Saturday, September 19, 2009


First of all, a happy new year to all of my readers for whom today is new year's day, especially Noga, TNC, Matt, Snoop, the Zsters, Daniel and Keith. This year, I plan, among other things, to blog less but blog better. Added Saturday night: And do I have any Muslim readers? I'd like to think I do. If so, Eid Mubarak! Especially to Selma in Tehran, who it is good to see back on-line after a worrying hiatus.

Towards a cosmopolitan politics
Francis Sedgemore and Chris Dillow on immigrants. Marko Milanovic on the wikipedia approach to reality and competing narratives on Gaza and Bosnia (via the Debate Link).

The shit still piles up
CounterPunch's promotion of the Swedish blood libel and its medieval antecedants (plus more libels spotted by David S). Luis Roniger: Antisemitism, Real or Imagined? Chávez, Iran, Israel, And the Jews [pdf]. Osama bin Laden's book recommendations: Walt and Mearsheimer.

Isn't subversion enough?
Uncarved on Hackney squatters and gentrifiers. Francis on the Climate Camp at Blackheath as a tragedy of the commons. Datacide says: You cannot blow up social relations! Michael Berube asks What's wrong with cultural studies (via Ignoblus, who tells you why you should read it if you have any doubts). Some views on the TUC and others boycotting Israel: Mod, Dave S, Mira, Ben C, and Reb Sean of the AWL. Added: and Champagne Charlie.

Heroes of the week
Kevin Elliott and Barry Delaney. [H/t Jogo] Added: and the people of Iran.

Bob's beats
Via uncarved, I just found the wonderful Musik Line. Listen to this wonderful mix of 1970s Moroccan music, including folk, blues, Sufi and fusion. Read these notes on Gnawa and the black diaspora in Morocco. Meanwhile, apparently the Midlands have been having an Indian summer. (South London alternates between last gasp of summer and full-blown Autumn.) Here's Coleman Hawkins in honour of that pleasure.

To conclude, here is some Punjabi Sufi music from Pakistan. This is Sain Zahoor, singing "Allah Hoo", a Sufi Muslim devotional poem. That odd stringed instrument he is playing is an ektara, which is a traditional instrument of wandering troubadours in the Indian subcontinent, and, I think, most strongly associated with the Bauls, to whom I was first introduced by my Yiddish teacher.


Dave Semple said...

Happy new year Bob! Cheers for the link, as always.

The Contentious Centrist said...

Thanks, Bob'le, and Shana Tova to you and yours, too.

Matt said...

And happy new year to all!

As a present, if I don't get around to blogging this, check out Hava Nagila (and other music) here.

And Shemspeed sent me a link for the latest Ephryme track.

bob said...

I love the Iranian funk Matt, especially that Have Nagila! Thanks.


Ben Cohen said...

Great stuff here Bob - shana tovah.

schalomlibertad said...

L´Shanah Tova Bob and to all others celebrating 5077!

TNC said...

Happy New Year, Bob!

I'm trying to do the same thing with my blog (fewer posts but longer and more in depth) but so far I have not managed to do it. Too busy with the newborn, which is a good thing...

Martin Meenagh said...

Happy new year Bob! I loved that Sufi music, btw

bob said...

Thanks all!

SnoopyTheGoon said...

A belated thank you, Bob. And same to you and all you hold dear and near.