The ninth installment of Intelatin producer Sergio Muñoz's discussion series with Racecraft: The Soul of Inequality in American Life co-author Karen Fields is now available online. Featuring guest Dr. Asia Leeds, professor of African Diaspora Studies at Spelman College, and led by K-Beach radio host Miz, this installation take the Fields' work out of the continental US and applies it to the entire Western hemisphere.
Over the course of the last several months, Karen E. Fields's work has acted as the cornerstone for the series’s discussions on “race-crafting,” or the construction of racial myths in American society.
In this installment, Dr. Leeds takes the methodology of Racecraft to Costa Rica, and speaks to the racial dimensions of the word “American” once people leave the continental US.
Visit the podcast archive at the Intelatin Cloudcast to download or listen to the shows in full.
Only a few days ago, another round of violence in the West Bank signaled the end of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks—talks which after a five-year hiatus, had only resumed in July. A secret raid on a refugee district by Israeli forces and the subsequent death of three Palestinians has prompted Palestinian leadership to suspend the meetings, exposing the fragility of these US-sponsored negotiations. The tragedy of this event echoes activist Josh Ruebner’s comments from last month at Mondoweiss, where he argued that Obama’s appointment of “pro-Israel ideological perspectives” to achieve lasting peace exemplified Einstein’s definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
Yesterday, Tariq Ali published an op-ed denouncing possible United States military intervention in Syria. Ali accuses the United States of stretching their intelligence reports as an excuse to further stir the civil war and assist the opposition they had armed. He writes:
The Syrian regime was slowly re-establishing its control over the country against the opposition armed by the West and its tributary states in the region (Saudi Arabia and Qatar). This situation required correction. The opposition in this depressing civil war needed to be strengthened militarily and psychologically.
With the White House having announced that the recent chemical attacks in Syria were unequivocally the work of the Assad regime, many are anxious to see whether the Obama administration will now pursue the promised military intervention. To elaborate on his editorial piece, Tariq Ali joined Steven Clemons, Washington editor-at-large for The Atlantic, on Democracy Now to discuss who is to blame for the use of chemical weapons in Syria and the politics of a Syrian invasion.
Joshua Mostafa, writing in Sydney Review of Books, praises Emily Apter’s Against World Literature: On the Politics of Untranslatability, writing “there is much value in Apter’s insights into the ambiguous nature of translation and language barriers.” Though Mostafa has some reservations about the discourse of World Literature on a whole, especially the “linguistic turn” in philosophy, of which Apter can be considered a part, Mostafa affirms the usefulness of Apter’s book by using it to critique the current status of Australian literature.
Rather than strive for world-recognition or the translation of many aboriginal works into English, Apter’s book challenges Australian literature:
to pluralise itself, to recognise and foster Australian literatures of many languages, the literatures of its indigenous as well as its settler population; it is to create the conditions in which ‘Australian English Literature’ is not a tautologous phrase of hand-wringing political correctness, but a meaningful descriptor for one literature among many.
Visit Sydney Review of Books to read the review in full.