Newsletter – February 2017

By Allston Mitchell in

Welcome to The Global Dispatches, This month we look at the work of “Operaestrema”, Aaron Carpenè and Stefano Vizioli who have taken Handel to Bhutan, Monteverdi to Japan and Mozart to Cambod – operatic performances that have defied all the odds by creating a fusion of culturally diverse musical, dance and theatrical traditions; Kerry Brown, […]

Orpheus in Japan

By Allston Mitchell in

Last October, one of Japan’s most venerated shrines was host to the opera Orfeo by the Sixteenth century Italian composer Monteverdi performed by western and Japanese opera singers, musicians, dancers, local actors and a state of the art laser sound harp. It was a testament to cross cultural exchange and the hard work and dedication […]

Lewis Lapham’s “Age of Folly”

By Allston Mitchell in

Lewis Lapham may write with the elegance and intelligence of an old-school stylist but there is nothing languid and jaded about him – he is disappointed with the direction that the American political experiment has taken – and in delineating his theme, he cuts to the bone with a very modern sense of injustice and […]

Brazil’s locomotive has stopped

By Nicola Bilotta in

The process of growth and modernization in Brazil in the last fifteen years has always been described as an example to be followed by other developing countries. Today, however, the Brazilian ‘locomotive’ has stopped. The country is going through a dramatic period of political and economic instability. The Olympic Games in 2016 should have been […]

Manipulation and lies threaten media and politicians

By Francis Ghilès in

People in the world beyond the US who live in authoritarian regimes – from the Middle East to Asia, Africa and South America are scratching their head is disbelief. A list of features of the US presidential campaign and the first days of Donald Trump’s presidency remind them of presidential or general election campaigns at […]

Geronimo: The Warrior

By Edward Rielly in

This article was originally published in The Public Domain Review under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 license. If you wish to reuse it please see: ======================================== Geronimo (1829-1909), whose given name was Goyahkla, sometimes spelled Goyathlay, is one of the most famous figures in the history of the American Indian resistance effort. His name is virtually synonymous […]

Son House – Preachin’ the Blues

By Gary Burnett in

The blues has had an uneasy tension with the church. For many God-fearing people in the deep South, blues music was difficult to reconcile with a church-going lifestyle, because of its association with the juke joint and hard liquor drinking, the association that some bluesmen claimed with the devil and the whole idea of “mojo.” […]

Zhou Youguang, the real hero of modern China

By Kerry Brown in

In the second week of January 2017, one of the greatest figures of modern times died peacefully in Beijing. He was 111 years old. His life had spanned the tumultuous period of  modern Chinese history. Born in the fading years of the Qing dynasty, he was a teenager during the chaos of the republican era. […]

The deep troubles of Italian banks

By Mitja Stefancic in

Italy is still in the midst of a severe banking crisis. Given the dimensions of the country’s financial system, such a crisis, if not properly managed, could adversely affect the European banking system. To prevent this, it is important to understand the origins of the problems and, thereby, avoid a prolonged period of crisis. Despite […]

John Berger, witness to the human condition

By Anthony Barnett in

The world is a much colder place. A source of indefatigable energy has completed its physical life. The fires John lit in so many of us will live on. None with his intensity. John’s laughter, over a table, down the phone, filled your lungs. Accompanying its shared pleasure there was always the thrill of menace. […]

Newsletter – January 2017

By Allston Mitchell in

Welcome to The Global Dispatches, Anthony Barnett looks back at the life of his friend John Berger; Richard Barwell examines just how exactly Central Banks set their interest rates; Sergii Leshchenko, a Ukrainian journalist and a member of the Verkhovna Rada looks at the current state of the Ukrainian revolution; Barbara Casu Lukac, Professor of […]

The top rich in Europe since 1300

By Guido Alfani in

In the renewed interest in long-term trends in economic inequality, particular attention has been paid to the share of income or wealth earned or owned by the top 1%, 5%, or 10%. The share of the richest is both interesting on its own terms (it shows us how ‘rich’ better-off people actually were), and as […]

Brexit and the banks

By Barbara Casu Lukac in

The outcome of the Brexit referendum on 23 June 2016 has raised many questions, including the evaluation of the ex-ante costs to the UK, the negotiation of new trade agreements, and the implications of reducing freedom of movement in the UK labour market. Yet, one of the most talked about issues relates to the potential […]

How Central Banks Set Interest Rates

By Richard Barwell in

Central bankers habitually argue amongst themselves about the appropriate conduct of monetary policy; everyone knows that. The 24/7 coverage of central banks in the media and financial markets fixates on a never-ending intellectual tug of war between ‘hawks’ and doves’ within the central banks.  Academics use the dissent that we can see in the votes […]

Ukraine’s corrupt counter-revolution

By Sergii Leshchenko in

Last week, as the world prepared for the Christmas holidays, Ukrainian MPs gathered in parliament at 10am, and departed 20 hours later. This legislative marathon happens every year, when, in a regime of secrecy and sleeplessness, Ukraine’s parliamentarians pass the budget for Europe’s biggest country. After all, when else can you carve up assets in […]

Catalonia revisited: farewell to great expectations?

By Patrice de Beer in

It can sometimes be sensible to revisit oneself. Especially in this ever-changing and ever-deceiving world of ours. Just to remind ourselves, and our readers, that we are all fallible and, at times, carried away by hopes or fears. This was the case when, ten years ago, I wrote a piece on Ukraine’s first free elections […]