Somali Eyes See a Special Zhejiang
Just a second in the classroom and one can instantly hear clear sounds of joy. Hodan Osman Abdi is giving a lecture about African cinema and television. Illustrating the legends of Africa in fluent Chinese, she captures students'attention with great interest.
A Somali citizen, Abdi is a researcher at the Institute of African Studies at Zhejiang Normal University (IASZNU). With 13 years of experience in China, her research focuses on Sino-African relations and African development.
She has visited and lived in many Chinese cities but is particularly attached to the province of Zhejiang. At the very beginning—unaware that between her studies and her following academic career, she would inextricably bond with Zhejiang—she came to Jinhua to be closer to her uncle, who was working in Yiwu.
“In my eyes, Zhejiang is very special,” said Abdi, explaining that she is fond of the local landscape and climate. “Each spring, the willow trees become splendidly green, and a multitude of flowers blossom. All of this make me particularly joyful.”
Since 2016, Abdi has been providing consulting services for the Somali government, which contributes to the spread of “the Chinese experience” in Eastern Africa. At the same time, by introducing African culture to the Chinese, she plays a crucial role in the cultural exchanges between China and Somalia.
In her opinion, there is still a lot to be said and discussed within Sino-African dialogue, so she hopes that through her ability and expertise, mutual friendship and understanding between Chinese and Africans will be further promoted, jointly working for a better future. (By Zheng Mengying—Zhejiang News, translated by Marco Lovisetto, edited by Kendra Fiddler)