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Articles

  • Virginity Testing: Zimbabwe’s Response to AIDS

    In one corner of the village, the sun shines through the dusty and cracked windows of the village’s one-room assembly hall. Sitting on the building’s cement floor are 60 girls and young women, the reason for today’s celebration. The day is a chance to teach the young women an important lesson that may one day save their lives.

  • The War Against Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon

    This is a war waged against Palestinian refugees by the government of Lebanon. It is not waged through military campaigns and guerrilla battles as in the Lebanese civil war, but through policies and laws which are slowly choking the life from Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps.

  • The Occupation of Lockheed-Martin Halifax

    Before the invasion of Iraq a group of students and community members occupied Lockheed’s office in an action of non-violent civil disobedience–one of the most important and underreported actions of the anti-war movement.

  • Making Sense of the News in 2004

    Each 24 hours the news cycle groans these days with an overload of content. The stories laid out daily alternate between themes of menace and hope, import and emptiness, meaning and futility.

  • Bush’s State of the Empire Speech

    Bush’s “State of the Union” speech was not in praise of “America” as he claimed–it was about fascism at home and imperialism abroad. It was a surreal vision that placed the U.S. in the center of a divine universe, in which the Chosen People would exterminate its enemies and forcibly enlighten its reluctant allies.

  • The World Wide Web Is Ten Years Old!

    Excuse me, may I have your cell phone? I see you’re wearing a pager; may I have that too? Your lap top computer, if you don’t mind? And I’ll take the palm pilot I see in your shirt pocket.

    Feel like somebody’s bewildered, possibly hostile naked lunch without your high tech toys?

    Welcome to the wrong side of the Digital Divide, the developing world in which hundreds of millions of poor people in the south are left behind the more prosperous people of the north at the lightning speed of the latest computer chip.

  • Beyond Nafta

    For many of us, it’s hard to get excited about another review of NAFTA’s economic successes or failures. It’s not that such an economic review is irrelevant – coping with the economic implications of NAFTA obviously remains central to anyone concerned with social change. But in itself, the economic debate is unlikely to move us much ahead. There are just too many Œwhat-ifs’ involved for any numbers to convince skeptics. (Would business investment in Canada have slowed down if the corporate sector were defeated on NAFTA? Would Canadian companies have been less productive if they didn’t face the pressures of free trade? Would U.S. retaliation against Canadian exports into the U.S. been worse?)

  • Life in Vaginaville

    Somewhere in that great pile of Junos and Emmys, I hope there’s an Elephant on the Table Award for the performer who discovers something perfectly obvious during the making of a television series.

    “The elephant on the table” is how communications experts describe something carefully overlooked and unmentioned but urgently important. It may sound impossible to ignore something so striking as a wild beast lounging in the middle of an ordinary room, but if the elephant is embarrassing enough, human beings can learn to do it.

    Such an award, if it exists, ought to go to Samantha Bee. She’s the sweet-faced Canadian component on The Daily Show, Jon Stewart’s wildly popular half-hour news parody, which recently replaced Mike Bullard’s nightly talk show on CTV.

  • Bolivia

    The multitude of Bolivians who were blocking the roads, building barricades and surrounding the presidential palace – the peasants, miners, street venders, unemployed and many others – were the product of at least a half-century of revolutionary struggle against landlords, mine-owners, big-business people and the U.S. Embassy.

    Beginning with the social revolution of 1952, which expropriated the mines and landed estates of the oligarchy and destroyed the military, the Bolivian workers and peasants forged their own class-based trade unions and militias. State power, however, was taken by the middle-class National Revolutionary Party (MNR), which began a process of re-establishing capitalist hegemony in alliance with the United States.

  • The Contemporary Struggle against Racism in Canada

    Racism continues to be manifest in various ways in Canadian society. It is not a distant “bad” memory, something that previous generations practiced and experienced. Many Canadians acknowledge some history of racial oppression and the need to address it. But efforts are often limited by the habitual contrast of Canadian racism with American racism in a way that encourages moral superiority, drawing on such artifacts as the underground railroad.

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