?From the great beyond into the present? ? an interview with Jo Lendle

Hanser publisher Jo Lendle talks about gentle adjustments of languages and marketing strategies.... more more

GoetheInstitute

12/07/2005

Magazine Roundup

Magazine Roundup, which appears every Tuesday at 12 p.m., is originally published by Perlentaucher.

Le Figaro | Foreign Affairs | Plus-Minus | L'Espresso | The Spectator | Revista de Libros | Elet es Irodalom | Al Ahram | Die Weltwoche | New York Times Magazine


Le Figaro, 09.07.2005 (France)

In the context of the attacks on London, the French writer and essayist Pascal Bruckner warns of a widespread European "pacification rhetoric" around the terrorist threat and the denial of it. His first reaction to the most recent attacks: "Is this due to English isolationism? Or is it due to a tradition which has already demonstrated itself with respect to Nazism? At any rate, Great Britain is as unwilling to bow down to the apocalyptic destructive will today as it was yesterday. It opposes in the 'Churchill way'. In contrast to the Spanish after the attacks in Atocha, the English react cold-blooded. They don't demand from their government that their troops on the American side in Iraq be pulled out. (...) On top of that, Blair together with his people, continues a tradition of freedom for which I suspect continental Europe has lost its taste." (More about Bruckner here and here)


Foreign Affairs, 01.07.2005 (USA)


Robert S. Leiken describes the new nightmare of American security authorities: the mujahideen with European passport: "In smoky coffeehouses in Rotterdam and Copenhagen, makeshift prayer halls in Hamburg and Brussels, Islamic bookstalls in Birmingham and 'Londonistan', and the prisons of Madrid, Milan, and Marseilles, immigrants or their descendants are volunteering for jihad against the West. It was a Dutch Muslim of Moroccan descent, born and socialized in Europe, who murdered the filmmaker Theo van Gogh in Amsterdam last November. A Nixon Center study of 373 mujahideen in western Europe and North America between 1993 and 2004 found more than twice as many Frenchmen as Saudis and more Britons than Sudanese, Yemenites, Emiratis, Lebanese, or Libyans. Fully a quarter of the jihadists it listed were western European nationals - eligible to travel visa-free to the United States."


Plus - Minus, 09.07.2005 (Poland)

The philosopher Agnes Heller attacks "some well-known American and German intellectuals", who seek to explain terrorism either as the rebellion of the poor against the rich, the losers against the winners of capitalist globalisation, or as an almost natural reaction against American imperialism. "The people behind global terror are themselves global capitalists, just like Hitler was supported by German industrialists and financiers. Anti-capitalism merely serves as a slogan to direct massive resentment against the rich and to wage a racist or religious war. Many of them are frustrated intellectuals – young people who want to be remarkable in a very unremarkable world, with big ambitions but little talent, or whose careers were hindered for other reasons." (More about Agnes Heller here and here)


L`Espresso, 14.07.2005 (Italy)

The Polish writer Andrzej Stasiuk does not understand why everyone is afraid of the Polish plumber. He wonders a bit about the greater symbolic importance of a professional class, which only was powerful under communism. "He took a down-payment, one made out a time for him to come but he never came then. He came when it suited him. For example after a week. Manky, eating a meal, consumed by the need for a shower, the occupants received him nonetheless like a saviour. They offered him coffee, food and alcohol and worshipped him. The plumber ate, drank, listened to all the flattering remarks and then went about his work with a worthy lethargy. He screwed around somewhere, took something off, caused a disastrous flood in the kitchen or in the bathroom and then suddenly, having lost interest, claimed to be missing a part, left the place an promised to come back the next day, only to return a week later, to take another payment."


The Spectator, 09.07.2005 (UK)

The genocide of the Indians, lynchings of blacks, Pinochet, the Holocaust, and now Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib – the monument at Ground Zero is the expression of an "Ultimate Guilty Complex", writes Mark Steyn, who would have liked to see more Western self-confidence at the site. "I never cared for the Twin Towers, which were never anything more than a couple of oversized slabs of Seventies tat. But once the Islamonutters had taken them down and the various 'internationally acclaimed architects' began submitting designs of ever more limpid tastefulness, I decided Donald Trump had it right: rebuild the ugly muthas but make 'em taller, and stick a giant extended middle finger on the top of each one, or maybe pose that Saddam statue hanging sideways off the roof so he’s being toppled in perpetuity. The latest hastily revised design for the new Freedom Tower eliminates the 'life-affirming vertical gardens' and other milquetoast features proposed by the architect Daniel Libeskind but it’s still a feeble un-American wimp-out."


Revista de Libros, 08.07.2005 (Chile)

Peruvian author Alfredo Bryce Echenique meditates on the past and future of the Latin American city: "While in North America, the original core of the city, the symbol of colonisation, was represented by the 'fort' as we know it from Wild West movies, behind whose walls settlers barricaded themselves and were in no way dependent on local labour, the founders of South American cities – the representatives of the Counter-Reformation and the Inquisiion, Catholicism and aristocracy – gathered the masses of natives – their future servants – on a large square in the centre, and let them feel the might of their new masters on their own bodies." The fast growing South American cities of the present, "which defy state control and all attempts at urban rationality," the main role model is Miami – now the de facto capital city of Latin America."


