On attention and activism

I came across a recent interview of Rachel Maddow over at Lenny and her comment about what makes for successful activism caught my attention — RM: Yes. I did my doctoral dissertation on social movements around prison reform, AIDS, and health reform. One of the things that I wrote about is that there are some political […]

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On interview techniques

After being found guilty and sentenced to 40 years by the ICTY today, David A. Graham over at The Atlantic’s Notes highlights a 1993 interview conducted with Radovan Karadzic — In January 1993, still relatively early in the Bosnian war, [CBC’s] As It Happens scored an interview with Karadzic. In a retrospective segment years ago, former host Michael Enright […]

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On conferences: the discursive construction of ‘strangers’ @ Uni Birmingham

Ruth Wodak’s lecture on the discursive construction of ‘strangers’ during a conference held by the University of Birmingham on 5.11.15: Inclusion and exclusion of migrants and refugees are renegotiated in the European Union on almost a daily scale: ever new policies defining and restricting immigration are proposed by European member states. A return to more […]

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On what the news covers

Max Fisher over at Vox addresses the swirling accusations that the media (at large) ignores certain conflicts for others — It would be easy to blame the media for this, to say that if only media outlets covered Beirut rather than ignoring it, the world might pay attention. I have bad news: The media does […]

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On blindness

The NYT just posted a wide-ranging conversation between George Yancy and Seyla Benhabib in their The Stone blog — George Yancy.: We far too often fail to understand each other across racial divides. A “post-racial” discourse might even occlude the effort to do so. How do we create spaces for understanding the conditions of others, especially within […]

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On interviews

I think I safely fall into the camp that would happily have a conversation with Terry Gross. I’d be lying if — like the Ira Glass note below — I didn’t admit to listening to her interviews to study the nuance of the art. From Susan Burton’s profile of Terry Gross in the New York Times […]

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On a crisis of values

From Volker Türk’s remarks at the 133rd Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union General Debate — Yet the single-most important challenge to the protection of refugees, as well as to reaping the development potential of migration more broadly comes from populist politics and uninformed public debates. They engender a climate of fear. In some countries there […]

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On “Where are you from?”

Tanvi Misra over at The Atlantic’s CityLab Navigator blog looks into the potentially loaded question, “Where are you from?” — Trump’s inquiry was a ruder variant of “where are you from?”—a seemingly innocuous question that we all have encountered under different circumstances. It’s okay in situations where everyone is venturing answers: say, as a part […]

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On art, freedom of expression, and embassies in the Netherlands

Letty Reimerink over at CityLab reports on Manon van Hoeckel’s “In Limbo Embassy” — No visas, asylum requests or official papers get processed at the trailer, known as the “In Limbo Embassy.” There is, however, a certain kind of diplomacy as migrant “ambassadors” shake hands with people passing by and invite them inside for conversation. Manon van […]

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