• Books: Bury the Chains by Adam Hochschild, Endless War: Hidden Functions of the "war on terror" by David Keen, Capital Vol. 1, Tin Drum by Günter Grass, What is Islam? by Shahab Ahmed, Desiring Arabs by Joseph Massad, Spies, Soldiers and Statesmen by Hazem Kandil, La Condition Humaine by André Malraux, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, Imagined Community by Benedict Anderson, Culture and Imperialism by Edward Said, The Wretched of the Earth by Frantz Fanon, The Richness of Life by Stephen Jay Gould, Children of the Alley by Naguib Mahfouz, The Mass Psychology of Fascism by Wilhelm Reich, Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, 1984 by George Orwell, Noli me Tangere by José Rizal, Age of Extremes by Eric Hobsbawm, ذهنية التحريم لصادق جلال العظم, Karl Marx by Francis Wheen, وليمة لأعشاب البحر لحيدر حيدر, Candide by Voltaire, النزعات المادية في الفلسفة العربية الإسلامية لحسين مروة, Listen Little Man by Wilhelm Reich ..
  • Films: Alexanderplatz by Rainer Fassbinder, Clockwork Orange, Apocalypse Now, The Battle of Algiers, films by P. P. Passolini, Persepolis, Midnight Express, 1984, Papillion, Gangs of New York, Sophie Scholl, Life of Brian, Ivan the Terrble, Battleship Potemkine ...

Friday, May 12, 2017

"A funny thing happened on the tube. Two young, fairly affluent looking racists on the Victoria Line started hassling three teenage hijabis, calling them "smelly foreigners". It didn't seem, from what I heard, to be a focused anti-Muslim thing. It was about getting a sadistic kick out of baiting them, and enjoying their outraged responses.
A woman was trying to talk the girls down -- because, though plainly not intimidated, they were obviously distressed -- saying "ignore them", and telling the young men to "grow up". When they resumed their 'banter' about having to share a tube with a bunch of "foreigners", an elderly black man sitting near them said, "who the fuck are you calling a foreigner?" Which was a good point: their actions were bewilderingly self-endangering, and they didn't look the least bit up to defending themselves. This guy was ready to get up and lamp them. I blurted out something like, "just get off the train you fucking pricks". I wish it had been a more clearly political response than this but, when my knee jerks, it swears loudly. The woman laughed and said "everyone point at the racists", and there was a ripple of a few people jeering them and telling them to "get off". 
The backlash unsettled them. They stood there trying to look smug and defiant. I suspect there was a minority in quiet sympathy with the idiots. There was a lot of embarrassment and looking at feet -- and there is nothing the English fear more than embarrassment. There were also, initially, some irritated glances at the girls raising their voices. But the racists looked uneasy, isolated, nervous. They were lucky someone didn't deck them. The teenagers they'd tried to bait looked pissed off, rattled, but also far more confident than their harassers. Once the guys had left, an older man approached the teenagers, apologised to them and complimented them on how they'd handled themselves.
I'm not sure what conclusion to draw from this. In other circumstances, I could imagine that going far more horribly than it in fact did."
— Richard Seymour, London 11 May 2017
I don't the way he called the girls, though: "three teenage hijabis". Why not three teenage Muslims wearing hijabs?

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