Posted in English

Professional profile summaries

Maria

I am an architect with 20 years’ experience of designing and developing spaces. I am a partner in the award-winning STG Architects Ltd, which is famous for its work on the Galroy Building in London. I enjoy working with people from all over the world and have international experience of working in Italy, Greece, Thailand, Australia and Brazil. I have a Master of Science from Sheffield University and a BA in Architecture from Hull University. I also speak Italian and Thai. When I am not working, I spend my time hiking, skiing and diving.

Emily

I am an experienced sales manager with 12 years’ experience of developing customer service teams. I am skilled in negotiation, team motivation and building successful sales teams. After ten years of working in sales and customer service at Halo Bank, I am now the sales office manager of a team of 120 at Southern General Plastics Ltd. I have an MBA from Stanford University and a degree in Business Studies from Cornell University. I am creative and hardworking, and enjoy working with others.

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Posted in English

A message to a new friend

Hi Lucia

How are you? It was so nice to meet you last week in Sydney at the sales meeting. How was the rest of your trip? Did you see any kangaroos? I hope you got home to Mexico City OK.

Anyway, I have the documents about the new Berlin offices. We’re going to be open in three months. I moved here from London just last week. They are very nice offices, and the location is perfect. There are lots of restaurants, cafés and banks in the area. There’s also public transport; we are next to an U-Bahn (that is the name for the metro here). Maybe you can come and see them one day? I would love to show you Berlin, especially in the winter. You said you have never seen snow – you will see lots here!

Here’s a photo of you and me at the restaurant in Sydney. That was a very fun night! Remember the singing Englishman? Crazy! Please send me any other photos you have of that night. Good memories.

Please give me your email address and I will send you the documents.

Bye for now

Mikel

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Posted in English

Star Wars and the hero myth

Critics of the 2015 film Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens have called the film unoriginal and predictable because the story so closely mirrors the very first Star Wars film in 1977. But, in fact, both films follow a structure that pre-dates all Hollywood films, that of the ‘hero myth’. That’s because director George Lucas based Star Wars on the ideas in Joseph Campbell’s 1949 book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces. Later editions of Campbell’s book even featured Star Wars’ hero Luke Skywalker on the front cover.

In his book, Campbell analyses myths from all over the world to describe the ‘monomyth’ – a pattern that you can see in myths from every culture. In short, a hero sets off from home on a journey, where he overcomes obstacles and defeats enemies to return with a prize. It’s a tale that has been told for thousands of years, from the Ancient Greeks with The Odyssey to JK Rowling’s Harry Potter books.

George Lucas was one of the early film directors to directly base his story on the 17 stages of the hero’s journey. Typically the hero starts the story living an ordinary life, but something happens that calls them to an adventure that changes everything. At the beginning of Star Wars, Luke lives an ordinary life with his aunt and uncle, repairing robots. When he finds Princess Leia’s message to Obi-Wan Kenobi inside the robot R2D2, it is ‘the call to adventure’ that starts the hero on his journey.

According to Campbell, the hero at first refuses the call to adventure, but a mentor appears who helps them and they decide to ‘cross the threshold’ and travel into the ‘special world’ where the adventure happens. The next stage consists of passing tests, fighting enemies and meeting friends as the hero prepares to face their biggest challenge. For Luke the mentor is, of course, Obi-Wan, the friends are Han Solo and the robots R2D2 and C3PO and the enemy is Darth Vader inside the special world of the Death Star.

Next, the hero overcomes obstacles on the way to facing their greatest challenge. There often comes a moment when they face death or loss and that experience gives them the strength to finally defeat the enemy. Luke loses his mentor when he sees Darth Vader kill Obi-Wan, which helps him find the strength he needs later on. When heroes succeed, they return from the special world, changed by their experiences forever. Luke’s change comes when he remembers Obi-Wan saying, ‘Use the force’, and he uses it to help him aim his laser into the heart of the Death Star. Luke takes his first steps to becoming a Jedi, and the hero myth restarts in The Return of the Jedi, except this time his mentor is Yoda.

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