PRESENT AND VOTING
Present Special: Answering Your Questions About University Life and Boğaziçi
We have gathered some questions about university life and Boğaziçi University that you have submitted through our Instagram Stories (@bogazicimun). Do not forget to follow and turn on the notifications to catch up on our following Q&A during the University Selecting Period to ask more of your questions! Let’s move on to the answers to your questions!
Academic Pressures: Are We Being Assigned Too Much Homework?
We, as students, have been getting our education under extraordinary circumstances for over a year now because of the pandemic. When we say it is a different experience from what we are used to, and it is hard to adapt to what is necessary when it comes to online school, it can be applicable to students of all ages, from kindergarten to university. Everyone knows we should keep on studying, as we still do not know how long this pandemic will last, and we cannot press pause on life altogether. However, this does not mean that this progress is easy to adapt to. It is time we finally talk about not all, but some of our teachers’ and professors’ lack of empathy at this time, which comes with mental and psychological difficulties on the students’ side.
The Masked Bandits: Raccoons as Pets?
Raccoons are animals native to the North American forests. They are very intelligent and skilled, which makes them a versatile species. They are famous for their beautiful furs and masked faces, which gave them the reputation of being thieves. Still, this reputation is not wrong at all. Thanks to their intelligence and speed, they can often be found sneaking food from people or houses. Although they have adapted to urban life, they remain as wild animals which can carry many diseases, including rabies.
Academic Pressures: Are We Being Assigned Too Much Homework?
We, as students, have been getting our education under extraordinary circumstances for over a year now because of the pandemic. When we say it is a different experience from what we are used to, and it is hard to adapt to what is necessary when it comes to online school, it can be applicable to students of all ages, from kindergarten to university. Everyone knows we should keep on studying, as we still do not know how long this pandemic will last, and we cannot press pause on life altogether.
Being Apolitical: A Conundrum
It seems like politics is the only topic we can have a conversation on these days because of how salient the political agenda is and how infiltrative and effective it is to an average person’s life. However, the question is, how do we have a conversation about politics? If you are just simply commenting on an objective change in your life resulting from some political action, does that qualify as being political? Do we have to be activists to call ourselves political?
The Uncertain Fate of Cishet White Men in The Western World Going Forward
"Enough." So were the words of one queer person who responded to my question on what they thought of cishet white men. They were, in fact, the only person to respond to my question, which was not surprising considering I spent a grand total of 45 seconds looking for queer people to answer my question. Despite the apparent lack of depth of my study group, I believe I have produced a good approximation of the opinions of most queer people.
Rising Tensions at Boğaziçi: Pluralist Democracy vs. Absolute Democracy
For those of our readers who are not familiar with the term pluralist and absolute democracy; pluralist democracy is a political system where organized groups compete with each other to influence the policy instead of one single group dominating the politics(1) , whereas absolute democracy is a hypothetical form of government where the needs and wants of the majority are prioritized, and the minorities are neglected(2) . As the protests continue in Boğaziçi University as well as in other parts of Turkey, we witness the lack of plurality in Turkish democracy.
Fiction as a Political Tool: Hate Propaganda vs. Freedom of Expression
İdil ÇAKMUT & Hülya AFAT
Unlike fairytales, 21st-century lives are unfortunately not that simple nor amusing. Besides our individual problems, there are so many external issues that occupy our minds all day long: Economy, politics, never-ending wars, violence, chaotic debates… As we are living in an age of the Internet and super technology, it is nearly impossible to stay away from the harsh realities completely; however, within the development of our modern world, have we totally lost our exit to a free space where we can clear our minds and calm ourselves?
Hobbes: A Liberal Theorist or an Advocate of Absolutism?
Thomas Hobbes is one of the most renowned philosophers of all time. He is especially known for the concept of social contract theory which he developed in his book the Leviathan. In its simplest terms, Hobbes’ version of social contract theory states that individuals were in a state of war before the establishment of states. In this “natural state”, there were no rules governing who owned what, so fighting and killing each other was the only option left for people to survive and get what they want.
Extreme Comfort In The Nordic Countries:Is It Fairy Tale or Fact?
“I wish I was born in one of the Nordic countries, everything would be much easier.”, “Is this even a ‘life’ when compared to the lives of the Nordic people?”, “They do not have any problems up in the North, they live in an amazingly comfortable environment.”. These are just some example sentences that most of us hear in our lives.
The In-Between Generation: Gen X’s Destiny To Be Ignored
The term generation X comes from the novel Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture by Douglas Coupland. Generation X refers to the generation born between the early-to-mid 1960s and early 1980s and is also called the ‘latchkey’ generation because gen X was left in the house by their working parents.
Malthus and Overpopulation: Miscalculated Future of Earth
Economics may seem all about calculations and money, however, forecasting the global economic climate and using those calculations to foresee the possible crises form the majority of economics. The methods and models are used in this process, and to develop these methods and models, data from the past economic activities are used.
Do We Really Need a Maximum Age Limit on Voting?
Voting to elect the leaders who will govern us for an established time is one of the greatest and longest steps we ever took as a species. This mindset took an incredibly long time to settle and it took an even longer time for us to realize this process was only ethical if we allowed anyone older than 18 to participate in it.
