Sophiatown, in the suburbs of Johannesburg, was once known for its bohemian lifestyle and vibrant music scene. But 60 years ago, the South African government decided to clear the multi-racial neighbourhood to turn it into a whites-only area.
Less than two weeks after the Charlie Hebdo attacks — and the subsequent demands that followed for Muslims to denounce violence — it's got to be a tough time to produce a light-hearted podcast called "Good Muslim/Bad Muslim." But that's not what hosts Taz Ahmed and Zahra Noorbakhsh think.
“If you really want to know a people, start by looking inside their bedrooms," says Shereen El Feki, who traveled through the Middle East for five years, talking to people about sex. While those conversations reflected rigid norms and deep repression, El Feki also discovered that sexual conservatism in the Arab world is a relatively new thing. She wonders: could a re-emergence of public dialogue lead to more satisfying, and safer, sex lives?
Deciding the fate of the Roma population in Europe EU immigration ministers meet in Paris on Monday. Ministers from the European countries where the 'problem' originates were not invited, but can they be ignored? After the French crackdown on the Roma, is the EU facing deep divisions? Is it even legal for EU countries to expel other EU citizens?
On the same day that the news emerged of a Pakistani Christian couple burnt to death in a kiln by enraged Muslim villagers for apparently unwittingly burning the verses of the Koran, Prince Charles was addressing a gathering at the House of Lords on religious freedom. The future King, who once said that he wished to be Defender of Faith, rather than Defender of the Faith on ascending the throne, made an eloquent plea for religious tolerance at home and across the world.
One day last spring, near an old rural cemetery in southern Brazil, a black man named Marcelo Gomes held up the corners of a Confederate flag to pose for a cell-phone photo. After the picture was taken, Gomes said he saw no problem with a black man paying homage to the history of the Confederate States of America. "American culture is a beautiful culture," he said. Some of his friends had Confederate blood.
Gomes had joined some 2,000 Brazilians at the annual festa of the Fraternidade Descendência Americana, the brotherhood of Confederate descendants in Brazil, on a plot near the town of Americana, which was settled by Southern defectors 150 years ago.
NEW YORK (RNS) No one is suggesting that Christians are just like the Islamic State. But Obama did suggest that Christianity is like Islam; both faiths have the capacity to be exploited by extremists.
Seth Dixon's insight:
This is a faux-controversy in my mind; of course Christianity as a religion with over a billion followers and thousands of years of history has skeletons in its closet. Comparing modern-day atrocities of ISIS to horrors of Christian past is fair according to this article in the Religious News Service as well as this one in New Republic.
In the United States, we speak easily of different ethnic and religious communities. But the reality is far different in France, where the Charlie Hebdo attacks have brought religion and its place in French society back to the top of the agenda.
Seth Dixon's insight:
If the US embraces freedom *of* religion, France embraces freedom *from* religion.
The whole hip-hop community has finally taken Azalea to task for building her career by stealing black musical sounds and styles and using her whiteness to sell them to the masses. In the process, she has done little to actually give back to the hip-hop community except be flagrantly offensive. And black hip-hop artists aren't standing for it any longer.
Ferguson, Mo., has captured the nation's attention for the better part of the past four months. But in just a few short days in the national news, Eric Garner has become the political rallying point that Ferguson never has.
A new poll shows considerably more unhappiness with the lack of an indictment in Garner's case than in the one in Ferguson. And, perhaps most important as far as its impact goes, that unhappiness is significantly less connected to a person's race.
Most people around the world are pretty bad when it comes to knowing the numbers behind the news. But how issues such as immigration are perceived can shape political opinion and promote misconceptions
"The nine-note tune made famous in Carl Douglas' 1974 song has served as a stereotype of Asian music since the 19th century.
"[The opening phrase from the song 'Chinatown, My Chinatown'] resembles an extremely well known trope of musical orientalism—one of the most efficient that the West has developed to signal 'Asia.' "
"We get the sense of another culture when we hear the scale, It's worth thinking about the fact that the scale isn't necessarily something we would've been listening to in the United States in a significant way before the end of the 19th century, early 20th."
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