An Array of Utopian Flowers
- Big Noise from Big Band Drummer Gene Krupa
Posted on April 10, 2018 | No Comments
- Loose Nuts: Edison Reveals Huge Gap in Safety at San Onofre
Posted on April 9, 2018 | No Comments
- The US Shame of My Lai in Vietnam
Posted on March 17, 2018 | No Comments
- The Lucrative and Violent Curse of Coltan Mining in Congo
Posted on March 3, 2018 | No Comments
- Iannis Xenakis and the Notion of a Cosmic Utopia
Posted on February 21, 2018 | No Comments
- Big Noise from Big Band Drummer Gene Krupa
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Twittering From the Trees
- Posted on March 3, 2018 | No CommentsOne of Africa's most rare-minerals-rich countries, the Democratic Republic of Congo, has endured Belgian colonization, slavery, and continuing atrocities, where militant groups control the extraction of "conflict resources." The tech industry turns these extracted raw materials into components of mobile phones and computers. Yet the cost is deadly.
- Posted on September 3, 2016 | 1 CommentFela Kuti, Nigerian music legend, political insurrectionist and provocateur against the corporate and missionary sell-out of African wisdom and religion, ending up in jail and tortured...and loved by the African people. Here, Jamaican-born, Africa-based writer Lindsay Barrett puts us on Fela's life path, his wild and unstructured Afrobeat sound, the commune, the wives, and the push against the Nigerian military dictatorship.
- Posted on November 27, 2013 | No CommentsThe Loliondo Game Controlled Area (LGCA), one of Tanzania’s most well-known Maasai community concessions and wildlife destinations, is in the spotlight as local stakeholders and outside financial interests clash over its natural resources. Watch "Welcome to Loliondo," a documentary on how the Maasai confront the threat of safari tourism taking away their land.
- Posted on August 7, 2013 | 1 CommentInternational environmental and human rights campaigners condemn the 4th Latin American Palm Oil Conference to be held by the Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) in Honduras on 6th-8th August. The site of deadly conflicts over land rights with alarming impacts to ecosystems and communities, sustainably produced palm oil in this Central American country is impossible. The World Wildlife Fund among other sponsors, are charged with greenwashing and condoning human rights abuses.
- Posted on July 31, 2013 | 3 CommentsAnansi, the trickster from the folktales of the Ashanti of West Africa, takes the shape of a spider who goes to the sky god to buy his stories to share with the world. Anansi's stories would become popular through the African diaspora all over the Caribbean and southern US. Here is an animated retelling called "A Story, A Story."
- Posted on May 11, 2013 | 2 CommentsHistorically, farmers have stored, traded and shared choice seed from one season to the next. According to Dr. Vandana Shiva, this practice ended with the introduction of patented genetically engineered seeds. Saving seeds now exposes the farmer to costly fines and lawsuits for patent infringement and has resulted in many farmer suicides.
- Posted on May 7, 2013 | 1 CommentMaster planned, self contained New Cities have appeared all over Africa. Emulating models from the global north, private-sector boosters advance them without considering factors such as environment, economy, context and even poverty. Nairobi-based urban practitioner Jane Lumumba argues they might only make social and economic problems worse.
- Posted on April 30, 2013 | No CommentsLike several West African religions, Vodouisants believe in a supreme being called Bondyè, from bon "good" + dyè "God." Because Bondyè is unreachable, Vodouisants aim their prayers to lesser entities, the spirits known as Lwa (Loa), contacted and served through possession. In turn, the Lwa confer material blessings, physical well-being, protection, abundance.
- Posted on April 12, 2013 | No CommentsA community of coffee farmers in Uganda has formed the Peace Kawomera Fair Trade Cooperative, focused on people of different faiths putting aside their differences to overcome generations of conflict and poverty. Now a Smithsonian Folkways recording has been released to celebrate their achievements.
- Posted on March 19, 2013 | 4 Comments“Severe grazing is absolutely essential to maintain biodiversity,” argues Allan Savory in a recent TED Talk. Of course, this is the opposite of scientific truth for the sensitive desert ecosystem. Advocating "holistic grazing," Mr. Savory pieces together false assumptions to produce ineffective but popular recommendations on climate change.
- Posted on January 26, 2013 | 2 CommentsGillo Pontecorvo's 1966 masterpiece, "The Battle of Algiers," as a study of the brutality of urban guerrilla warfare, serves an Arab-street-level counterpoint to Kathryn Bigelow's US-imperialism-centered, torture-driven war propaganda film, "Zero Dark Thirty."
- Posted on January 12, 2013 | 1 CommentIkland recounts a quest to re-connect with the Ik people. For producer Cevin Soling, they represented the last outpost of imagination in a world devoid of myth. Soling and his crew risked their lives by traveling through war-ravaged northern Uganda to reach them. Their experience was alien and surreal in ways only Jonathan Swift might have imagined...
- Posted on September 22, 2011 | 3 CommentsChocolate often originates from the hands of children working as slaves. In Côte D’Ivoire and other cocoa-producing countries, an estimated 100,000 children labor in the fields, many against their will. Action taken now demands that Hershey "Raise the Bar" on their fair trade labor practices.