Under the Shadow Flag: A Week in the Vasilika Refugee Camp

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The 2016 Hong Kong International Literary Festival — A Q&A with Phillipa Milne

By Jeffrey Wasserstrom

I’ve had the pleasure of participating in the Hong Kong International Festival in two past years, 2009 and 2015, and found doing so both times memorable. I am happy, therefore, to be heading off soon to be part of the next one, which runs from November 4 to November 13. My past festival activities have ranged from a dialog with Global Voices co-founder Rebecca MacKinnon on the perils and pleasures of “blogging”—back in the late 2000s when that term was only starting to be widely known, hence sometimes needed to be put in quotes—to a presentation eleven months ago, which I’ve written about for this site before, reflecting on the Umbrella Movement’s legacy one year on.   Continue reading


A Blank Page as Big as the World: An Interview with Vanessa Hua

By Olga Kreimer

Like the apocryphal frogs splashing in their warming water until the inevitable end, the characters in Vanessa Hua’s debut, Deceit and Other Possibilities, get into their predicaments first slowly, then very fast. Driven into impossible circumstances by hubris or ambition, desperation pushes them to try any exit. Though their troubles are specific, the unsettling sense of scaling walls too smooth for traction as the water starts to bubble is painfully familiar. That futility — the gaps between what Hua’s characters want and what they get to have — makes the reader root for the break-ins, gunshots, and fires that are their last resorts. It’s easy to recognize the desires that drive them, so even extreme measures feel like reasonable escalation when nothing else works. Continue reading

Tom Hayden, politician and anti-Vietnam War activist; David Maraniss, Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post journalist; and Marilyn Young, New York University history professor discuss how the Vietnam War divided the nation and shaped American culture. The “War at Home” panel discussion on Wednesday, April 27, 2016, was moderated by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Robert Schenkkan as part of the LBJ Library’s three-day Vietnam War Summit.

LBJ Library photo by Jay Godwin 04/27/2016.

In Memory of Tom Hayden

By Darryl Holter

I was saddened to learn of the death of Tom Hayden yesterday morning.  I read a lot of his writings in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, and was especially affected by The Port Huron Statement, a manifesto for the New Left and one of the most important political documents of the times, which was largely written by Tom.  I talked to Tom once at an airport when he was working on Jerry Brown’s campaign for President.   A few years later I wrote him to ask some organizational questions about his LA-based group, Campaign for Economic Democracy, and he wrote back and answered them. Continue reading


Eight Nasty Women Define Success: Grace Bonney’s In the Company of Women

By Lauren Kessler

October 17th was National Boss’s Day — appropriate timing for Grace Bonney’s tour promoting her new book In the Company of Women: Inspiration and Advice from over 100 Makers, Artists, and Entrepreneurs. Bonney, of Design*Sponge fame, moderated a discussion panel that evening at UCLA’s Freud Playhouse, which was hosted by Book Soup and featured eight of the women she interviews in her book: author Roxane Gay, Native fashion designer icon Bethany Yellowtail, comedy writer Shadi Petosky, founder of TransTech Social Enterprises Angelica Ross, artist Tanya Aguiñiga of Aguiñiga Design, founder of Oh Joy graphic design studio Joy Cho, and co-founders of Block Shop Lily and Hopie Stockman. Continue reading


Remembering Tom Hayden

By Mike Davis

Fifty-two years ago this December, an obscure group of young activists, Students for a Democratic Society, held a national council meeting in New York to discuss the next year’s work.  As I recall there were about forty people present, some of them recent veterans of Freedom Summer, others peace and civil rights activists at campuses such as Swarthmore, Michigan, Chicago, Harvard and Tufts.     Continue reading