Economic shifts and troubles can create strife among communities throughout the world, and the same can be seen in Ruined. Mobile phones, popularized and later necessitated in the Western World require the mineral coltan to function properly. At the beginning of Ruined, it is mentioned that the small town in which Mama Nadi’s bar is located has been found to be a hotspot for the mineral. This introduction of a valuable natural resource draws people to the town and destabilizes the economy due to the inflow of wealth. Wealth in such quantities and this destabilization leads to a breakdown of the community and a change to the individual to focus more on wealth and a game of who can understand and use the coltan to maximize profits. This is shown when Mama Nadi takes a whole chunk of coltan from a soldier as payment for one of her girls. While the soldier sees this as just pa...
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...his story show the harsh conditions the men are exposed to in war, but also it further demonstrates the hold coltan has on the minds of those who live in the Congo. The want for coltan leads to the destruction of the community and individual identities of those involved as it perpetuates a cycle of war that damages men, induces violence against women, and ultimately creates a cycle of lost identity.
In the end, Ruined illuminates a war that ravages the people of the Congo and strips them of the community they had once called home and of the people who they used to be. The need for cell phones and the mineral coltan in the Western world lead to a great deal of war and strife in the Congo. Ruined acts as a medium where we can view those consequences and understand just how big of an impact globalism can have on other areas of the world and the people who live there.
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