Bopping in the Balkans

WELL, IN SLOVENIA, ANYWAY by Lawrence Bush THERE’S SOME KIND of car-horn concert going on in the streets of central Ljubljana this morning, so I just climbed back down and up 10 flights of stairs to our apartment to find out out what it is. Firemen on strike, blasting air-horns — a very musical-sounding strike. The young man […]

Read More

The Uncivil Servant: The Fantasy of “Fantasyland”

IS AMERICA EXCEPTIONALLY ECCENTRIC? by Mitchell Abidor Discussed in this essay: Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire, by Kurt Andersen. Random House, 2017, 462 pages.   THE FANTASYLAND that is the subject of Kurt Andersen’s Fantasyland is, of course, America. And not just today’s alternative-fact America and its truth-challenged president, but America since its foundation. As Andersen writes: […]

Read More

How to Watch a Confederate Statue Fall

by Joel Schechter 1) CONSIDER IT ART CRITICISM While I applaud the decision of local governments and activists to remove statues of Confederate soldiers and leaders from public spaces,  insofar as the statues represent defenders of slavery, I also want to note the curious spectacle of an American President verbally defending these statues against their critics […]

Read More

Highways of Racism, from Charlottesville, VA to Hartford, CT

by Richard Greeman   A WELL-RESEARCHED article by John Eligan in the August 18 New York Times goes beyond denouncing the symbolic racism of Charlottesville’s Confederate statues to expose the more pernicious structural racism embedded in the separate-but-unequal physical segregation of the city. Ironically, this segregation was imposed, not during the rise of the KKK in the 1920s, but […]

Read More

Levinsky Park — on African Refugees in Tel Aviv

AN INTERVIEW WITH DIRECTOR BETH TONI KRUVANT AND EDITOR CINDY KAPLAN ROONEY ABOUT THE FILM, LEVINSKY PARK (2016) by Esther Cohen SOUTH TEL AVIV is home to one of Israel’s underserved populations, Sephardic Jews, some barely earning a living. In the midst of this neighborhood, home since 2005 also to more than 60,000 African refugees from Sudan, Eritrea, […]

Read More

Building the Myth: Capitalism = Democracy

by George Salamon “[T]he liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than the Democratic State itself.” —Franklin D. Roosevelt, address to Congress, 1938 WE REACHED that point years ago. A 2014 study by two political scientists concluded: “[O]ur analyses […]

Read More

Gender and the Next Presidential Campaign

LESSONS FROM HILLARY’S DEFEAT by Myriam Miedzian THE 2008 PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY campaign saw overwhelming excitement about the prospect of Obama as first African- American president, and minimal excitement about the prospect of Clinton as first woman president. Why wasn’t the recognition of the momentousness of a first woman president in our 240-year history remotely comparable to that of […]

Read More

Igal Roodenko and the Freedom Rides

Igal Roodenko (1917-1991), a pacifist and a gay Jewish activist (center in photo above, with suitcase), was among sixteen men, eight black and eight white, who began a “Journey of Reconciliation” on interstate buses through the segregated South on this date in 1947. As members of the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE), they planned to […]

Read More