For better or worse, the Holocaust has taken on the status of a metonym in American culture, now designating not simply the attempt to exterminate the global Jewry but, at a broader level, the most horrific event in human history. (More…)
We’ve all seen it before. The parade of missiles through Tehran and the lockstep procession of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard. (More…)
Last year I was moderating a panel discussion on prison writing when I heard the phrase “system-impacted people” for the first time. The panellist objected to my use of the term “prisoners” and preferred this substitute. The term’s shift in responsibility is striking. It indicts society for crime rather than acknowledge any element of individual responsibility. (More…)
The burning of Notre Dame was an unequivocal tragedy. Seeing the flames slice the spire from its roof, the blaze appealed to our millennial sense of grief for cultural patrimony. Much more than a religious emblem, the cathedral denotes archetypal Parisian romance. It is a site that has evolved with us as we have remodelled ourselves through history. (More…)
Mr. President, whoever tries to understand the Palestinian refugee problem reaches for the true nature of tragedy. For 20 years. a just resolution of this problem has defied the best efforts of the United Nations as well as the individual efforts of many nations, including the United States. (More…)
It’s hard to believe that Theresa May was once seen as Thatcher 2.0.
The British press would regularly say that May will run the country for the next 10 years. She barely made it to her third year.
On the other hand, it did feel like a decade. (More…)
For better or worse, usually the latter, there is a rule of thumb in US higher education: what happens at Harvard gets noticed. (More…)
There was a time in the long, long ago when the politics of eastern Washington were moderate and relatively civilised. People there tended to be more conservative than they were in Seattle, but that was a pretty low bar. In any case, it was generally the case that politicians from either party could get a reasonable hearing. (More…)
In the fourth grade, I stopped saying the pledge of the allegiance. While the other children clapped their hands to their hearts, I stood, my arms limp, lips still. It was not an act of rebellion, nor did I intend to disrespect the United States. I’d simply decided—after several classmates had tried to convert me to Christianity—that we were not “one nation, under God, indivisible”. As a Jew, I felt that my place was elsewhere. (More…)
“Women are not liberated in spite of themselves,” recalls a collective of anti-racist and de-colonial feminists, claiming their right to “access to private and public employment, education and training, culture and cultural expression and full citizenship, including political citizenship” and urging them to “tackle systems of oppression that intersect to weigh heavily on them”. (More…)
The country soon found itself at the mercy of the revolutionary elements. The prime minister had promised much in the way of social reforms, and that he would cleanse the political life of the country. (More…)
The difficulty of determining Syria’s political boundaries is primarily due to the fact that Syria’s population is not an ethnic unit. Syrians are Arabs, Turks, Kurds, Greeks, Druses, Hebrews, Assyrians, Circassians, and people combining the blood of these various elements. (More…)