Berfrois

Gerardo Muñoz: Latinamericanism

Gerardo Muñoz: Latinamericanism

In spite of its simplicity and methodical pragmatism, Charles Hatfield’s Limits of identity: Politics and Poetics in Latin America is an ambitious and systematic effort to dismantle some of the predominant variations of identarianism

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‘FEMEN’s images and actions became increasingly daring and innovative’

‘FEMEN’s images and actions became increasingly daring and innovative’

Any emergent social movement will faces obstacles, will proceed unevenly and with difficulty as it undermines people's resistance toward cultural change. In Ukraine, the decades ahead will present ever greater challenges to the formation of a consensus on women's rights, even as people's awareness of the patterns of anti-woman...

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Francisco de Miranda actually lived in the foothills of the Acropolis…

Francisco de Miranda actually lived in the foothills of the Acropolis…

Cartagena, Colombia. Photograph by Fernando Zuleta by Gregory Jusdanis Literature seems to be everywhere in Cartagena and not just because Gabriel García Márquez still has a house there. I was prepared to find a literary city as I had recently read Ilan Stavans’ biography of García Márquez. But as...

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Orgasmatronic

Orgasmatronic

Grass Mud Horse, Ai Weiwei From The Chronicle Review: Katrien Jacobs, a conference speaker from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, studies what she calls porn activism. In People’s Pornography: Sex and Surveillance on the Chinese Internet (Intellect, 2012), she discusses the recent flourishing of that culture’s pent-up desire...

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‘Antiquity-continuity; diversity-unity; massivity-democracy; multiconfessionality-secularity’

‘Antiquity-continuity; diversity-unity; massivity-democracy; multiconfessionality-secularity’

Delhi, August 1947 From London Review of Books: ‘Astonishing thought: that any culture or civilisation should have this continuity for five or six thousand years or more; and not in a static or unchanging sense, for India was changing and progressing all the time,’ marvelled the country’s future ruler...

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Dream and Talent

Dream and Talent

Sandro Girgvliani by Irakli Zurab Kakabadze It is already 20 years since the breakup of the Soviet Union. We were the generation who was filled with hope in 1989, who expected great transformation of the world after the demise of the totalitarian state. We expected so much. This generation...

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John Gaffney: A Royal Incident

John Gaffney: A Royal Incident

France's ‘Valériegate’ seems trivial, yet will possibly turn out to be one of the most important and problematic events of François Hollande’s presidency, in terms of the way both his presidency and his image are perceived from now on.

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Such Leniency

Such Leniency

One of the hostage takers during the Munich Massacre, at the 1972 Summer Olympics, Munich. Photograph by Russell McPhedran From Der Spiegel: The men who were arrested in the Munich house of former Waffen-SS member Charles Jochheim late on Oct. 27, 1972 were armed like soldiers on their way...

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Andrea Teti: Egypt Decided

Andrea Teti: Egypt Decided

After one of the most nail-biting weeks since the Egyptian uprising of January 2011, the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party, Mohammed Morsy, was recognised as Egypt’s new President, the first in the country’s history to be voted in through genuinely competitive elections. This is doubtlessly a momentous...

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‘A new breed of digital nightingales chirped all night’

‘A new breed of digital nightingales chirped all night’

"FRANCE HAS A NEW PRESIDENT." It does not look like much of a statement on paper, or on a computer screen: five little words, almost too short for a tweet. But France today is still dazed from the news, floating between disbelief, relief and exhaustion.

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Can Ellen Johnson Sirleaf win the trust of Liberia?

Can Ellen Johnson Sirleaf win the trust of Liberia?

From Guernica: In Liberia, loyalty matters. When Weah ran for president in 2005, he said he’d try to seek justice for Doe’s murder. Weah campaigned heavily in the southeast, including Grand Gedeh. At a rally in Doe’s home village of Tuzon, Doe’s sister Edith grabbed the microphone. “We’ll never...

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Isaac Fitzgerald: In Love in San Francisco

Isaac Fitzgerald: In Love in San Francisco

by Isaac Fitzgerald I came to this city in love and with everything I owned stuffed into three bags — it was San Francisco, so six people in a three-bedroom apartment seemed like something that could work. But when a week turned into a month she said maybe I...

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Afghanistan’s Ever Changing Warfare by Rob Johnson

Afghanistan’s Ever Changing Warfare by Rob Johnson

Afghanistan is a land of paradox. The investment that has been poured into the country by the West in the last decade will be the largest in Afghanistan’s history, and yet a portion of its people are engaged in a protracted insurgency that squanders this golden opportunity.

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‘A flying carpet is lying in wait in Berlin’

‘A flying carpet is lying in wait in Berlin’

From the Roads to Arabia exhibition, Pergamon Museum, Berlin From Sign and Sight: Archaeological exhibitions at Berlin’s Pergamon Museum have had an unprecedentedly successful year. “Tell Halaf” attracted 750,000 visitors, “Pergamon” sold 250,000 tickets in just two months and “Roads of Arabia” opened on January 26th. The more confusing...

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John Gaffney: Sarkalimero

John Gaffney: Sarkalimero

There’s a cartoon character that all French children watched in the '70s and ‘80s, Calimero. He was a little black chick who, ever provoking trouble, always ended up defeated and complaining, “it’s really so unfair!” when in reality, he was usually the architect of his own misfortunes. At times,...

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Quebecers United Against the ‘Business World’

Quebecers United Against the ‘Business World’

Student protest in Quebec, March 22, 2012. Photograph by Tina Mailhot-Roberge by Justin E. H. Smith On April 23, writing in the Chronicle of Higher Education, Lilian Radovac aptly described the past few months of upheaval across Quebec as “the biggest student uprising you’ve never heard of.” This movement,...

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What should Europe’s intellectuals be doing?

What should Europe’s intellectuals be doing?

Towards the end of last year, as the Eurozone crisis was reaching (yet another) climax, a number of journalists in the German quality press alerted their readers to an aspect of the crisis which had received scant attention so far: the euro crisis marked not only the failure of...

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Child Circulation in Quintana Roo

Child Circulation in Quintana Roo

During my thesis research in the communities of Saban and Huay Max, located in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico, I watched how children from three different familial units living on the same housing lot were constantly reorganized and re-circulated as adult family members came and went.

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Musings on the Mediterranean “Monsters”

Musings on the Mediterranean “Monsters”

Persepolis, Briton Rivière by Gregory Jusdanis Many travelers still seek solitude among the tourists, the luxury to communicate personally with the ruins. They long to leave their minds on idle, while they enter the vista before them, undisturbed by the other souls striving for the same illusion. I often...

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Ring Road

Ring Road

Lahore ring road. Photograph from Google Earth. by Manan Ahmed You can’t see through cement – and neither can I. When I look at Lahore and the ways in which cement has cordoned off sight-lines, I see a city full of people blind-folded. The gated communities were the first...

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