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New Media We Recommend

April 13, 2012

Below is a list of new materials that we have read/watched in recent weeks. The comments are not a “review” of the material, instead sort of an endorsement of ideas and investigations that can provide solid analysis and even inspiration in the struggle for change. All these items are available at The Bloom Collective, so check them out and stimulate your mind.

The Paris Commune: A Revolutionary Democracy, by Donny Gluckstein – For anyone looking for a book with solid analysis of the 1871 Paris Commune, Donny Gluckstein’s book does the job. Gluckstein not only provides readers with an excellent overview of the Paris Commune, he uses lots of archival material to demonstrate how much was achieved by the Commune in just 2 short months. Gluckstein also provides healthy criticism, but does not demonstrate an overt ideological bias. An important book about an important moment in revolutionary history.

The Real Romney, by Michael Kranish & Scott Helman – It is an election year and while we don’t support candidates or real believe there is much value in participating in the electoral process, there is value in reading more substantive analysis of the major candidates. This book by two Boston Globe writers sheds light on the person who now seems like the eventual GOP candidate for President in the November elections. The Real Romney is a well written investigation into the history of politician Mitt Romney. In addition to an investigation into Romney’s background, the co-authors do an excellent job of looking at Romney’s record as Governor, the role his Mormon faith plays into his politics and the tremendous monetary wealth this Presidential candidate possesses. This book is an useful resource if you don’t have any faith that the news pundits will actually provide substantive background coverage of candidate Romney.

The Unspoken Alliance: Israel’s Secret Relationship with Apartheid South Africa, by Sasha Polakow-Suransky – For several years Palestinians and supporters of the BDS campaign against Israel have argued that Israel’s occupation of Palestine is a form of apartheid. Sasha Polakow-Suransky’s book is timely in that regard, since the book exposes the Israeli relationship to the Apartheid South African government. Based on a great deal of archival material, The Unspoken Alliance looks at the decades long relationship between Israel and South Africa. An integral part of that relationship was based on arms sales from Israel to South Africa, a relationship, which helped Israel become a major weapons manufacturing and exporting country. This historical relationship, according to the author, also damages Israel’s standing in the global civil rights community, since Israel supported the racially devastating apartheid system in South Africa. Well written and highly recommended.

The Battle of Chile (DVD) – On September 11, 1973, President Salvador Allende’s democratically-elected Chilean government was overthrown in a bloody coup by General Augusto Pinochet’s army. Patricio Guzmán and five colleagues had been filming the political developments in Chile throughout the nine months leading up to that day. The bombing of the Presidential Palace, during which Allende died, would now become the ending for Guzmán’s seminal documentary The Battle of Chile, an epic chronicle of that country’s open and peaceful socialist revolution, and of the violent counter-revolution against it. This is a powerful and important film for those wanting to truly understand US foreign policy, since the US played a major role in the coup that put in power one of the most brutal dictators in Latin American history.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Y.B. Ordinary permalink
    April 16, 2012 3:40 pm

    Hi, Jeff-
    Just wanted to recommend a book I’ve been enjoying very much: Michael Moore’s Here Comes Trouble. It’s not a “major countercultural manifesto” or anything like that, but it tells some simply amazing- true- short stories of one man’s attempt to make a difference, hold his government to high standards, make his voice heard. And along the way he meets and introduces his readers to some of history’s important people. He’s inspired me to maintain my activism, and made me wish I’d done more, sooner, bolder.
    Since Mike Moore established perhaps the first alternative newspaper in Michigan, I would think you’d be a big fan of his. But whether or no, Here Comes Trouble is just a flat-out hoot to read, funny as hell, and really inspirational for any activist. It deserves a space on your list of recommended media.

  2. April 16, 2012 3:51 pm

    thanks for the suggestion………….I have a stack of stuff to get through and since Moore’s book has received attention from lots of sources – independent and mainstream – I haven’t felt as compelled to review it…….but I would like to read it eventually.

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