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33 Int'l Soc. Work 5 (1900)

handle is hein.journals/intsocwk33 and id is 1 raw text is: 


One  of the amazing aspects of our technologically sophisticated
world is the vividness and speed by which information and events can
be transmitted. Thus in recent weeks we followed in chilling detail the
hourly unfolding of events in Tiananmen Square in Beijing when a
group of students struggled to change a social system through use of
public assembly.
  Partly because of the skill of the journalists involved, partly
because of the determination of the students, partly because of the
availability of media technology and partly because of the excitement
and interest of the world in what appeared to be an opening up of
China the suddenness of the change and the horror and brutality of
the response saddened and troubled us all.
  What  do we as readers and contributors to International Social
Work  do in a situation such as this? How do we respond to articles
written just before these events about the development of a social
welfare network in China? These now  seem to have been written
about another time and another place. Clearly we cannot just turn
our back on a country as vast and complex as China. Surely we must
continue to develop and foster collegial bonds with social workers in
places like China. Yet in attempting to be available and in seeking to
work together we do not wish our efforts to be viewed as support for
the form of oppression that has taken place both there and elsewhere.
  Of course China is not the only area of the world about which we
have concern. The challenge to a journal such as ours is to find how
we can learn from each of these situations. We must try to ensure that
we are as knowledgeable as possible about situations in other parts of
the world. We need to give strong support to our colleagues who are
or have been directly involved in these horrific situations to write
about their perceptions, explanations and understanding, to teach us.
Our ongoing  quest should be to incorporate whatever new under-
standings or perspectives that can be drawn into our own areas of
  The  need for international understanding is one of the primary

International Social Work (SAGE, London, Newbury Park and New Delhi), Vol. 33
(1990), 5-6.

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