Elet es Irodalom, 08.07.2005 (Hungary)

Hungarian writer György Konrad makes a plea for new ideas on European (and the EU): "The substance of Europe is curiosity (perhaps the most venal sin and the most charming virtue), the hunger to learn and research, the desire to understand, the hedonism of the brain. What's special about Europe is the lively dialogue between tradition and innovation, the removal of the books from the monasteries during the Gutenberg revolution, the emergence of independent islands of intellectuals... Through works of art, we are able to understand other peoples. Reading novels is a well known method of practising empathy. If you want a Union, then you should put yourselves in the shoes of other Europeans, for example by reading their literature. Let us recognise our own complexity, so that we can enjoy and amuse ourselves!"


Al Ahram Weekly, 07.07.2005 (Egypt)

That hiphop has transformed itself from a local Afro-American subculture to global youth culture and a economic powerhouse is now a commonplace. What's new is Hesham Samy Abdel-Alim's approach. Politically he's more outspoken than subtle, but nonetheless refreshing. In an lengthy article he discusses the worldwide march of hiphop and the post-traditional Islamic identity: "What we are witnessing is a massive movement of Muslim artists who are networked around the world through the power of hip hop culture." Calling the resulting community as a "transglobal hiphop umma", he describes its representatives – from the New York underground icon Mos Def to Palestinian rappers – as the "avant-garde of modern Islam". He finishes by asking: "Will this new knowledge transform our view about the impact of popular culture, particularly hip hop culture, in constructing an Islam appropriate to the needs of contemporary society?"


Die Weltwoche, 07.07.2005 (Switzerland)

Writing under a pseudonym, Katharina Wille-Gut describes in good-humoured detail the arduous life of the noble housewives in Zurich's "Gold Coast". "Concerning partnership, we still-youngish Gold Coast Women are pretty passionate. The result is fewer separations and divorces than in Oberglatt or Emmenbrücke. At worst, when marital crises get completely out of hand, we have a look at the job market, and flirt with financial independence. With crushing results. For a single Thierry-Mugler suit – I worked this out years ago – I would have to work for two entire weeks. My marriage isn't that bad, I said to myself over a glass of champagne at the Savoy, quit the job and devoted myself from then on to successfully performing my wifely tasks" (here the book).


The New York Times Magazine, 10.07.2005 (USA)


James Bennet writes a long portrait on Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, wondering whether he really stands behind a policy of openness and democracy, or if he's just a traditional Arab dictator whose Western mask is slowly crumbling. "Although he is viewed in Washington as possibly a mere figurehead, he says he is just at the point of consolidating control by removing the so-called old guard of his father's government and installing change-minded technocrats. While his Syrian critics see him as trapped in the system created by his father, or complicit in it, or simply uncertain what to do, Assad insists he has a plan but is implementing it at a rate that Syria can manage, given its turbulent past and social divides. In any event, he is acting like a man with plenty of time."

Get the signandsight newsletter for regular updates on feature articles.
signandsight.com - let's talk european.

 
More articles

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 27 March, 2012

The Republicans are waging a war against women, the New York Magazine declares. Perhaps it's because women are so unabashed about reading porn in public - that's according to publisher Beatriz de Moura in El Pais Semanal, at least. Polityka remembers Operation Reinhard. Tensions are growing between Poland and Hungary as Victor Orban spreads his influence, prompting ruminations on East European absurdity from both Elet es Irodalom and salon.eu.sk. Wired is keeping its eyes peeled on the only unassuming sounding Utah Data Center.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 20 March, 2012

In Telerama, Benjamin Stora grabs hold of the Algerian boomerang. In Eurozine, Slavenka Drakulic tells the Venetians that they should be very scared of Chinese money. Bela Tarr tells the Frankfurter Rundschau and the Berliner Zeitung that his "Turin Horse", which ends in total darkness was not intended to depress. In die Welt, historian Dan Diner cannot agree with Timothy Snyder's "Bloodlands": National Socialism was not like Communism - because of Auschwitz.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 13 March, 2012

In Perfil author Martin Kohn explains why Argentina would be less Argentinian if it won back the Falklands. In Il sole 24 ore, Armando Massarenti describes the Italians as a pack of illiterates sitting atop a treasure trove. Polityka introduces the Polish bestseller of the season: Danuta Walesa's autobiography. L'Express looks into the state of Japanese literature one year after Fukushima.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 6 March, 2012

In Merkur, Stephan Wackwitz muses on poetry and absurdity in Tiflis. Outlook India happens on the 1980s Indian answer to "The Artist". Bloomberg Businessweek climbs into the cuckoo's nest with the German Samwar brothers. Salon.eu.sk learns how to line the pockets of a Slovenian politician. In the Süddeutsche Zeitung, Navid Kermani reports back impressed from the Karachi Literature Festival.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 28 February, 2012

