Newsletter – March 2015

Welcome to The Global Dispatches

This month Alessandra Quattrocchi interviews Mike Leigh the director of “Mr Turner”; Alison Pargeter senior research fellow at the Royal United Services Institute takes a look at post-Qadhafi Libya and its complex array of struggles in which ambitions for power, claims to legitimacy, the taint of the past, and ownership of the 2011 revolution are among the key dividing lines; José Ignacio Torreblanca senior policy fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations questions whether or not the existence of the European Union can be guaranteed given that half the continent remains entangled in semantic games over whether they are signing up to a programme or an interim agreement – and the other half question whether the project makes any sense at all; Irene Dogmatic visits the Thai City of Chiang Rai and the White Temple that the artist Chalermchai Kositpipat has created as an offering to Lord Buddha; Professor of Medieval History Alessandro Barbero examines a defining moment in European history, the Battle of Poitiers in 732 AC when Charles Martel defeated the "wali" of al-Andalus and much more...

Battle of Poitiers and the invention of Europeans
By Alessandro Barbero

Professor of Medieval History Alessandro Barbero examines a defining moment in European history, the Battle of Poitiers in 732 AC when Charles Martel defeated the "wali" of al-Andalus.

Mike Leigh: My Turner, Cinematic Painter
By Alessandra Quattrocchi

In "Mr Turner" Mike Leigh draws the impassioned portrait of the last 25 years in the life of William Turner, English master of painting (1775-1851).

Of American Warplanes and Dutch Toy Cars
By Rebecca Giersiefen

An account of a visit to the southern Turkish town of Suruç, where refugees from Kobanê are being put up in In Suruç's mosques, sport halls, granaries and hastily created tent camps.

Brussels has fallen
By José Ignacio Torreblanca

José Ignacio Torreblanca, head of the Reinvention of Europe programme at European Council on Foreign Relations questions whether or not the existence of the European Union can be guaranteed given that half the continent remains entangled in semantic games over whether they are signing up to a programme or an interim agreement – and the other half question whether the project makes any sense at all.

Report thy neighbour: policing Sisi’s Egypt
By Maha Abdelrahman

A regime bereft of legitimacy, save for its promise to guarantee national security, turns citizens into active players in a new culture of surveillance and reporting.

Dateline Damascus: fighting on all fronts
By Robert Dulmers - Teun Voeten

For 12 days, two Dutch journalists travelled all over Assad’s Syria. They spoke with high-ranking officials in government and generals at the front lines. A unique look behind the scenes.

Antiquity
By Jacques Le Goff

Even if other civilizations have singled out an original or ancient era in the periodization of their history, very few have granted such immense importance to its constitution, existence, and nature as Europe has attributed to its own Antiquity. Designated as the ancient Greek world, followed by the Roman world and then the Roman Empire, Antiquity was simultaneously the embryo and the basis for what we know now as Europe.

Libya’s downward spiral
By Alison Pargeter

Libya after the Qadhafi regime is witnessing a complex array of struggles in which ambitions for power, claims to legitimacy, the taint of the past, and ownership of the 2011 revolution are among the key dividing lines.

The White Temple of Chiang Rai
By Irene Dogmatic

The artist Chalermchai Kositpipat has dedicated himself to creating an offering to Lord Buddha, in the Thai City of Chiang Rai. "My impression upon seeing it was that it looks like a Buddhist Temple designed by Salvador Dali with the help of Rob Zombie and perhaps Walt Disney as well."

 
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