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Just prior to the recent, momentous March for Womens Lives in Washington, DC, the City Council issued an alarming report documenting the impact the attack on abortion rights is having here in New York City.
The smell of wet garbage and puke permeates the 3:30 a.m. West Village air. Crossing the street to avoid a tipsy homeless man, I pass by some students jamming on a discarded piano, trying to conjure up the artistic frivolity and earnestness that has long since disappeared from this pocket of Manhattan.
For the past 20 years, author Pankaj Mishra has been exposing how Indias two main political parties have marginalized ethnic and religious minorities and failed to alleviate poverty in an era of rapid economic growth.
Hyders fiction reveals that the barriers separating seemingly distinct groupsChristians, Muslims, and Hindus; Europeans and Asiansare in fact hazy.
Erudite and engaged, Clare Short has been a member of the UK Parliament since 1983. She has been one of the most vociferous critics of both the Iraq War and the Blair governments ongoing support for it.
More incisive than Dan Rather, more charming than Peter Jennings, Mexican-born Jorge Ramos is Spanish-language televisions celebrity talking head. An anchor at Univision, the fifth most-watched television network in the United States, Ramos is also a columnist and the author of several books, including The Latino Wave: How Hispanics Will Choose the Next President
Indias pursuit of superpowerdom has been cheered on by the US media as well as the countrys own mainstream press, but writer Pankaj Mishras powerful portraits of the subcontinent pierce through this chauvinistic fog.
The homes of middle class and wealthy Indians are staffed by teams of servants who cater to their employers every need. Born in poor states like Bihar or countries like Nepal and Bangladesh, these live-in drivers, cooks and cleaners often work twelve-hour days and seven-day weeks.
Poppy is responsible for an astounding 30-50% of Afghanistans GDP, a fact rarely discussed in media coverage of the war there. Last autumn, however, allegations about Ahmed Wali Karzai, the Afghan presidents brother, threw the war-ravaged Central Asian nations drug problem into the limelight.
After first reading Hanif Kureishis new novel The Body, I thought it to be an anomaly in a career marked by iconoclastic writing. After all, the book is a work of science fiction and at times it reads like a thriller.
Meera Nairs debut collection Video (Random House 2003) is set in modern-day India, Bangladesh and the United States. In these 10 stories, Nairs characters are affected by Hindu-Muslim communal violence, politics, social reform, and above all, different forms of longing. In the collections title story,
Jhumpa Lahiri, The Namesake (Houghton Mifflin 2003). A crowd buzzed with anticipation at the Barnes and Noble in Union Square on an evening in mid-September. Jhumpa Lahiri was going to open her book tour here, promoting her first novel, The Namesake. Among the typical mix of Indophiles, South Asian Americans and book nerds, there were lawyers, teachers and students of all ages.
In Joshua Henkins latest novel, The World Without You (Pantheon, 2012) journalist Leo Frankel has been killed while covering the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq. One year after his death, when Leos family gathers to commemorate his passing, his mother announces she is separating from his father.
In Las Cucarachas, author Yongsoo Park enters the consciousness of Peter Kim, an urban pre-teenager whose life is defined by stickball, racial boundaries and fist fights. The son of Korean parents, Peter is an ordinary twelve-year-old in 1980s Elmhurst who is crass and excessively hormonal, and who has an inevitable disdain for authority.
Poet Patrick Phillipss latest book, Elegy for a Broken Machine: poems, is a graceful meditation on grief and memory. The poems in this volume offer unflinching perspectives on illness and aging, and yet they are permeated by a subtle optimism, wisdom, and wit.
The world was introduced to Hanif Kureishi in 1985 when the film My Beautiful Laundrette debuted. The screenplay he wrote for it shed fresh light on class, race and sexuality in Thatchers London and was nominated for an Oscar.
The mainstream media has its cyclopic eye on South Asia, broadcasting images of nerdy brown people stealing office jobs or the destitute and emaciated awaiting alms.
Brooklyn-based Suketu Mehta, a graduate of the Iowa Writers Workshop, spent the late 1990s becoming intimate with the gangsters and zealots responsible for the violence, as well as the slum dwellers, cops, bar girls, and movie stars who make Indias thriving commercial capital function.
Michael Lally, author of over twenty books of poetry, has experienced much of what twentieth-century North America has had to offerdiscrimination, Hollywood, sexual revolution and war.
Literary fiction by young women is dominated by Zadies and Jhumpas, voices lauded as fresh because of their chic hybridity. In a twist of our times, the writing of Heather McGowan, a white Ivy Leaguer, might be more innovative and iconoclastic than many contemporary writers who allegedly transgress literary convention.
Pankaj Mishra and his latest work, An End to Suffering: The Buddha in the World (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004)
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar stars as the protagonist and narrator of Imad Rahmans debut collection of stories I Dream of Microwaves. Hes a struggling method actor who drinks bourbon like water and has a predilection for the word dude. When hes not portraying ethnic criminals on Americas Most Wanted or struggling for the lead in a musical version of Apocalypse Now for dinner theater, he works in an assortment of jobs that call into question his dignity, but never his dedication or integrity as an actor.
Its a Wednesday night at Manhattans smoky Kush bar, and off in a corner spinning music is resident DJ Karsh Kale.
In Pedro Almodóvars 1983 film Dark Habits, a nightclub singer named Yolanda decides to kick her dope habit in a convent. But the nuns in charge of her rehabilitation are anything but pious. One is a lesbian heroin addict, another trips on acid, and a third writes smutty novels.