In the World
Iyad: An Epic of Modern Mali

Iyad: An Epic of Modern Mali

Childhood and Exile: Rebel Politics and the Politics of Hunger. This is the second in a series comparing the epic lives of Sundiata, medieval Malian ruler, and Iyad ag-Ghali, a power player and leader in Malian rebel movements for nearly forty years.
Iyad: An Epic of Modern Mali

Iyad: An Epic of Modern Mali

By Joe McKnight One name kept repeating itself: Iyad ag-Ghali, leader of Ansar Dine. It seems to me his story, and his political role, may be one that ends up profoundly altering Mali's future.

Decibels and Debate: Unifying Egypt’s Call to Prayer

by Maurice Chammah The call to prayer was not just a reminder of religious extremism. For these elite Egyptians, it was religious extremism.

All Together? The Legacy of Egypt’s Jews

by Maurice Chammah At first I did a double take, seeing the word ‘Weinstein’ in simple block letters one story above street level in downtown Cairo.

The Bullet That Doesn’t Hit You

By Maurice Chammah Nasser had...wanted the state to protect journalists from the market, but could that be done without making them slaves of the state?

Jewish Enough? The Saturday Oil-Pressers

by Janaki Challa The largest Jewish community in India...are descendents of persecuted Jews from Galilee who were left stranded on Indian shores by a shipwreck around the 2nd century BCE.

Of Shrines and Syncretists

by Alex Thurston Teju Cole analyzes the destruction of the shrines by analogy: Mali is premodern Europe; Mali is Afghanistan under the Taliban...Then comes the interesting analogy: Timbuktu is Mecca at the time of its conquest by the forces of the Prophet...

The First Draft of History: Wire Agency Reporting in Egypt

by Maurice Chammah The editors weren’t pleased. It was too complex...It would be easier, they decided, to frame the story as one of religious hatred.

In the Shadows of Syria: Defusing Sectarian Tensions in Lebanon

by Irina Papkova For two weeks, Lebanon lived on the knife edge of a sectarian civil war. And here the truly interesting part of this story begins to emerge.

Calvin’s Geneva? The New International Discourse of Blasphemy

By Austin Dacey The Ad Hoc Committee on the Elaboration of Complementary Standards was meeting to address “gaps” in an international human rights treaty on racism and racial discrimination.
Schooling Muslims in Northern Nigeria: Politics, Policies and Conclusions

Schooling Muslims in Northern Nigeria: Politics, Policies and Conclusions

by Alex Thurston Government-run Islamic schools, then, are to be a source of “counter-radicalization” as well as a means of moving almajirai into more “productive” schools. But the policy is unlikely to succeed.
The Dalai Lama is Home

The Dalai Lama is Home

By Becky Rynor I was looking for the chink in that unfailingly optimistic armor, a moment of emotion from the man who was forced by invading Chinese forces to flee his homeland of Tibet in 1959.