Issue 16

Editorial

Thanks to Greta. She was able to say the words that were embedded in our mind like sea foam. We live in this world. We are afraid of the Amazon fire. All of us who are concerned about the destruction of the Sundarbans, the world’s largest mangrove forest, are united with petitions and petitions. We fear the displacement, destruction, and suffering that will occur with melting ice caps, stronger storms, and rising waters. We have only one world. How dare you!  How strongly a small sentence shakes with our emotions. Shame on politicians and leaders for not even trying to lead us to a sustainable future!  In a race toward destruction in the name of improvement, they behave like unmanaged horses. We dream of a balanced world. We want political leadership to take responsibility. We expect genuine commitments to protect the environment, human rights, freedom of speech, justice, social and economic equality, and democratic culture.

 

This October, it has been four years since Shuddhashar’s activities in Bangladesh were abruptly ended. How much progress for freedom of expression has been made during these four years? We are very disappointed with the answer. But, we are hopeful that the young people of Bangladesh will not let the blood of Dipon, Avijit, Ananta, and countless others who have written for truth and justice go to waste.

Climate Catastrophe and Secular Spiritual Possibilities

“The Exaggerated Possibility of the End of the World”.  That is my translation of the title of an article in the French newspaper, Le Monde diplomatique.  (The Norwegian edition of August 2019).  The article’s author tells of “collapsology”, the different ways the looming collapse of the environment is dealt with in France.  Several books dealing …

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Reflections on the International Climate Strike

Scientists have understood climate change as a reality for over a century.  Svante Arrhenius was the first to actually calculate the potential effect of rising carbon dioxide concentrations on global temperature in the late 1890s, but was not the first to recognize the potential impact of the combustion of fossil fuels on global climate.  Starting in …

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Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew, Greta Thunberg, and Patriarchy Today

Shakespeare’s plays offer themselves to be interpreted in infinite ways no matter the context. Starting from discourse and symbolism to subtext and political references, one can find multiple ways to interpret his works. “The Taming of the Shrew” is one of Shakespeare’s remarkably popular comedies. The play has been adapted numerous times for stage, screen, …

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Wahhabism in Bangladesh?

In April 2017, the National Economic Council of Bangladesh approved a Tk-9,062 crore project to build 560 model-mosques in Bangladesh. Initially, the government of Bangladesh asked for Saudi Arabia’s financial assistance, which, according to the latest news never came. That did not prevent Bengali local Muslim communities, which represent 90% of the Muslim population of the …

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Islam in the West: Between Culturalist and Reformist Expediencies

A dichotomous world In the Western world, the discourse on Islam has been dramatically shaped by contentious debates on the role of the state. The proliferation of radical ideas among the European-Muslim millennials and recent terrorist attacks across Europe has catapulted fringe right-wing views into the mainstream psyche. There is a rising trend in the …

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Bangladesh is hardening its policies on the Rohingya refugees to fend off another refugee crisis from the North

While the issue of refugees has been a rather contentious one in Europe for the last few years, receiving continuous and widespread media coverage, far away in Bangladesh two refugee situations have become increasingly a source of tension in the past month or so. One of them is the already overblown Rohingya refugee crisis, which …

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Gender-Based Violence Among Rohingya Refugees

A Rohingya mother with her two-month-old daughter in their tent. Photo: Farzana Hossen/Oxfam.Link:www.oxfamamerica.org/static/media/files/bp-one-year-on-rohingya-refugee-women-girls-110918-en.pdf   Violence is an underlying feature among all societies.[1] To that end, whether it is in the form of cultural norms or legislation, the way society handles and resolves cases of violence is important because it reflects the values a society upholds. …

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Islamist threat challenges LGBT, Gay and Lesbian in Bangladesh

Tourist’s most popular guidebook Lonely Planet, advises gay travellers to be discreet in Bangladesh, and warns that homosexuality is illegal in Bangladesh, and homosexual acts are punishable under Bangladesh law with deportation, fines and/or prison. In December 2008, Bangladesh was one of 59 countries that signed a statement opposing lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) …

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Photo by Archillumi [CC BY-SA 4.0]

Architect Zaha Hadid – A brilliant eye that chose to look the other way

Born in Iraq, based in the UK, Dame Zaha Hadid (1950-2016) was one of the world’s most influential architects. She was the first woman to win The Royal Institute of British Architects annual gold medal in her own right. She led a pioneering studio whose buildings include the Guangzhou opera house, the London aquatics centre, …

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