Mahler and me

Wednesday 7 February, 2007

Jörg Königsdorf interviews composer and conductor Pierre Boulez on his selective affinities for the works of Gustav Mahler. From April 2 to 12, Boulez will conduct Mahler's 9 symphonies at Berlin's Philharmonie, alternating with Daniel Barenboim. (Photo © Betty Freeman)
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A bridge to Chechnya

Friday 5 January, 2007

One fifth of the population of Chechnya has died in the war there. The West has played deaf. Studies Without Borders is the initiative of a few French students to bring Chechen students to Europe to study. A drop of hope in an ocean of indifference. By Andre and Raphael Glucksmann.
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Les Minguettes

Monday 18 December, 2006

Since France's first suburban riots took place there in 1981, Les Minguettes has had a serious image problem. The suburb of Lyon is synonymous with integration problems, urban violence and social decay. But having taken the time to look behind the apartment block facades, Anne-Marie Vaterlaus paints a picture not entirely devoid of hope.
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Islam's heritage of violence

Thursday 5 October, 2006

In response to the uproar caused by Benedict XVI's speech in Regensburg, Abdelwahab Meddeb, one of France's most respected Arab writers, considers why peaceful disputes between Christians and Muslims were possible in the Middle Ages but not today. An interview with Michael Mönninger.
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The banalisation of evil

Thursday 28 September, 2006

American first-time novelist Jonathan Littell has created the sensation of the French literary season with "Les Bienviellantes." Michael Mönninger describes the memoirs of a fictional SS officer as scandalous kitch, an epic panorama and eminently worth reading.
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Bucking the blockbuster

Monday 4 September, 2006

Paris is the cinephile's Garden of Eden, yet its arthouse screens are under threat. Having pursued their own form of artistic expression for over 80 years, the Parisian cinemas d'art et d'essai must now use all the ingenuity they can muster to keep bums on seats. By Marc Zitzmann
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Arming Isabelle

Monday 7 August, 2006

Katja Nicodemus raves about Claude Chabrol's new film with his favorite actress, Isabelle Huppert. As an investigative judge in "Comedy of Power," Huppert is a modern femme fatale, mowing down corruption and male condescension with weapons of wit and writ.
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Kowtowing to the Petro Czar

Friday 14 July, 2006

Nothing is forcing the Western democracies to crown the Petro Czar. The only thing supporting the Russian economy is the price per barrel. Its industry is stagnating, and Russia needs the West more than vice versa. The powers meeting in St. Petersburg today have to choose: either they prolong an enormous misunderstanding even after its death, or they bury it altogether. By Andre Glucksmann
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Vietnamisation or Somaliasation?

Wednesday 21 June, 2006

Zarqawi was no Ho Chi Minh, and Iraq is no Vietnam. Across the world today, populations are being taken hostage by lawless usurpers. Somalia is an in vivo laboratory for the abomination of abominations: war against civilians. Either we accept a general Somaliasation and take refuge in an illusionary Eurasian fortress, or we revive a democratic, military and critical European-Atlantic alliance. By Andre Glucksmann.
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France's secret spherical weapon

Thursday, 1 June 2006

The facts are glaring us in the face, explains Herve Le Tellier, in the fourth part of our series in which writers outline their team's chances of World Cup victory. France cannot but win, even with Zidane on board.
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The French malady

Wednesday 24 May, 2006

The Clearstream Affair is just the most recent symptom of a crisis that has been dogging the French Republic for three decades. The time for a "rupture" is at hand. By Andre Glucksmann
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Me?

Monday 8 May, 2006

Were it not for Sigmund Freud, the couch would be a normal piece of furniture. But what's normal anyway? 150 years after his birth, the man who discovered the unconscious has been re-discovered, or maybe buried for good. By Daniel Binswanger
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The Asterix complex

Tuesday 4 April, 2006

French philosopher and novelist Pascal Bruckner has no qualms about bucking public opinion. In an interview with Marko Martin he discusses Gallic fury, suburban rioters' scorched earth methods, the systemic weaknesses of French society and the Finkielkraut Affair.
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Separating truth and belief

Monday 6 March, 2006

A clash of cultures? No, of mindsets. Philosopher Andre Glucksmann on truth and belief, and why the Danish Muhammad cartoons and cartoons about the Holocaust are two different things.
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The right to blaspheme

Tuesday 14 February, 2006

The disconcerting thing about the cartoon conflict is having to remind people that we have the right to commit blasphemy, that picking on the parish priest has long been a national sport. When we talk about anti-Muslim racism, we ask: what race are we talking about? Is Islam genetically transmittable? An open letter by eleven French writers.
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