In La Vie des idees, historian Anastassios Anastassiadis explains why we should go easy on Greece. Author Aleksandar Hemon describes in Guernica how ethnic identity is indoctrinated in the classroom in Bosnia and Herzogovina. In Eurozine, Klaus-Michael Bogdal examines how Europe invented the Gypsies. Elet es Irodalon praises the hygiene obsession of German journalists. And Polityka pinpoints Polish schizophrenia.

read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 21 February, 2012

The New Republic sees a war being waged in the USA against women's rights. For Rue89, people who put naked women on the front page of a newspaper should not be surprised if they go to jail. In Elet es Irodalom, historian Mirta Nunez Daaz-Balart explains why the wounds of the Franco regime never healed. In Eurozine, Stephen Holmes and Ivan Krastev see little in common between the protests in Russia and those in the Arab world.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 14 February, 2012

In Letras Libras Enrique Krauze and Javier Sicilia fight over anarchy levels. In Elet es Irodalom Balint Kadar wants Budapest to jump on the Berlin bandwagon. In Le Monde Imre Kertesz has given up practically all hope for a democratic Hungary. Polityka ponders poetic inspiration and Wislawa Szymborska's "I don't know". In Espressso, Umberto Eco gets eschatological.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 7 February, 2012

Poland's youth have taken to the streets to protest against Acta and Donald Tusk has listened, Polityka explains. Himal and the Economist report on the repression of homosexuality in the Muslim world. Outlook India doesn't understand why there will be no "Dragon Tattoo" film in India. And in Eurozine, Slavenka Drakulic looks at how close the Serbs are to eating grass.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 31 January, 2012

In the French Huffington Post, philosopher Catherine Clement explains why the griot Youssou N'Dour had next to no chance of becoming Senegal's president. Peter Sloterdijk (in Le Monde) and Umberto Eco (in Espresso) share their thoughts about forgetting. Al Ahram examines the post-electoral depression of Egypt's young revolutionaries. And in Eurozine, Kenan Malik defends freedom of opinion against those who want the world to go to sleep.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 24 January, 2012

TeaserPicIl Sole Ore weeps at the death of a laughing Vincenzo Consolo. In Babelia, Javier Goma Lanzon cries: Praise me, please! Osteuropa asks: Hungaria, quo vadis? The newborn French Huffington Post heralds the birth of the individual in the wake of the Arab Spring. Outlook India is infuriated by the cowardliness of Indian politicians in the face of religious fanatics.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 17 January, 2012

TeaserPicIn Nepszabadsag the dramatist György Spiro recognises 19th century France in Hungary today. Peter Nadas, though, in Lettre International and salon.eu.sk, is holding out hope for his country's modernisation. In Open Democracy, Boris Akunin and Alexei Navalny wish Russia was as influential as America - or China. And in Lettras Libras, Peter Hamill compares Mexico with a mafia film by the Maquis de Sade.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 10 January, 2012

Are books about to become a sort of author-translator wiki, asks Il Sole 24 Ore. Rue 89 reports on the "Tango Wars" in downtown Buenos Aires. Elet es Irodalom posits a future for political poetry. In Merkur, Mikhail Shishkin encounters Russian pain in Switzerland. Die Welt discovers the terror of the new inside the collapse of the old in Andrea Breth's staging of Isaak Babel's "Maria". And Poetry Foundation waits for refugees in Lampedusa.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Wednesday 4 January, 2012

TeaserPicTechnology Review sees Apple as the next Big Brother. In Eurozine, Per Wirten still fears the demons of the European project. Al Ahram Weekly features Youssef Rakha's sarcastic "The honourable citizen manifesto". Revista Piaui profiles Iraqi-Norwegian geologist Farouk Al-Kasim. Slate.fr comments on the free e-book versions of Celine's work. And Die Welt celebrates the return of Palais Schaumburg.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 13 December, 2011

TeaserPicAndre Glucksman in Tagesspiegel looks at the impact of the Putinist plague on Russia and Europe. In Letras Libras Martin Caparros celebrates the Kindle as book. György Dalos has little hope that Hungary's intellectuals can help get their country out of the doldrums. Le Monde finds Cioran with his head up the skirt of a young German woman. The NYT celebrates the spread of N'Ko, the West African text messaging alphabet.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 6 December, 2011

TeaserPicMicroMega cheers recent landmark Mafia convictions in Milan. Volltext champions Hermann Broch. Elet es Irodalom calls the Orban government’s attack on cultural heritage "Talibanisation". Magyar Narancs is ambiguous about new negotiations with the IMF. Telerama recommends the icon of anti-colonialism Frantz Fanon. Salon.eu.sk quips about the dubious election results in Russia, and voices in the German press mark the passing of Christa Wolf. And in the Anglophone press Wired profiles Jeff Bezos, while the Columbia Journalism Review polemicises the future of internet journalism.
read more