Music Break No.102 — Winter In America edition

“… The stakes are very high: literally, survival of organized human society in any decent form,” Noam Chomsky tells Brooklyn Rail, as the former British colony of the United States of America, inaugurates its 45th president. So, this weekend’s Music Break goes out to our American family, who are set to face four years of struggle against a new set of rulers, led by “a mendacious and cathartic white president.” The political decisions made in the nation with the largest military, some of the biggest corporations and the loudest media companies in the world, affect all of us.

But let’s not be too quick to panic. If American citizens are firm in their resistance, the regime will be checked by a balance of powers, precedent (we’d recommend some political history, e.g. Corey Robin and Stephen Skowronek) and law-making and enforcement regime that is spread between 50 semi-autonomous states (though the power these states enjoy, could see some of them–those governed by hard-right Republican Party politicians–introduce retrogressive laws around trade union organizing,  the minimum wage, abortion or gender rights).

For starters, you can play these sounds to drown out the noise of Donald Trump’s inauguration speech today.

Music Break No. 102 – Winter in America edition

Further Reading

Resonant music

The film “Africa Mia” (2019), directed by Richard Minier and Edouard Salier, explores the musical connections between Cuba and Mali.

Wyuyata’s story

While Sierra Leone has come very far in its fight against sexual violence the question of safeguarding victims especially children needs urgent attention.

The politics of elegance

German historian Daniel Tödt wrote a history of the Congolese évolués. In this interview, he talks about the historiographical interventions of his book and the role of Patrice Lumumba in the history of évolués.

Bring Patrice Lumumba home

The return of Patrice Lumumba’s remains must not be an occasion for Belgium to congratulate itself, but for a full accounting of the colonial violence that led to the assassination and coverup.

Back from Safari

If you hadn’t noticed, we were on our annual break from just before Christmas 2021 until now. We are back, including with some inspiration.