St. Petersburg Cathedral Mosque
Anonymous asked: but what's wrong with being willing to separate an author from their work? why is that so hard? especially ender's game, which, aside from one or two lines from some stupid boys in the book, holds next to none of card's horrible views. you shouldn't bar good literature just b/c the author is a terrible person.
Do what you want.
I will choose to do the same. OSC is not just a raging homophobe, he actively worked to enact legislation to oppress rights for lgbtq people. He said he would try to bring down the government if they disagreed.
Seriously, screw that guy. There are a thousand books I haven’t yet read that don’t have that guy attached.
this is exactly my position on this kinda thing by the way. I don’t need to separate an author from his work if the author’s a truly terrible human being. nobody’s perfect - I don’t ask anybody to be perfect; I just ask them not to be, you know, nazis, or virulent homophobes. But if they are, then I don’t care how good their work is purported to be. I don’t have to listen to Burzum; there’s no shortage of amazing black metal that isn’t written by racist murderers. the amount of tremendous black metal that meets the “not the work of an appalling horrible person” yardstick is sufficient to excuse me from having to listen to the stuff made by assholes. so when people go into the “I separate the art from the artist” thing, I’m like - why? if we live several lifetimes, we should all be so lucky, we won’t read all the great books or hear all the great music. we can allow artists to be human and make mistakes, even big huge everybody-has-their-personal-lows mistakes, while still saying “artists who are just worthless garbage as people, who actively and unapologetically campaign to make others’ lives worse, don’t deserve to have their work read.” we will not actually miss much; we can put our attention elsewhere. there’s just no shortage of amazing books to read, incredible music to hear. unless one wants to claim “no no, these terrible-people artists are actually the best artists,” in which case I think one might want to more closely examine one’s aesthetics.
how many male novelists does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
- A: The terrible sex had made him feel deeply interesting, like a murder victim.
- A: The beast, which had represented his feelings, was dead. “I think I’ll do a pushup,” he announced to the sea. The sea respected him for it.
- A: [4000 words from the narrator about his feelings on his childhood circumcision]
- A: War is hell.
- A: He straightened his tie. He had lost, but in a romantic way, which meant that he had won. “I’m going to do a pushup,” he announced to his tie. His tie respected him for it, and secretly wished that it could have sex with him.
- A: You wouldn’t understand.
- A: He swore curses at his coworkers. He was making a lot of money. Fuck.
- A: This neighborhood in New York City was very different from the other neighborhood in New York City he’d just been in.
- A: He lit a cigarette. His glass of whiskey lit a cigarette too. “I can only truly love my best friend,” he said, “but not in a gay way. Women wouldn’t understand it. They’re too gay.” Both of the cigarettes agreed.
- A: [4000 words about an isolated encounter with a service worker that borders on racist and goes nowhere]
- A: “The cocaine isn’t the point. The cocaine is a metaphor,” he explained wearily over the pile of cocaine. She folded her arms. She didn’t understand his cocaine. “Didn’t you read my manifesto?” The prostitute had read his manifesto. Why couldn’t she?
- A: This lightbulb is inauthentic.
- A: ”It’s only the institution I have a problem with,” he explained to the empty bar.
- A: The time had come for him to go to war, and also find himself, and also reject the rules of your society.
- A: His alcoholism was different, because someday he was going to die.
- A: [Nothing happens for 450 pages; receives fourteen awards]
More witches and demons
like no, really, one of my favorite things about Black Books as a series is that it is so aware of and in fact insistent on the fantasy of its premise— that people as dysfunctional as Bernard and Fran, who are so obstinately anti-social and unable to interpret any of the social maneuvers happening around them, without the apparent benefit of wealth, can laze around and be bad at everything and oppose work and the premises thereof as totally as they do and hang onto their London real estate
Fun fact: Black Books the shop is actually based on a second hand book shop in Edinburgh, it’s run about as poorly as the one in the show but it’s been around for like 20 years. There’s even a list of rules by the door, one of which is ‘no gold smelting’
Robert Webb re-joins Labour in protest at Russell Brand and wrote an open letter:
Hi. We’ve met about twice, so I should probably reintroduce myself: I’m the other one from Peep Show. I read your thing on revolution in these pages with great interest and some concern. My first reaction was to rejoin the Labour Party. The Jiffy bag containing the plastic membership card and the Tristram Hunt action figure is, I am assured, in the post. I just wanted to tell you why I did that because I thought you might want to hear from someone who a) really likes your work, b) takes you seriously as a thoughtful person and c) thinks you’re wilfully talking through your arse about something very important… link
I fucking hate brand but oh my god do I hate this posh little garbage goblin of a man ten times more.
There’s a twee little cafe attached to a graveyard in kreuzberg and it seems to be patronised entirely by old people and I think that might be a sign of German efficiency.
Grýla by Þrándur Þórarinsson
Grýla, is in Icelandic mythology, a horrifying monster and a giantess living in the mountains of Iceland. She is said to come from the mountains at Christmas in search of naughty children.
