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MUSEUM OF PUBLIC PROTEST

· Louise Aston: Die wilde Rose · Charlotte Perkins Gilman: Boys will be boys · Our Bodies, Their Battlefield: What War Does to Women by Christina Lamb · Everyday Mojo Songs of Earth: New and Selected Poems, 2001-2021 by Yusef Komunyakaa · Banned Books Week: Defend free expression, support persecuted writers, and promote literary culture · Charlotte Perkins Gilman: “We as women” · Charlotte Perkins Gilman: Females · Support PEN Belarus · Joe Hill: The Girl Question (song) · Sontag: Her Life and Work by Benjamin Moser · Roger Robinson: A Portable Paradise (Poetry) · Joe Hill: Everybody’s Joining It (song)

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Louise Aston: Die wilde Rose

Die wilde Rose

Da droben auf einsamer Höhe
Die wilde Rose blüht,
Und wer sie von Ferne gesehen,
In heißer Sehnsucht erglüht.

Zu ihr über Felsen und Klüfte
Ein kühner Jäger klimmt.
Schon ist er in nächster Nähe –
Das Auge in Thränen ihm schwimmt.

Er will sie erfassen und pflücken.
Da strauchelt jäh sein Fuß;
Des Abgrunds finstere Tiefe
Empfängt ihn mit kaltem Kuß.

Da droben auf einsamer Höhe
Die wilde Rose blüht,
Und wer sie von Ferne gesehen.
In heißer Sehnsucht erglüht. –

Louise Aston
(1814-1871)
Die wilde Rose

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Charlotte Perkins Gilman: Boys will be boys

Boys will be boys

“Boys will be boys,” and boys have had their day;
Boy-mischief and boy-carelessness and noise
Extenuated all, allowed, excused and smoothed away,
Each duty missed, each damaging wild act,
By this meek statement of unquestioned fact–
Boys will be boys!

Now, “women will be women.” Mark the change;
Calm motherhood in place of boisterous youth;
No warfare now; to manage and arrange,
To nurture with wise care, is woman’s way,
In peace and fruitful industry her sway,
In love and truth.

Charlotte Perkins Gilman
(1860-1935)
Boys will be boys
Suffrage Songs and Verses

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Our Bodies, Their Battlefield: What War Does to Women by Christina Lamb

Our Bodies, Their Battlefield: What War Does to Women by Christina Lamb

From Christina Lamb, the coauthor of the bestselling I Am Malala and an award-winning journalist—an essential, groundbreaking examination of how women experience war.

In Our Bodies, Their Battlefields, longtime intrepid war correspondent Christina Lamb makes us witness to the lives of women in wartime. An award-winning war correspondent for twenty-five years (she’s never had a female editor) Lamb reports two wars—the “bang-bang” war and the story of how the people behind the lines live and survive. At the same time, since men usually act as the fighters, women are rarely interviewed about their experience of wartime, other than as grieving widows and mothers, though their experience is markedly different from that of the men involved in battle.

Lamb chronicles extraordinary tragedy and challenges in the lives of women in wartime. And none is more devastating than the increase of the use of rape as a weapon of war. Visiting warzones including the Congo, Rwanda, Nigeria, Bosnia, and Iraq, and spending time with the Rohingya fleeing Myanmar, she records the harrowing stories of survivors, from Yazidi girls kept as sex slaves by ISIS fighters and the beekeeper risking his life to rescue them; to the thousands of schoolgirls abducted across northern Nigeria by Boko Haram, to the Congolese gynecologist who stitches up more rape victims than anyone on earth. Told as a journey, and structured by country, Our Bodies, Their Battlefields gives these women voice.

We have made significant progress in international women’s rights, but across the world women are victimized by wartime atrocities that are rarely recorded, much less punished. The first ever prosecution for war rape was in 1997 and there have been remarkably few convictions since, as if rape doesn’t matter in the reckoning of war, only killing. Some courageous women in countries around the world are taking things in their own hands, hunting down the war criminals themselves, trying to trap them through Facebook.

In this profoundly important book, Christina Lamb shines a light on some of the darkest parts of the human experience—so that we might find a new way forward. Our Bodies, Their Battlefields is as inspiring and empowering is as it is urgent, a clarion call for necessary change.

Christina Lamb is one of Britain’s leading foreign correspondents and a bestselling author. She has reported from most of the world’s hotspots starting with Afghanistan after an unexpected wedding invitation led her to Karachi in 1987 when she was just 22. She moved to Peshawar to cover the mujaheddin fighting the Soviet Union and within two years she had been named Young Journalist of the Year. Since then she has won 15 major awards including five times being named Foreign Correspondent of the Year and Europe’s top war reporting prize, the Prix Bayeux. She was made an OBE by the Queen in 2013 and is an honorary fellow of University College, Oxford.

Our Bodies, Their Battlefield:
What War Does to Women
by Christina Lamb
Publisher: ‎William Collins
5 Mar. 2020
Language: ‎ English
Hardcover: ‎ 432 pages
ISBN-10: ‎ 0008300003
ISBN-13: ‎ 978-0008300005
£14.99

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Everyday Mojo Songs of Earth: New and Selected Poems, 2001-2021 by Yusef Komunyakaa

New and selected poets from the

great Pulitzer Prize–winning poet

 

Everyday Mojo Songs of Earth brings together selected poems from the past twenty years of Yusef Komunyakaa’s work, as well as new poems from the Pulitzer Prize winner.

Komunyakaa’s masterful, concise verse conjures arresting images of peace and war, the natural power of the earth and of love, his childhood in the American South and his service in Vietnam, the ugly violence of racism in America, and the meaning of power and morality.

The new poems in this collection add a new refrain to the jazz-inflected rhythms of one of our “most significant and individual voices” (David Wojahn, Poetry).

