Posts Tagged ‘culture’


Valle D’Aosta, Italy © Jim Korpi

“Who wants to wake up at 4 am and milk cows when you have two degrees from a university?” An Italian friend asks over a beer.
Dairy farms throughout the north of Italy have been hiring Indians to run their milking operations. “Italians don’t want to do the work,” a dairy farmer told me. The conversation starts with the subject of immigrants, a common discussion in today’s Europe. In a country priding itself on the value of food and ingredients, there is a fading value placed on the work done by those who bring about such necessities.

clash of cultures

Cell Phone Market, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia © Jim Korpi

“I was at my grandfather’s funeral when my boss called,” Mohammed recollected of a moment when his employer phoned him in Riyadh from London. “He knew I was at a funeral but proceeded to ask me where my timesheets were.”

“After the funeral I took the week off to be with my family. By the end of the week my wife was delivering our baby. I took the next week off from work to help with my new child. When I returned to work my boss called from the main office in London and said, ‘You’re not focusing on your work. You should be answering your phone and checking your email!'”