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Written by johncollins on Mar 11, 2016

1008 Back in January I reported on the case of Raúl Capín, an independent Spanish photojournalist who is facing potential jail time after photographing police activity at a major public demonstration in February 2013. The case, which has received little attention outside of Spain (aside from an interview I did with Jeffrey McAndrew for his US-based “News and Notes” podcast), has major implications for the present and future of Spanish democracy at a time when the country continues to witness the impact of the infamous Ley Mordaza (Gag Law) that went into effect in 2015...

Written by jedegu13 on Mar 3, 2016

1013 My name is Julianne DeGuardi and I’m a junior at St Lawrence University where I am majoring in Global Studies and Spanish. This semester while I am studying abroad in Madrid I will be contributing to the “Weaving the Streets & People’s History Archive” (WSPHA) project. I am planning to travel to San Sebastian in País Vasco (Basque Country) and Barcelona in Cataluña in order to analyze how regional identity and nationalist sentiments are expressed through the use of public space in each of these cities. 

(Image at left by Phillip Capper from Wellington, New Zealand (Flickr) [CC BY...

Written by kkcrea95 on Feb 29, 2016

This week I had the opportunity to interview one of the professors involved in our study abroad program here in Spain, Professor Dr. Aida Bueno Sarduy. Dr. Sarduy is our professor of Migrations and Diversity here in Madrid and is originally from Cuba. Having been exiled by the Cuban government in 1992 Dr. Sarduy was given refuge here in Madrid to live and pursue her studies in anthropology. Over the past 24 years she has studied immigrant populations here in Madrid and as well in Brazil.

The being said she is a very busy person and I was only able to get 20 minutes of her time outside of class in order to have a conversation about her opinion of African immigrants and how they are treated here in Spain. Here are the questions I used to guide this conversation:

What year did you immigrate to Spain and why?

Are you a citizen of Spain if so, what was...

Written by johncollins on Feb 22, 2016

943 As Europe continues to confront a series of interlocking crises - austerity cuts, undemocratic power structures, migration pressures, rising xenophobia and far-right movements, threats to free speech, climate change, just to name a few - the Plan B movement has emerged as one focus of pan-European efforts to chart a new future grounded in the struggle for social justice. This past weekend Plan B brought its progressive message of grassroots resistance to Madrid for the "Against Austerity - For a Democratic Europe" summit. While I wasn't able to attend as much of the...

Written by lgpend13 on Feb 15, 2016

941 "El Johnny": A Squatter Community in MadridThink about the power of any image. All over the world we visit museums to see art through which we can tell the story of our history. We use photographs daily to capture special moments and these days, we later post them to social media to share them with the world. Recently, I’ve noticed that images on signs that fill our streets are just as powerful and this is the idea I wish to expand on as we dive deeper into the story of “El Johnny”.

“El...

Written by johncollins on Feb 9, 2016

Acting in the tradition of culture jamming groups such as the Yes Men, who pulled off a famous 2008 fake edition of the New York Times, two American Jewish groups (Jewish Voice for Peace and Jews Say No!) recently launched a website that brilliantly...

Written by johncollins on Feb 8, 2016

936 I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Khaldoun Samman (left), Professor of Sociology at Macalester College, for a follow-up to our 2010 conversation on rising Islamophobia. In our latest discussion, Samman offers his analysis of how the complex interactions of racist, patriarchal, and Islamophobic discourses continue to evolve in relation to ongoing stories such as the migration/refugee crisis in Europe and the...

Written by kkcrea95 on Jan 29, 2016

935

One of the main goals of the Weaving the Streets Blog and the People’s History Archive is to document how people use the streets to express themselves. How common people create and advertise grassroots movements through art, peaceful occupation, organizing protests, etc. that aren’t necessarily documented by the mainstream media. Though the question I wanted to answer with this post, is how do people express themselves when they are struggling, hungry, cold and scared?

Be it poverty, disparity, or as my generation eloquently puts it...

Written by johncollins on Jan 21, 2016

919 Spain is routinely referred to as a democratic country, and it does possess many of the attributes typically associated with democracy. At the same time, as I have seen during the past several months of living in Madrid, the country is also home to some profoundly anti-democratic tendencies. For many critics, these tendencies represent not an erosion of a previously democratic reality but rather a confirmation that “La Transición” (Spain’s post-1975 transition from dictatorship to democratic rule) remains fundamentally unfinished. Nowhere is this clearer that in the ongoing attempts by the state to restrict the ability of ordinary citizens to exercise freely their right to protest and to share information about what is happening in their society. In this “Weaving the Streets” post I will share what I observed and learned at a recent protest in support of Raúl Capín, an independent...

Written by DrP on Jan 18, 2016

917 I am thankful for whatever lessons I can learn from the past to help me confront the problems of the present. We’re at a new low point in race relations, and now (as many times before) there are grumblings of racial separation. What, if anything, can Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s writing tell us that might restore our faith in integration as a viable goal for the U.S.? 

I teach African American history at a college in New York where the African American population is relatively large. As a black man myself, I’m truly grateful for this: More than a decade ago when I began my climb up the ivory tower I had hoped that I’d be able to reach a diverse student population, that I’d have the chance to introduce young men and women with personal experiences much like my own to the wonders of history. That dream has come true. 

But...