Reads
This is not Uganda

This is not Uganda

More than just a graphic novel, This is Not Uganda is like peeking over the shoulder of the artist, the Berlin-based Tine Fetz, and seeing everything she sees. The book, released late last year by German publisher Ja Ja Verlag, is a chronicle of the time that Fetz spent studying and traveling in Israel. More»

The Charlie Ideology

The Charlie Ideology

Faster than you can say “manufacturing consent”, “Je suis Charlie” has become another “Yes we can!”, a slogan for the self-herding masses, an opiate for the iPhone generation. If that wasn’t clear when it became the Facebook meme of the decade, it sure as hell should be obvious now More»

Freedom for Surveillance

Freedom for Surveillance

Debate on the Charlie Hebdo massacre and the various sieges and stand-offs which followed quickly focused on lots of the wrong things but two in particular. More»

Why Context Matters

Why Context Matters

Countless cries of ‘Je Suis Charlie’ (I am Charlie) have emerged in the wake of the violent attack on satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo—one that has left 17 dead. And almost as swiftly, and now almost as furiously, comes the backlash. This backlash, and its proponents, are careful to condemn the attack, but nonetheless declares, ‘I am not Charlie’ as it tries to call attention to the racism inherent in many of the publication’s political cartoons. More»

My Transgender Experience

My Transgender Experience

I’ve spent the last week avoiding Leelah Alcorn’s viral suicide note. The story has dominated social media, and the news, with a heartbreaking tale of a teenager who committed suicide, out of desperation after being unable to transition.  More»

Reeling in the Year

Reeling in the Year

A few weeks ago, Facebook users began posting the Year in Review posts automatically generated by the social media company’s mysterious algorithms. While these strange collages came with a customization option, most people seemed content to post theirs as-is. As I waited for my turn, I wondered whether I could do the same. 2014 was a rough year for me and my family. More»

Post-Capitalist Politics

Post-Capitalist Politics

At a fundamental level, there is something very attractive about the writings of Murray Bookchin. The work of this often prickly autodidact, who died in 2006, evinces an enduring to commitment to something that might (in the best sense of the word) be termed “humanism.” More»

Never Mind the Women

Never Mind the Women

Between 1976 and 1979, the British punk scene produced some very good albums (Never Mind the Bollocks; London Calling; Damned, Damned, Damned) and a couple of real brilliancies (The Pop Group’s Y, Gang of Four’s Entertainment.) But for sheer transgression, there is nothing to top Cut, the first album by The Slits. More»

A Journalistic Failure

A Journalistic Failure

Rolling Stone may very well lose some of the honor it’s earned over the decades. From Annie Leibovitz’s photography to Hunter S. Thompson’s gonzo journalism to Michael Hastings’s story that brought down a top US general in Afghanistan, the publication has commanded a presence not just in the world of magazines, but in Americana at large. More»

Culture of Secrecy

Culture of Secrecy

There is a section in David Kilcullen’s excellent counter-insurgency book The Accidental Guerrilla where the author describes a rising insurgency in terms of an antibody model. The antibodies being those resisting the occupation, theorised as a foreign object. More»

The French Holocaust

The French Holocaust

“No European country has been more interested than France in the nature of memory and history, how it is understood, recorded, perceived, written and transmitted.” So writes Caroline Morehead in her new book, Village of Secrets: Defying the Nazis in Vichy France, and with some justice. More»

Dead Weather

Dead Weather

Few issues strike so close to home as human-driven climate change. Although one form or another of this explanation has been acknowledged by the vast majority of scientists, the general public has proved less ready to accept that this is the case. A recent Pew study revealed that 67% of Americans thought that there was “solid evidence that the Earth is warming,” with only 44% conceding that human beings are causing it. More»