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Subjects Archives: Culture

Cuba and Venezuela: A Bolivarian Partnership

  José Martí and Simón Bolívar, two of Latin America’s most respected independence fighters, recognized nearly a century ago that their homelands would never be free of imperial domination, until Latin America came together in solidarity as a united force. Martí and Bolívar’s insights remain relevant in the age of neo-liberal globalization.  The colonizers of […]

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How I Spent My Summer Vacations

  [This essay is a winner of an essay contest held by Left Hook and sponsored by Monthly Review. — Ed.] During the last two summers, I did not spend my days relaxing on a beach reading great novels and poems.  I did not write the grand story I promised myself I would write.  Instead, […]

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Culture and the Cashbox

“Money doesn’t talk, it swears.” — Bob Dylan The beginning of this year’s holiday season and the Major League Baseball offseason (when most of the trading and dealing of players occurs) has led me to ponder, once again, money and American popular culture.  The re-release of Bruce Springsteen‘s 1975 tour de force Born to Run […]

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A Hike in Sedona

  Sedona is a small town about twenty-five miles south of Flagstaff in north central Arizona. USA Weekend recently voted it the “most beautiful place in America.” Sedona’s setting is stunning. To get there from Flagstaff, you drive down Oak Creek Canyon on a steep and heavily switch-backed road. As the canyon deepens, you are […]

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Religion: Who Needs It?*

  Epistemological Remarks Questions about religion can be put into two categories.  In the first are those about the truth of the prominent assertions peculiar to many faiths, such as that one or more gods (as described by the believers) exist, that such beings hear myriad prayers, that they perform various miracles, and that some […]

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Korogocho, Nairobi

  [Nikolaj Nielsen spent two months in Africa this year. He stayed in the slums of Nairobi for two weeks, interviewing men and women about their thoughts on poverty. He was accompanied by a local NGO, about which he has reservations. — Ed.] The main road in the Korogocho slum in northern Nairobi is littered […]

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New Orleans:

  The world watched as people of New Orleans were herded into the Superdome, only to find themselves in a wretched and unsanitary place with no food, water, or proper medical care. Those in areas of high flooding fled to their rooftops, begging rescue helicopters to airlift them to safety. Many died trapped in their […]

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Starbucks: Selling Out the Counter-Culture?

“Hip capital” . . . “Rebel consumers” . . . “Conquest of cool” . . . “Bobos [bourgeois bohemians] in paradise!” Such are the terms used by social critics to ironically sum up the marketing of the counter-culture, a phenomenon that is commonly exemplified by the reduction of one-time “anti-establishment” anthems to a seemingly endless […]

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