Frank Herbert, author of the sci-fi classic ”Dune,” said: “The beginning of knowledge is the discovery of something we do not understand.” The moment we each stepped off the plane here in Prague, we entered the realm of misunderstanding.
After all, who are we, American college kids, to assume that in a few short months we could dare to ponder, much less write about, a world in which we do not speak the language, have not studied the history and do not have a native’s head-nodding comprehension of the culture?
We are at the beginning of knowledge.
We are learning, and striving every day to learn faster, the ways of the country we live in. Before arriving, we naively read up on Kafka, Milan Kundera, and Communism galore, and then realized that absolutely no one here really wants to talk about any of that.
In the scant time we’ve been here, we’ve learned enough to know that for every one thing we learn about the Czech Republic by the time we return to the U.S., there may be seven we never quite pick up on.
As journalists, this can be hard to come to terms with. After all, journalism at its simplest is dedicated to delivering the best facts possible on any given topic in order to keep the reader informed.
The best we at the Prague Wanderer can promise is that we will try. We will do our best to inform you and entertain you while causing as little offense with our gaffes (and there will be gaffes).
At our Webzine, we know well that the internet may be the best and worst thing to ever happen to journalism.
The best, of course, because of how it has opened up public discourse to the entire world. Local news articles from Melbourne can be instantly accessed from Boca Raton. Photos from Oslo are sent to Buenos Aires in the blink of an eye.
The dark side of Internet journalism is how any writer is immediately subject to an entire planet’s worth of criticism. The thought of millions of potential readers out there to read and critique your article, though encouraging, can be daunting when we are already in a strange environment.
So, all we ask is that you have a little patience with us. We hope you will read our work, pointing out whenever we may be wrong, but above all enjoying what we have to offer as we wander our way through this semester and through Prague.