad, most of the towns (particularly those in the south) have fared poorly in the economic sense, and often feature amongst the poorest Jewish Areas in Israel. However, this is not due to the cities or their locations, but to the fact that around 50% of ultra-Orthodox men in particular did not invent work, which affects the productivity of entire neighborhoods / districts or even complete cities, which in turn is detrimental to the Israeli economy as a whole. In 1984, the Development Towns project was awarded the Israel Prize for its special contribution to society and the State of Israel. For architecture enthusiasts, on the other hand, they are more of an impertinence than study objects.   read more…

The European Union: Migration debate, xenophobia, racism, religious hostilities, LGBTQIA+ hostilities, antisemitism and right-wing extremism

2 February 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Editorial, EU blog post series, European Union Reading Time:  2049 minutes

Flag of Europe (Latest update: 23 August 2022) It is actually unbelievable: the wall fell, fortunately the Soviet Union failed in its own right, as a result of which most of the Eastern Bloc gained its freedom. There was great hope for democracy, freedom and the rule of law. Especially in the eastward expansion of the EU, which only knows freedom from history lessons, the hope for freedom and democracy was huge. It is all the more surprising that parts of the populations have once again been seduced by nationalist demagogues. From the east, this nationalistic nonsense finally arrived in East Germany, which was formerly part of the Eastern Bloc. Where the journey will eventually lead to remains open by now. It will certainly not be pleasing for a while. Overall, this blog can be understood as “counter medicine”, especially since it becomes clear that there can be “the best and most beautiful place in the world” individually, but that there is actually a very large number of “best and most beautiful places in the world”. One can hold monologues for hours on this or just let a lot of photos and films speak for themselves. In order to make clear that hatred and extremism are anything but the norm, on the contrary, they are abnormalities, this article was created, which bundles various forms of abnormalities on the one hand and thus on the other hand seperates them from normality shown in our other blog entries. The dramatically accumulating “individual cases”, which they are obviously not, were also reason enough to refute the myth of the “lone wolf” (individual perpetrator). It is much more a question of failure of society as a whole. Entire networks are behind the perpetrators, often enough in so-called “social media”, which, however, are anything but that.   read more…

Statue of Liberty in New York City

8 November 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, New York City, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  8 minutes

© flickr.com - William Warby/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – William Warby/cc-by-2.0

The Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World) is a colossal neoclassical sculpture on Liberty Island in New York Harbor in New York, in the United States. The copper statue, a gift from the people of France to the people of the United States, was designed by French sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi and its metal framework was built by Gustave Eiffel. The statue was dedicated on October 28, 1886.   read more…

German Emigration Center in Bremerhaven

8 October 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, European Union, Museums, Exhibitions Reading Time:  4 minutes

© PhilippN/cc-by-sa-3.0

© PhilippN/cc-by-sa-3.0

The German Emigration Center (German: Deutsches Auswandererhaus) is a museum located in Bremerhaven, Germany dedicated to the history of German emigration, especially to the United States. It is Europe’s largest theme museum about emigration. Visitors can experience the emigration process through interactive exhibits. The museum also provides access to databases of immigration records. The museum with a area of 4200 square meters opened on August 8, 2005. The design for the museum came from the Hamburg architecture studio Andreas Heller.   read more…

The museums island Ellis Island

17 May 2014 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, New York City, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks Reading Time:  10 minutes

Ellis Island, as seen from Liberty Island © Daniel Schwen/cc-by-sa-3.0

Ellis Island, as seen from Liberty Island © Daniel Schwen/cc-by-sa-3.0

Ellis Island, in Upper New York Bay, was the gateway for millions of immigrants to the United States as the nation’s busiest immigrant inspection station from 1892 until 1954. The island was greatly expanded with land reclamation between 1892 and 1934. Before that, the much smaller original island was the site of Fort Gibson and later a naval magazine. The island was made part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument in 1965, and has hosted a museum of immigration since 1990. A 1998 United States Supreme Court decision found most of the island to be part of New Jersey. The south side of the island, home to the Ellis Island Immigrant Hospital, is closed to the general public and the object of restoration efforts spearheaded by Save Ellis Island. The island has been closed to the public since Hurricane Sandy in October 2012 with re-opening date at some point of 2014.   read more…

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