Pride and Concrete

by Petrut Calinescu-Ioana Hodoiu 

One in six Romanians has gone abroad to work. Most of them come from rural areas and the money sent back home has irreversibly transformed their native villages. Unlike in the city, where even competition is experienced and perceived individually and behind closed doors, changes are highly more visible in villages, where the main street is open stage to social competition. Despite the fact that they have been supporting Romania’s economy for the last 20 years, the people back home use a pejorative term for those who have left: strawberry pickers.