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Danny Schechter, Prince of the American Left

Danny SchechterDanny Schechter was a prince of the American Left, someone who always showed up, who kept pace with the beat of change and could be counted on to see that the values of social justice were represented in the media, whether at WBCN-FM in Boston where as “Danny Schechter the News Dissector” he got his start, or at CNN where he was a producer, or at ABC where as a producer for 20/20 he won two National News Emmys. Perhaps his greatest journalistic achievement was South Africa Now, a weekly television news magazine about South Africa at a most critical moment in its history, which ran on public television in the US and in more than thirty foreign countries from 1988-91. When Nelson Mandela toured the US after his release from prison, Danny was the only American documentary filmmaker Mandela trusted to travel with him and to film the tour.

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What we’re reading this Valentine’s

My Florence is photographer Art Shay’s heartbreaking love song to his tender, fierce, infinitely beloved late wife.  Grab a kleenex and watch this:

Then pick up a copy to slip in with some chocolates for the one you love.

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Assia Djebar: 1936-2015

Assia_Djebar

It is with extreme sadness that we mourn the great Assia Djebar, who passed away this week at the age of seventy-eight.

An admired and beloved author, translator, and filmmaker, Djebar was born Fatima-Zohra Imalayen on June 30, 1936, in the Algerian town of Cherchell.  Her novels and poems boldly face the challenges and struggles she knew as a feminist living under patriarchy and an intellectual living under colonialism and its aftermath.  Djebar’s writing, marked by a regal unwillingness to compromise in the face of ethical, linguistic, and narrative complexities, has attracted devoted followers around the world, and received numerous awards and recognitions, including the Venice International Critics’ Prize, the Neustadt International Prize for Literature, the Yourcenar Prize,  the Frankfurt Peace Prize, and a knighthood in France’s Legion of Honor.  She was the first Algerian woman to be admitted to France’s prestigious École Normale Supérieure, and the first writer from the Maghreb to be admitted to the Académie Française.

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