Movement has been the main theme of the 20th century. Artists were determined to represent it in their works. Speed became a component of beauty and of a futuristic ideal. Film appeared as a form of art representing images in movement. Advances in technology allowed man to travel the planet in a much shorter period of time and even transformed his way of life.
The 21st century, on the other hand, is replete with paradoxes, such as freedom and ease of movement contrasted with the phenomena of displaced persons and border closures. The myth of globalization, of a world in continuous change, stops in the face of thousands of persons fleeing war and poverty, seeking a new place to start their lives and rebuild their families. As progress in the world of information and of technology promotes global equality, we encounter a stark contrast with the rise in present-day social inequalities. The great revolution in mobile communication is leading us, in many cases, to an increasing individualism and social isolation. Speed seems to limit knowledge and depth in relationships, fostering superficiality.
For these reasons, we need to reflect on the phenomenon of “mobility” and its consequences. We need to listen with utmost attention and understanding to those who are suffering the drama of war and hunger in their countries of origin. The countless sicknesses and difficulties of millions of refugees require a direct response of charity to help them recover their dignity.
Although the growing digital world is full of opportunities, it is also full of risks and dangers for the person who hides behind the screen and, without knowing it, makes himself incapable of connecting with other persons.
All of this leads us to ask: What are we supposed to do in order to make this world a bit more “human”? What can we do in order to ensure that social relations remain at a human and personal level and allow the growth of the person? What characteristics should mobility have in the future? What should its limits be?
These and other questions will be the points of investigation and reflection this Univ Forum 2017, a call to all university students who are determined to influence society and change the world.
The theme of the 50th Univ Forum 2017 is
A World in Movement:
The drama of migration and melting identity in a digital world
Rome, 9 - 16 April 2017