Silencing The Intolerant to Make Way for Free Speech: The Paradox of Tolerance
Free speech has undeniably become one of the chief virtues of western democracies as the last few centuries progressed. Historically, it was not a very feasible policy in general because of various factors, but as democratic processes and human rights developed, free speech became an increasingly valid constituent of the overall status of development of any given country.
Something Is Not Right With Today’s Activism
Activism is defined as the practice of vigorous action or involvement as a means of achieving political or other kinds of goals. The said vigorous acts can take many forms such as protests, demonstrations, public speech; in shorter words, they can be any act that is done with the intention to make a change.
Questioning Foreign Intervention's Legitimacy
When we hear another country is somehow intervening in the internal affairs of another country, we are generally inclined to perceive this as a big problem. Foreign intervention is seen as a concept that is always problematic which disrupts the natural set of events. In this article, I want to question whether there can be some instances and conditions that make foreign intervention legitimate.
Boomer Professors vs Millennials: Who should be teaching who?
Can we separate someone’s profession from their personality and life views, especially when they work in education? If those opinions are about denying someone else’s basic human or educational rights, such as homophobia, racism, sexism, transphobia, ableism; and these opinions cause discrimination during education, those opinions cannot be categorized as a personal view. After all, people mark their contributions to the fields with their names as we see when we talk about Newton physics or Aristotelian logic.
Dearest Companions of Humanity: Ethics of Pet Ownership
Since the dawn of time humanities ability to tame animals had been one of its core abilities. We domesticated animals to eat them, ride them, and to put them on to work. The domestication of our canine and feline friends was a different story though what started as just a mutually benefiting relationship turned wolves and wildcats into our fluffy friends over the years. Although this seems like a really positive outcome there are still some questions we need to ask ourselves.
Why Do Governments Fail to Provide for Their People?
Very commonly, throughout almost all the countries in the world, some people think that the government will not work to protect their best interests. It would be nothing special if people thought this way rarely, for some specific cases, yet this is not the case. It is not at all uncommon for people to assume that no action of their own governments will bring benefit to the common folk. Some will even go so far as to claim that the government is inherently harmful to the general populace.
Ok, Boomer: Intergenerational Relations and Unsolicited Advice
Alp Ünal AYHAN
“Ok, Boomer” marks the end of friendly generational relations, says Taylor Lorenz on the New York Times. There is a significant truth to that, as there is a growing negative sentiment against older generations among the late Millennials and Zoomers. This is mainly due to the deepening inequalities, increasing exposure of existing disparities, differences in attitude towards different social groups, and the conflicting views on global climate change.
Coronavirus and Airlines
Şebnem YAREN & Kaan ERTAN
Since its outbreak in March 2020, the Coronavirus pandemic has affected our lives in more ways than we have imagined. Unfortunately, it is still going strong and infecting more people as we speak. One of the many ways that the virus halted our lives is the limited traveling. People had to limit, if not cancel most of their traveling plans to stay safe and healthy.
The Debate Behind Cultural Appropriation
Recently Ateez, a Kpop band, released a new album, ZERO: FEVER. For this new album, they created a poll for their fans to choose the title track of it. Two songs were the nominees: Thanxx and Inception. In the music video trailers of Thanxx, the lead singer of the band wears cornrows, a hairstyle that is generally associated with African Americans.
The Rising Aggressivity of Conservatism: A Story of Resurgence
As the world faced unseen horror through the hands of the Axis powers in World War 2, disdain towards the far-right ideologies of the Axis became commonplace among both the common populace and influential political actors. At the time the war was nearing its end, countless people on both sides had fostered a newfound disgust for those ideologies.
Sexism and Gender-Based Crimes:
With A Special Focus on Women’s Struggles
Today’s day and age have many celebratory elements to it. It consists of humankind’s massive contributions to the world and the universe we live in to learn more about it, as well as to preserve and cherish it. However, these constant positive and uplifting developments do not cover-up the inhumane, unethical, unjust, and unscrupulous acts we, unfortunately, do to each other and to the world.
Politics Are Healing: Approving the Successful and Disapproving the Failed
In an ideal political landscape, politicians represent and serve the public. So, when they fail their mission of providing welfare and peace, the public is supposed to vote them out. This statement assumes the individuals are rational, they are aware of their own benefits, and they act according to their benefits.
A Threat to Economic Growth: Declining Birth Rates
We are inclined to think that bigger populations cause complicate fast economic growth. However, this kind of approach ignores how dependent our production and consumption is to the size of the population. With decreasing birth rates in the developed nations, our economic system now faces a vast threat. For centuries, we have organized our economies in a way that depends on fast population growth. Statistics show that for the following decades this trend will have to change.
Sustainable Development During Coronavirus: The Time to Champion or Disclaim the SDGS
As of 2020, we had moved to a new decade in which the international community had high hopes for the world's sustainable future. And 2020 was marked as the beginning of a Decade of Action towards the Sustainable (1) Development Goals (SDGs).
Online Education: Effective or Harmful?
Şebnem YAREN & İrem BIYIKLI
Online education is a teaching method consisting of computerized lectures and assignments which began to popularize slowly, with the rapid spread of the Covid- 19 pandemic. Now, people are discussing whether this type of education can be used after the pandemic or not.
Role of Income Inequality in Rising Populism
Understanding the concept of income inequality is essential for understanding the recent political and economic trends throughout the world. It has been argued by scholars that income inequality is one of the leading factors why we observe a trend in the rise of populist leaders.