- Via theguardian.com
Their arrival has remade Robin’s neighborhood, and many others in New York City. They come demanding changes far greater than ridding the neighborhood of chickens and pigeons. They are demanding – and getting – better schools, more sympathetic police and more city resources.
They can do this because they come with money, and as such immediately occupy a primary position in the neighborhood. This position allows them to rebuild the area in their image, without taking into account what has come before, or what is already there.
City planners and the media applaud this transformation because of a false, but all too prevalent, assumption that a poor or rough neighborhood does not have a culture worth understanding and saving. That dogs and cats are better than pigeons and chickens.
Once a neighborhood has been changed, economically whitewashed, the changes are cemented in place by use of zoning laws and historical preservation boards. These laws, often enacted by liberals who claim to be egalitarian, limit the stock of homes, which further pushes prices and rents higher, and which further reduces who can afford to live in the neighborhood.
Cities do change, often for the better. But change is not the issue alone, it is who and what is driving that change, and whether the benefits are accessible to everyone.
Fourteen nations listed below are in agreement to deposit 65 percent of all foreign currency reserves in a shared reserve fund to France. The countries established the Monetary and Economic Union of West Africa. Their currency, the CFA-Franc, is printed under supervision of the French National Bank in Chamaliéres, France.
Christof Lehmann wrote for nsnbc.me in 2012, “France is indebting and enslaving Africans by means of Africa’s own wealth; for example: 12.0000 billion invested at three percent creates 360 billion in interests which France grants as credits to Africa at an interest rate of five to six percent or more. The allegory of ‘Bleeding Africa and Feeding France’ is no exaggeration, not alarmist, and not revolutionary.”
All numbers below according to the World Bank…..
(via intellectuellenoire)- Via atlantablackstar.com
- Via chicagotribune.com
Dr. Steven Salaita was hired for a tenured faculty position in the American Indian Studies Program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in October 2013. A tenured professor at Virginia Tech, Saltaita resigned his position there to accept UIUC’s offer. Though he has made overtly pro-Israeli statements and spoken out against antisemitism, after Salaita made political statements on Twitter in support of Palestinians and against Israel’s military actions in Gaza, the UIUC administration characterized his opinions as “uncivil” and supposedly undertook an assessment of him that formed the basis for their decision. After investigation by scholars and the Center for Constitutional Rights, which determined that UIUC’s actions were a “betrayal of academic freedom,” it has come to light that the Chancellor’s & Board of Trustees’ actions did not directly stem from UIUC’s concern over Salaita’s politics. In actuality, the provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs was unaware of controversy surrounding Salaita’s statements until lat July. The decision was, in fact, made with little to no concern for intellectual or academic issues, and did not involve university faculty members or departments.
The Board of Trustees voted to rescind the offer, citing Salaita’s political opinions. After just days of investigation, the university’s Chancellor revealed that the decision to “dehire” Salaita was not in line with her wishes, those of Trustees, or the faculty. Rather, the decision was made to appease major donors who opposed Salaita’s views. In a previous statement, Salaita asserted, “this is part of a nationwide, concerted effort by wealthy and well-organized groups to attack pro-Palestinian students and faculty and silence their speech.”
- Via theguardian.comOur society constantly proclaims that anyone can make it if they just try hard enough, all the while reinforcing privilege and putting increasing pressure on its overstretched and exhausted citizens. An increasing number of people fail, feeling humiliated, guilty and ashamed. We are forever told that we are freer to choose the course of our lives than ever before, but the freedom to choose outside the success narrative is limited. Furthermore, those who fail are deemed to be losers or scroungers, taking advantage of our social security system.A neoliberal meritocracy would have us believe that success depends on individual effort and talents, meaning responsibility lies entirely with the individual and authorities should give people as much freedom as possible to achieve this goal. For those who believe in the fairytale of unrestricted choice, self-government and self-management are the pre-eminent political messages, especially if they appear to promise freedom. Along with the idea of the perfectible individual, the freedom we perceive ourselves as having in the west is the greatest untruth of this day and age.
UNDOCUMENTAR is a web documentary on the daily realities faced by undocumented migrants living in Europe. Watch and share!
Until mid-November, I’m going to be a Visiting Scholar at the University of Cape Town’s African Centre for Cities. If you’re around on October 8th, please join me for my seminar, ‘Entrepreneurs and consumers: complicit masculinity on the African urban periphery’. Here is the abstract:
- Via africancentreforcities.netThe talk explores the relationship between masculinity and work in the double context of protracted economic and political crisis in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. It draws on participant observation fieldwork and interviews with men in Abidjan’s informal sector from 2008 to 2009, and is supplemented by visual data. Ivoirian men who engage in informal activities overwhelmingly claim that they cannot be viable marriage partners, and are thus incapable of achieving adult masculinity. I examine two groups of men: political propagandists (orators) and mobile street vendors, to understand how men affirm themselves in the absence of steady and dignifying work. Both groups rejected the wage-earning working ideal as “Francophone” and asserted alternative modalities of economic participation as “Anglophone” men: entrepreneurs or consumers. Orators used ties to President Laurent Gbagbo’s political regime to secure livelihoods and pursue entrepreneurial identities. Vendors bypassed the state and asserted consumerist models of black masculinity from across the African diaspora. I employ “complicit masculinity” to examine how a relationship to capital mediates masculine identity. In doing so I demonstrate how men’s desires to counter gendered socioeconomic exclusion generate consent to neoliberal capitalism.