From the Journal of Democracy, Olivier Roy (EUI): There Will Be No Islamist Revolution; and Hillel Fradkin (Hudson): Arab Democracy or Islamist Revolution? From Qantara, an interview with Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi; and an interview with Egyptian political scientist Ammar Ali Hassan ''The Constitution is a catastrophe''. Two years after the beginning of the Arab Spring, the promise of revolutions remains unclear; what we have learned: social media is a very inadequate tool for revolutionary change. The Arab Spring and the Internet: Roundup of recent studies that bring a scholarly, data-driven lens to questions around the Arab Spring. As the chaotic transition towards democracy continues in North Africa and Yemen, the fighting in Syria is intensifying — and, less noticed, opposition to the Arab monarchies is growing. This could be the birth of an independent Kurdish state: The great losers in the breakup of the Ottoman empire could be winners in the wake of Syria's civil war and the Arab spring.
From The Weekly Standard, Gertrude Himmelfarb on compassionate conservatism, properly understood. Mali is not a Stan: When it comes to covering Africa's latest conflict, it's suddenly amateur hour. For the past 40 years, Amanda Feilding, countess of Wemyss and March, has worked tirelessly to break down taboos surrounding LSD and other psychoactive drugs. Does the “end of history illusion” really exist or has hype and stylish presentation generated an illusory illusion? Christine Kim interviews Ai-jen Poo, one of Time and Newsweek’s most influential people of 2012, who works to address a swiftly aging population, and an exploited workforce, by reforming domestic labor standards. Who will be the new Miramax? An excerpt from Inside Track for Independent Filmmakers: Get Your Movie Made, Get Your Movie Seen and Turn the Tables on Hollywood by Adam Leipzig.
Nancy H. Hornberger (Penn) and Karl F. Swinhart (Chicago): Bilingual Intercultural Education and Andean Hip Hop: Transnational Sites for Indigenous Language and Identity. Paolo Massa and Federico Scrinzi (Bruno Kessler): Manypedia: Comparing Language Points of View of Wikipedia Communities. On the Spanish island of La Gomera, an ancient whistling language that once seemed to be dying out is now undergoing a revival. Barbara King on Jared Diamond, a New Guinea campfire, and why we should want to speak five languages. From Geocurrents, is it English or Engelsk? Asya Pereltsvaig on Indo-European languages that have recently received much attention in the press and the blogosphere (and part 2 and part 3); and Taiwanese linguist Sung Li-may races to save the dying Kanakanavu language. Tackling the faux pas of the German language: From "doner murders" to "moors' heads," German is full of discriminatory terms.
From The Hairpin, Nicole Cliffe and Edith Zimmerman debate Amazon and other blog affiliate programs (and part 2). Christiane Hoffmann and Rene Pfister on Germany and Israel, a relationship full of misunderstandings. How close are we to Doomsday? The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists says we’re five minutes to midnight. Christopher Matthews on the economics of immigration: Who wins, who loses and why. From FDL, a book salon on How Sex Became a Civil Liberty by Leigh Ann Wheeler. Luc Christiaensen and Lorraine Telfer-Taivainen on measuring poverty over time. Will machines ever master translation? Language translation is proving to be one of the hardest tasks to automate — and one of the most important. Jane Shilling reviews The Examined Life: How We Lose and Find Ourselves by Stephen Grosz. Holy crap! 27 percent of Americans believe God will determine the Super Bowl’s outcome.
From Grantland, from a new series on the Winners' History of Rock and Roll, here is part 1: Led Zeppelin, part 2: Kiss, part 3: Bon Jovi, and part 4: Aerosmith. Did the American songbook kill jazz? Jazz has venerated its own traditions for so long that the music seems stale and the audience is gone. Can recordings of classical music ever be in concert with concert hall performances? The quasi-Marxist pop star: A listen to Ke$ha’s body of work suggests that there is much more going on under the surface than is perhaps apparent at first glance. Mary McCarthy writes in defense of Air Supply: Making love and 70s soft rock sonnets out of nothing at all. Benjamin Shapiro on reasons why it's impossible to get laid on tour. Research suggests alternative music taste in teens predicts criminal behavior. Mark my words, internet: melodica virtuosity will have its day on YouTube.