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    #1

    The Fiction of Reality, part one

    My text does not pretend to be a scientific article or sociological essay. It is rather my thoughts which I gathered with the goal to practice English.
    Would you please correct my mistakes?

    Once I met a young American student. She asked me what I thought about Sweden. When I told her, she blushed and burst out, “If Sweden is so bad, what are you doing here?” I told her I had come here as a refugee because of the war in Bosnia. At that time, I had no choice. I was running to save my life. She was not satisfied with my answer and shook her blond head in disagreement. I returned home angry with myself. Why did I try to explain to her something which she did not want to hear? She had travelled a long way and invested a large amount of money to be in the country which is seen as one of the most advanced and most liberal in the world. And I had told her she had arrived in a totalitarian state, although there was no visible political oppression and no political prisoners like in other totalitarian states. I explained to her the way the Swedish government controls its population by subtle means and keeps it submissive. She did not like my explanation and gave me a hard stare. She snorted and walked away without a word, probably believing I was a madman who should be locked up in a mental institution instead of spreading lies and propaganda against one of the greatest countries in the word.

    This encounter had such a profound effect on me that I never again talked to a stranger. My mind ordered me to ignore them, even if there was a possibility that some of them would listen to me and appreciate my thoughts. But I had no right to blame other people. I was not an authority; I did not have a high university degree in front of my name; my books could not be found in library shelves; I was not on TV. I was insolent to bite the hand that feed me.
    I asked myself if I were on a trial, what my defence could be. What kinds of experiences during these decades had affected my mind, that I could express such opinion which caused other people to wince? My mind rebelled against manipulation. It screamed like a tortured prisoner, “I am free! Nobody has the right to control me. You cannot bribe me with your money, your cars, your beautiful women or other things. I am beyond your narrow-minded politics and ridiculous ideas. I am part of the endless and boundless Universe.”
    What the young American student had experienced, the psychologists call cognitive dissonance. She did not like what she heard, and that made her uncomfortable. She wished to get rid of me and regain her equilibrium.

    But let us assume I was a manipulator interesting in her supple body. My approach would be different to the first one. I would ask her about her hometown, and if she, for example, told me she was from Chicago, to open the door a crack to her mind, I would say, “How interesting! The Bosnian writer Aleksandar Hemon lives in your hometown. He is so successful, and imagine, he writes in English.” Gradually, I would make more connection between the two countries and tell her how grateful we Bosniaks were that the US finally had come to our rescue and save us from extermination. I would be observant how our conversation progressed, and I would offer to show her around the town, to visit with her tourist attractions, galleries and museums. If I managed to get her phone number, my chances of success would be high.
    To impress her, I would invite her to a restaurant where I knew both the owner and the staff who would crack jokes with me, and we would drink the best wine and eat some great food. Even if I never managed to get her in bed, she would still had a nice experience and probably remember me as a kind and generous gentleman. I was the same person, but my words had created two different pictures of me in the eyes of the young student. In the first version, I was a bitter, ungrateful foreigner who should return to the Balkans where people behave like barbarians, and in the second version, I was a kind man who was attracted by her and gave her much attention, which flattered her. Understandably, she preferred my second version, although they both were fiction - products of her mind.
    TO BE CONTINUED
    Last edited by Bassim; 12-Apr-2016 at 14:48.

  1. Tarheel's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    There are not many errors, but there are a few.

    First paragraph. Say:

    Why did I tell her something she did not want to hear?

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    #3

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    Say:

    one of the greatest countries in the WORLD.

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    #4

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    Second paragraph. Don't university degrees usually come AFTER the name? (Example: Thomas Sowell, Ph.D.)

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    #5

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    Say:

    My books could not be found ON library shelves.

    Also:

    I was insolent to bite the hand that FED me.

    Space between paragraphs.

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    #6

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    Tarheel,

    Would it be correct if if rephrase the above sentence like this:

    I did not have a high university degree beside my name.

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    #7

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    Say:

    I asked myself what my defense would be if I were on trial.

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    #8

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    Tarheel,

    Would it be correct if if rephrase the above sentence like this:

    I did not have a high university degree beside my name.
    No, use "after" there. Degrees (M.A., B.A., B.S., Ph.D.) always come the name.

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    #9

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    Say:

    such opinions

    OR

    an opinion

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    #10

    Re: The Fiction of Reality, part one

    The universe is pretty big, but it still doesn't get capitalized.

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