Nelson Mandela’s Favorite Shakespeare Passage

Located off the coast of Capetown, South Africa, Robben Island has been used to hold anti-apartheid insurgents and outcasts since the end of the 1800s. Revolutionaries, lepers, and political prisoners have all called Robben Island home. Most notably, Nelson Mandela spent 18 of his 27 years in prison as an inmate at Robben Island. While … Continue reading

The Fitzroy Aboriginal Heritage Trail

Fitzroy is a dynamic little neighborhood just north of Melbourne’s city center. The narrow streets and pedestrian laneways buzz with shops and cafes that show off its rich immigrant history. As one of the city’s most up-and-coming areas, Fitzroy is an expensive place to live. Ironically it’s also a cultural hub for the state of … Continue reading

“I’m Sorry” Is the First Step

(FYI: If you haven’t already, read the post on Australia’s Stolen Generations for more background to this story). It was 2008, and thousands of Aboriginal Australians gathered in the Australian capital city of Canberra. Across the country, many more thousands of people gathered in plazas and remote towns, where screens had been set up to … Continue reading

The Stolen Generations

How do you say “sorry” for stealing a generation of children from their parents? Well, if you’re Australian, you just say “sorry.” Wednesday the 13th marks the 5th anniversary of the “Stolen Generations Apology.” The newly-installed Prime Minister of Australia, in consultation with aboriginal leaders, gave the speech after many requests for a formal government … Continue reading

Walking the Land of Our Fathers

I’m in East Tennessee right now, writing from my hotel, where the rooms overlook the Smokies and everyone calls me “dearie.” Every time I come here, I feel closer to my father than before. He was born here and comes from a large, historic Kingsport family that had deep ties to the land and the … Continue reading

Sticking with Love

I am enjoying the fruits of other people’s labor. 15 years ago my parents collaborated with a woman named Mia Scarlat to start an organization for children in Bucharest who needed a safe place to go. Mia had the expertise, my family had the concerned American donors, and with a very small budget the group … Continue reading

Good Eats, Movie Review, & My Sad Hoodie Story

This week I’m trying something different: a non-injury-induced video blog. (If you get this by email or RSS, you may have to click through to the site to see it). Feedback appreciated! *One clarification: While Boat People SOS is founded by Nguyen Dinh Thang, who is working on the Aramark case in Jordan, I think … Continue reading

Victoria’s Secret and the Fairness of Fair Trade

If there’s anything in this world that grosses me out, it’s slavery and the word “panties.” Maybe that’s why I’ve avoided discussing the recent news that a Fairtrade-certified cotton distributor allegedly sold products tainted with forced child labor to the lingerie retailer Victoria’s Secret. (Oh yeah, I also hate the word “tainted.”) No one has … Continue reading

Happier Holidays Part 3: The Jingle Mingle

(This is the third post in a series on enriching your holiday festivities with acts of generosity.) Friends from my time living in New York City and Ithaca will recognize the title of this post. Back when I was at NYU, some good friends threw an annual party called the Jingle Mingle. They filled up … Continue reading

Happier Holidays Part 1: Throw a Charity Ball

(This is the first post in a series on enriching your holiday festivities with acts of generosity.) This weekend abolitionists will don gowns and tuxes for the Capital City Ball in DC. Now in its fifth year, this gala sprang up when a group of friends decided to turn their holiday party into a fundraiser … Continue reading

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