On culture and power

Interview with Ahdaf Soueif We seem to be entering through a period of contradictions, of dislocating change and crisis, of raised hopes and terrible realities. We have seen the economic crisis questioning the very pillars of neoliberalism yet market fundamentalism has not faltered in its march. We have had inspiring flourishing of social movements yet [...]

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US Cultural Colonisation in Asia Pacific

Ancient Roman historian Tacitus (c. AD 56 – after 117) would adeptly describe the systematic manner in which Rome pacified foreign peoples and the manner in which it would extend its sociocultural and institutional influence over conquered lands. In chapter 21 of his book Agricola, named so after his father-in-law whose methods of conquest were [...]

Amazon, the company that killed the bookstore, opens one

Amazon.com, the monolithic corporation that killed the brick-and-mortar bookstore, now owns one. Amazon Books opened Tuesday in Seattle. The store is stocked with 5,000 to 6,000 titles and looks remarkably like a regular bookstore. You know — from the ’90s, before Amazon killed them all. Unlike a normal bookstore, however, Amazon Books has the advantage [...]

Cultural Genocide

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Canada has concluded that country’s decades-long policy of forcibly removing indigenous children from their families and placing them in state-funded residential Christian schools amounted to, quote, "cultural genocide." After a six-year investigation, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report concluded: quote, "The Canadian government pursued this policy of cultural genocide [...]

Protecting the Sanctity of Indigenous Foods and Cultures

Indigenous peoples inhabit more than 85 percent of the Earth’s protected areas, yet only 1 percent of the billions of dollars spent each year on philanthropy goes to indigenous peoples and the ecosystem services they support. Indigenous communities have inherited millennium-tested traditional ecological knowledge, land-based lifeways, and a holistic, interdependent relationship to the Earth. In [...]

Augusto Boal, the legendary Brazilian political playwright

Augusto Boal, the legendary Brazilian political playwright and popular educator, died this weekend at the age of seventy-eight. He was the founder of the Theater of the Oppressed, a popular international movement for a participatory form of theater as a means of promoting knowledge and democratic forms of interaction. Boal conducted workshops all over the [...]