Hummus and and falafel have long been staples in US supermarkets. The more expensive and alternative the vendor, the bigger the Middle Eastern food offerings. Aimed at vegetarians and international clientele (Arabs and Israelis, especially in larger cities) offerings have improved in recent years, despite the persistence of problems that tend to plague Levantine-American cuisine, such as an absence of tahina. (More…)
“Sans papiers.” For European advocates of multiculturalism and social justice, few terms have as much political significance as this piece of graffiti testifies, in Brussels’ Matongé neighborhood. French for “without papers,” the designation was originally coined in reference to illegal immigrants to France, who number up to 400,000, according to The Guardian. (More…)
Europe didn’t need Anders Breivik to know that xenophobia has grown to epidemic proportions. Sample graffiti in any metro area, and you’ll find more hate speech than anything else. Despite its leftist politics, Turin, for example plays host to amongst the most racist tagging in Italy. Note the use of a Swastika, in the place of an S, in the word “Islam.” (More…)
If this were a music mag, it would have made for a great advert. “Rage against the machine,” read the headline gracing the cover of the October 22nd edition of The Economist. The subheadline, however, was a bit more in keeping: “Capitalism and its critics.” Reinforcing the message was a photo of a concerned young man next to a US flag, a dollar bill taped across his mouth. (More…)
Berlin head hunters display their kills. Cafe window installation, Neukölln. August, 2011.
One of the world’s greatest media museums sits just across the river from my apartment. Its name is the Museo Nazionale del Cinema (National Museum of Cinema.) Located inside Torino’s Mole Antonelliana, a 19th century building originally designed to be a synagogue, the place still has something of a holy purpose. Especially for an LA native, like me. (More…)
During the four and a half years that I lived in London, I always found that I did my best reading on the tube. Not necessarily of my own books or periodicals (though I always had one or the other on me) but the newspapers I found other passengers reading. As an immigrant youngster, at first I imagined that the headlines I encountered represented the opinions of the British. As I grew older, and began returning to the country as a journalist, I of course learned otherwise. (More…)
The Green Wave, a new documentary directed by Ali Samadi Ahadi, tells the wired and informed what they already knew. It recounts the groundswell of support for Iranian presidential candidate and one-time Prime Minister Mir-Hossein Mousavi, whose chosen campaign colour of green gives the film, not to mention the historical event (The Green Revolution) its name. (More…)
You have to savor the cross, and its proximity to ‘bacteria’. Euronews carries the most memorable adverts on British cable television. April, 2011.
The morning I returned from the US, every paper was carrying the same cover story: Six Italian soldiers had been killed by a suicide bomber in Kabul. Corriere Della Serra, La Repubblica, even the local edition of The Metro, all seemed to be working with the same set of photos of the event’s aftermath. For the first time since we’d moved to Milano, it was like overhearing an entire country sighing, simultaneously. From left to right, the reaction was the same. Everyone was in a state of shock. (More…)