Blogs

by William Egginton | 09.10.2009
Used to describe a particular variant of religious belief, the concept of fundamentalism has its origins in relatively recent US Protestantism, where it was positively connoted by those who identified as fundamentalist in reaction to liberal theology and biblical criticism.
by Jonathan Mayhew | 09.09.2009
The phenomenon of "swing" has received a lot of attention.  Does it swing or doesn't it?  Today I'd like to consider another quality, which I am going to call the "lilt," a rapid up-and-down motion seen in stride piano and in later forms of jazz as well.  (I'll get to my related consideration of "swing" in a subsequent post.)
by Ato Quayson | 09.09.2009
The evidence of material on African cities does not inspire confidence.  They are increasingly overcrowded with no clear plan for matching population growth to available facilities.  Sewage and garbage disposal are perennial problems. The hope some five decades ago when many countries gained freedom from their former colonial masters was that the cities would act as engines of growth.
by Ban Wang | 09.08.2009
Invoked as antidote to oriental authoritarianism, human rights talk often draws a line between us and them, between other cultures bereft of rights and the West blessed with rights and liberty.
by Ricardo Padrón | 09.08.2009
I should put my cards on the table and confess that I am not a cervantista, a specialist in Cervantes.  To some extent, this has to do with my own suspicion that critical commentary on certain texts, like Don Quixote, has become saturated.
by Alec Hanley Bemis | 09.06.2009
One reason I stopped being a full-time music writer is that I hate feeling compelled to write about what I'm hearing when language fails to do justice to the sound. It should also go without saying that, at times, what one sees at a concert actually seems even more important than the music.
by Brian Reed | 09.06.2009
Fall has arrived in Seattle.  The first cold rain began on Friday.  I've been holed up at home, avoiding the wet as long as possible.  While going through boxes in my office, I came across a book that I must have bought in Moscow in 1990, though I can't remember doing so:  Nikolai Nekrasov's Selected Works. 
by Jonathan Mayhew | 09.04.2009
What does "improvisation" mean?  In the first place, every performance takes place in time, and will vary from any other performance.  Someone playing the melody of "Stardust" pretty much "as written" will still be improvising the phrasing, tempo, etc...

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