Erdoğan canceled the concert

Fazil Say has written an open letter to Turkey’s President Erdoğan about his government’s oppression of the arts and artists.

Mr President, Culture Minister and other authorities,

I am writing this letter to you from Peking. I have a concert in China tonight. I have my own pieces in the programme. My three pieces were removed from the programme in Ankara and it was criticized severely, I heard. [Read more...]

Guest post: What advertising is really selling

Originally a comment by latsot on Floating above the ugly fray of politics.

The world of advertising is a strange one. Ah fuck it, I’m going to pull a made-up law out of my arse. Let’s call it Fortran’s Law: any sufficiently long-lived advertising campaign will forget what it’s actually advertising and why it even exists in the first place.

Here in the UK we have animated meerkats selling insurance. [Read more...]

Not all footballers are homophobic

Arsenal did the right thing.

FA Cup winners Arsenal, Paddy Power, Stonewall and the Gay Football Supporters’ Network have again teamed up to help tackle one of the toughest challenges in sport: homophobia in football.

Rainbow coloured boot laces have been dispatched to every single professional player in the UK, including youth and women’s teams, alongside deliveries to all MPs and leading political figures. And we are urging them to show their support by lacing up over the 13th/ 14th September – Rainbow Lace weekend. Fans and grass-root players will also be asked to tweet their support using the official hashtag: #RainbowLaces.

They cheered

Ashley Miller had a horrible, upsetting experience yesterday evening. It should have been a great experience:

As a filmmaker, intersectional scholar, and a huge fan and supporter of the original trailer and campaign for “Dear White People,” I was ecstatic to be able to go see the film here in Columbia, SC.  The film itself didn’t disappoint.  Clearly influenced by Wes Anderson in cinematography, but wholly unique in tone, it was a brilliantly funny, biting, and moving film.  The acting, the directing, the cinematography were all superb, even before you take into account the origin story and budget of the film.

But there was a problem, a big big problem.

Spoilers alert. [Read more...]

Where there should be clarity, there is obscurantism

In a discussion on a philosopher’s Facebook wall yesterday I saw a mention of post-colonial approaches to secularism. I was curious about what those might be, and said something about my curiosity on my Facebook wall, and Meredith Tax gave me some sources. One is this piece in the CHE by Jacques Berlinerblau.

He says there’s a lot of unhelpful imprecision about secularism under foot. [Read more...]