The Grýla legend has been frightening to the people of Iceland for many centuries - her name is even mentioned in Snorri Sturluson's thirteenth century Edda. Most of the stories told about Gryla were to frighten children – her favourite dish was a stew of naughty kids and she had an insatiable appetite. Grýla was not directly linked to Christmas until in the 17th century. By that time she had become the mother of the Yule Lads. A public decree was issued in 1746 prohibiting the use of Grýla and the Yule Lads to terrify children.
According to folklore Grýla has been married three times. Her third husband Leppalúði is said to be living with her in their cave in the Dimmuborgir lava fields, with the big black Yule Cat and their sons. As Christmas approaches, Grýla sets off looking for naughty boys and girls. The Grýla legend has appeared in many stories, poems, songs and plays in Iceland and sometimes Grýla dies in the end of the story.
Zeljko Jovanovic: When the glare of the media spotlight fades, Maria will go back to a life of exclusion, without basic documentation or rights
Maria, the “mystery” girl taken away from a Roma couple in Greece was, DNA evidence has shown, the biological daughter of a Roma couple in Bulgaria. Blonde hair and blue eyes was evidence enough for police in Greece, and in two separate cases in Ireland, to take action. But now that it has emerged that Maria is a Roma child, it is painfully predictable that global interest in her fate will fade. Whatever the legal fate of the couple who have been charged with her abduction, Maria, like other Roma children, will have to navigate her way through life suffering illiteracy, unemployment, and segregation in education.
She will have on average 10 years lower life expectancy than the mainstream population due to hunger and malnutrition, squalid housing and substandard healthcare. If European governments or the wider community are really interested in helping Maria and other Roma children like her, they should start with ensuring access to basic documentation and fundamental rights.
I am Roma and have worked on social justice for many years. The incidents in Greece and Ireland should make it uncomfortably clear to the wider public how quickly Europe can still be whipped into a racist hysteria. They also however illustrate an issue that Roma rights groups have campaigned on for years. The lack of official documentation for Roma – highlighted in the absence of appropriate birth certificates and other papers in Maria’s case – is a major reason for Roma exclusion in Europe today.
No country in Europe has accurate statistics for Roma citizens in their official census or other state records. Many Roma do not have birth certificates either; Roma families often forgo registering the birth of a child with local authorities as the cost of obtaining a birth certificate can be prohibitive. Because of this official invisibility, Roma are denied legal protection, public healthcare and the opportunity to enrol their children in school, get a job and register to vote. It also means Roma are at increased risk of human trafficking and miscarriages of justice. If you do not officially exist, it is easy to disappear and be disappeared.
The gaps in official census records for Roma are staggering. A recent census registration campaign carried out by the Open Society Foundations and Roma communities in Hungary achieved a 63% increase in the registered Roma population, from 190,000 to more than 300,000. Huge disparities remain. In Serbia, the 2012 census registered 150,000 Roma; the real number is closer to 400,000.
Some Roma do not officially register their identity due to fear of discrimination. Only six decades ago hatemongers and political leaders sent more than half a million Roma to their deaths for the “collective crime” of simply being Roma; this memory lives on among Roma. Their suspicion of registration is not unfounded. In a recent case in Sweden it was revealed that the police kept a secret and illegal list of more than 4,000 Roma, including many children.
More often, deliberate legal and procedural difficulties put in place by governments restrict Roma from securing proper documentation. A fully documented and registered Roma population means governments must provide fundamental rights such as access to education, healthcare and justice; they must fulfil public job quotas for Roma and include a quota of Roma politicians on electoral rolls. For many governments in Europe, Roma invisibility is politically and economically expedient.
Without official identification documents or legal claims to their property, Roma families are at increased risk of statelessness. A stateless person is not recognised as a citizen by any state. This is important because citizenship is the essential foundation of a person’s legal identity. It is your right to have rights. Many Roma in Europe today are trapped in this legal limbo. One example that illustrates the fate of thousands of Roma is Tarmis Urmin, who fled Kosovo in 1999 to a Roma settlement in Belgrade. Urmin had made the 150km trek to Serbia’s registration office in a vain attempt to obtain documentation. Because his wife has no documents, his four children cannot get documents either. “When I brought my youngest child to be vaccinated the medical staff demanded 2,000 dinars (about €25)” Urmin recounted. “I had no money and could not afford it. They shouted at me and my family that if we know how to make children we should know how to get documents.”
Statelessness exists in western Europe too. Italy is home to thousands of Roma families, many of whom are stateless or at risk of it. They exist in legal limbo, lacking official citizenship for any country, deprived of fundamental civil, political, economic, cultural, and social rights.
Europe’s 12 million Roma continue to endure violent attacks, firebombings and serial killings, yet their official invisibility can be just as deadly.
The treatment of Roma people in the EU is one of the most disgusting things on the planet.