The Witness, directed and produced by James Solomon, William Genovese, and Melissa Jacobson, with Trish Govoni as director of photography, is an evocative tribute to Kitty Genovese, one of America’s most infamous and enduring crime victims. It is an intense, surprising and at times disturbing account of her brother Bill’s eleven-year search to learn the truth about the cold night in 1964 when 28-year-old Kitty was fatally assaulted near her home in Kew Gardens, Queens. It also is a poignant portrait of a man on a mission to make peace with a horrible family trauma that became an international symbol of apathy.
Bill is a thoughtful and soft-spoken man in his late 60s who conducts his search from his wheelchair, an indirect result of his response to a cultural call to action that his sister’s death immediately generated. After joining the Marines a few years later, he lost his legs in an explosion while leading his troops on a dangerous mission in Vietnam. “But I had people who helped me,” he says in the film. “I survived.” Continue reading “Witnessing “The Witness” – A Film Review by Marcia Gallo”
An Assessment Panel assessing the response of the World Health Organization (WHO) to the Ebola crisis concluded, in no uncertain terms, that, “The Ebola crisis . . . exposed organizational failings in the functioning of the WHO,” and called for important organizational reforms. While insightful, the analysis looks at the current situation with little attention to the historical context leading to existing deficiencies. Without understanding the sources of the current problems, it might be hard to fix them.
The WHO’s organizational difficulties today are not inherent or necessary aspects of this or any other international organization. Indeed, during most of its existence, the WHO was one of the more respected UN agencies. Instead, the WHO was thwarted by policy changes implemented over the past twenty years, which have undermined its operational capabilities and neglected poor countries’ health care infrastructure. The consequences of those changes today—lack of international alertness and a dire situation of health clinics in many countries—is why Ebola has turned into an international emergency, which could and should have been prevented. Continue reading “Nitsan Chorev Reflects on the “Report of the Ebola Interim Assessment Panel””
Joshua Rovner, author of Fixing the Facts: National Security and the Politics of Intelligence, has just published with coauthor Austin Long a Cato Institute Foreign Policy Briefing on strategy in Afghanistan and Pakistan: Dominoes on the Durand Line?
You can also visit Rovner’s Facebook page for his book here.
William Nickell, the author of The Death of Tolstoy: Russia on the Eve, Astapovo Station, 1910, is quoted in this January 3, 2011, New York Times article: For Tolstoy and Russia, Still No Happy Ending
Visit William Nickell’s website about his book here: The Death of Tolstoy
Amitav Acharya, author of Whose Ideas Matter?: Agency and Power in Asian Regionalism has two blogs you might enjoy, the first with a public affairs focus and the second with an academic focus:
On his own blog, Alex Wright makes an intriguing offer to sign copies of the new Cornell University Press paperback edition of Glut: Mastering Information through the Ages.
Motherhood, the Elephant in the Laboratory, edited by Emily Monosson, is reviewed by Londa Schiebinger in American Scientist. Here’s an excerpt:
Motherhood, the Elephant in the Laboratory makes evident the institutional structures that block parents’ careers, but, more important, it reveals the myriad ways in which male partners of mothers don’t shoulder their fair share of the physical and psychological labor associated with child care. What’s going on with these men? Some of them probably think that because they are more established in their careers or make more money than their partners, they are justified in leaving domestic drudgery to the women who were once their intellectual companions.
Read the whole thing here: Changing Assumptions
Emily Monosson, the editor of Motherhood, the Elephant in the Laboratory, has established a blog in support of the book—and of the parent/scientists to whom the book gives a voice! Pay her a visit at sciencemoms.wordpress.com.
Karen Nakamura, the author of Deaf in Japan: Signing and the Politics of Identity, has a blog at her lovely and interesting Photoethnography.com site.