Abbandonati

Abbandonati, by Luigi Nono (1853-1918) Homeless man in New York City – 2008. Photo source: JMSuarez. According to the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty, approx 3.5 million people are likely to experience homelessness in a given year. Advertisements

30%. Gone.

As of May, more than 5.5 million people had fled their homes as a result of the conflict in Syria. That’s nearly 30% of the country, or 1.5 million refugees outside of Syria and 4 million people displaced within the border. When I first read those numbers, I found myself imagining 1/3 of my building … Continue reading

Charter Cities Attempt to Reduce Poverty by Providing Options

The dominant trend in international development right now is to provide individuals with greater means to climb out of poverty on more or less their own terms. NYU development economist Paul Romer has pioneered what may be the latest, and perhaps craziest, idea in this trend.  What if we provide individuals with greater means to … Continue reading

How to Help Syrian Refugees

As their country enters the third year of a bitter civil war, roughly 4 million Syrians have fled their homes. At least 1 million have crossed into neighboring countries like Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, and Turkey. The rest are displaced within Syria, including a large contingency hiding out in Roman-era caves. And to make the situation … Continue reading

Terra Spiritus…with a darker shade of pale

Bea Maddock is one of Australia’s most influential contemporary artists. Her most recent works often consider place and memory, importance of the land, and the way Australia remembers and preserves multiple views of history. Nowhere are these themes more evident than in her piece “Terra Spiritus…with a darker shade of pale” at the National Gallery of … Continue reading

Mamalu (When I look at the world)

John Pule’s Mamalu (When I look at the world) is one of a few contemporary pieces at the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne that made me stop, look closer, and then think, “I have to blog this one.” Pule (born 1962) is from Niue, a South Pacific island country to the northeast of New … 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

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

We Need Cleaner Air and Cleaner Hearts

Last week NPR featured a series on poisoned places exposing the ways polluted air continues to harm residents all over the US. When I heard this report on All Things Considered, I recognized the place immediately: thick fog, benzene in the air, burning eyes and throats, obscure cancers. Perhaps this was LaBelle, PA – the … Continue reading

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