Competition year: 2004
About Enmar & The Hawk .
Two people, two nations, two cultural civilizations, fight each other on the very edge of the water at low tide. The tide, stained with the pollution of their war, soon begins to flow about them. Ignorant of the rising waves around them, so focused on their adversary that prevailing is their only concern, they will drown together. An observant outsider will offer them words of warning, attempt to alert them to their imminent and mutual destruction, but nothing will come of it. Both warriors know what they are facing, the principles and ideals they defend in the face of their opponent are important enough, and so they choose to risk all. This is the nature of principles, of loyalty, of the hope embodied in such a struggle – they leave very little place for reasoning other than their own.
In many ways the two struggling are closer to each other than the detached observer. They fight for the same cause, the same piece of land, the same hope for the same future. They could relate to each other’s urgency and fear in another forum, in another time. They both hold their struggle as of critical importance, and no outsider will be able to effectively communicate with either of them before showing respect and understanding to their feelings and motivation. Even though they’re so similar to each other, there’s no such understanding between them. Both have demonized the other to such an extent that they cease to exist as human beings, and exist only as the evil which they fight
People with ideas that seem strange to us have a reason and a tradition to support them. We don’t have to agree with these ideals, but they deserve genuine interest and respect, to be understood. We must remember that our ideas are not as trivial as they seem to us – they’re just as strange for people confronted with them for the first time. This way conflicts will be what they really are – deep, bitter and critical disagreements, but not an open war with our ultimate devils.
The border lines that define these devils, as drawn between ethnic groups, religions, political powers and civilizations, typically overlap – we will use the term ‘cultures’ to describe them, but we mean the complex entities that have these things in common despite other differences. In every culture, these ideas come together to take on an ideal form, their common vision of Utopia.
Even the word itself – Utopia - betrays its origins. The word is a Latin term, meaning 'no-land', where ‘land’ is used in the political sense. Political lands continue to exist only in comparisons and by contrast, not as entities unto themselves. 'No land' translates into an absence of contradiction, of the political ‘other’ – only one land, one grand political entity, that will turn obsolete and disappear. We are told that the way to realizing any utopia is not easy, for it would already exist if not so difficult to attain. The road to utopia is paved with painful compromise and bitter sobering, and the very concept of ‘utopia’ is a transparent cage for the western mind.