Komunyakaa writes of a young man fashioning a slingshot, workers who “honor the Earth by opening shine / inside the soil,” and the sounds of a saxophone filling a dim lounge in New Jersey. As April Bernard wrote in The New York Times Book Review, “He refuses to be trivial; and he even dares beauty.”

These songs run along dirt roads
& highways, crisscross lonely seas
& scale mountains, traverse skies
& underworlds of neon honkytonk,
Wherever blues dare to travel.

Yusef Komunyakaa (born James William Brown, April 29, 1941) is an American poet who teaches at New York University and is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers. Komunyakaa is a recipient of the 1994 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award, for Neon Vernacular and the 1994 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. He also received the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize. Komunyakaa received the 2007 Louisiana Writer Award for his enduring contribution to the poetry world. His subject matter ranges from the black experience through rural Southern life before the Civil Rights era and his experience as a soldier during the Vietnam War.

Everyday Mojo Songs of Earth:
New and Selected Poems, 2001-2021
by Yusef Komunyakaa
Publisher: ‎ Farrar, Straus and Giroux
(June 15, 2021)
Language: ‎ English
288 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0374600139
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0374600136
Hardcover $25.60
Paperback $18.00

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Banned Books Week: Defend free expression, support persecuted writers, and promote literary culture

BANNED BOOKS WEEK
September 26 – October 2 for the 2021
celebration of the right to read!

Across the United States, divisive book bans and censorious threats have taken hold in schools, academia, and the public square, particularly in regards to books that center racism, history, and diversity. This has raised questions: Who is allowed to be heard? Who decides? This year, as we celebrate Banned Books Week, PEN America uplifts the books, authors, teachers, and writers who insist on telling stories and examining history with truth, honesty, and complexity.

In an effort to unpack these current challenges, PEN America is hosting a series of virtual and in-person events. These events will offer a clear-eyed view of the current assaults on the freedom to express, the freedom to read, and the freedom to learn.

Join PEN America Today
Defend free expression, support persecuted writers, and promote literary culture.

Read more about what PEN America is doing to fight back against book bans during 2021 Banned Books Week.

→  https://pen.org/

BANNED BOOKS WEEK
September 26 – October 2 for the 2021
celebration of the right to read!

Banned Books Week is the annual celebration of the freedom to read. The event is sponsored by a coalition of organizations dedicated to free expression, including American Booksellers Association; American Library Association; American Society of Journalists and Authors; Association of University Presses; Authors Guild; Comic Book Legal Defense Fund; Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE); Freedom to Read Foundation; Index on Censorship; National Coalition Against Censorship; National Council of Teachers of English; PEN America; People For the American Way Foundation; and Project Censored. It is endorsed by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. Banned Books Week also receives generous support from DKT Liberty Project and Penguin Random House.

Read more about the 2021 Banned Books Week.

→   https://bannedbooksweek.org/

 

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Charlotte Perkins Gilman: “We as women”

 

“We as women”

There’s a cry in the air about us–
We hear it before, behind–
Of the way in which “We, as women,”
Are going to lift mankind!

With our white frocks starched and ruffled,
And our soft hair brushed and curled–
Hats off! for “We, as women,”
Are coming to save the world.

Fair sisters, listen one moment–
And perhaps you’ll pause for ten:
The business of women as women
Is only with men as men!

What we do, “We, as women,”
We have done all through our life;
The work that is ours as women
Is the work of mother and wife.

But to elevate public opinion,
And to lift up erring man,
Is the work of the Human Being;
Let us do it–if we can.

But wait, warm-hearted sisters–
Not quite so fast, so far.
Tell me how we are going to lift a thing
Any higher than we are!

We are going to “purify politics,”
And to “elevate the press.”
We enter the foul paths of the world
To sweeten and cleanse and bless.

To hear the high things we are going to do,
And the horrors of man we tell,
One would think, “We, as women,” were angels,
And our brothers were fiends of hell.

We, that were born of one mother,
And reared in the self-same place,
In the school and the church together,
We of one blood, one race!

Now then, all forward together!
But remember, every one,
That ’tis not by feminine innocence
The work of the world is done.

The world needs strength and courage,
And wisdom to help and feed–
When, “We, as women” bring these to man,
We shall lift the world indeed.

Charlotte Perkins Gilman
(1860-1935)
“We as women”
Suffrage Songs and Verses

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Charlotte Perkins Gilman: Females

Females

The female fox she is a fox;
The female whale a whale;
The female eagle holds her place
As representative of race
As truly as the male.

The mother hen doth scratch for her chicks,
And scratch for herself beside;
The mother cow doth nurse her calf,
Yet fares as well as her other half
In the pasture free and wide.

The female bird doth soar in air;
The female fish doth swim;
The fleet-foot mare upon the course
Doth hold her own with the flying horse–
Yea and she beateth him!

One female in the world we find
Telling a different tale.
It is the female of our race,
Who holds a parasitic place
Dependent on the male.

Not so, saith she, ye slander me!
No parasite am I.
I earn my living as a wife;
My children take my very life;
Why should I share in human strife,
To plant and build and buy?

The human race holds highest place
In all the world so wide,
Yet these inferior females wive,
And raise their little ones alive,
And feed themselves beside.

The race is higher than the sex,
Though sex be fair and good;
A Human Creature is your state,
And to be human is more great
Than even womanhood!

The female fox she is a fox;
The female whale a whale;
The female eagle holds her place
As representative of race
As truly as the male.

Charlotte Perkins Gilman
(1860-1935)
Females
Suffrage Songs and Verses

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Support PEN Belarus

This week, the Ministry of Justice in Belarus sent a letter indicating they are seeking to liquidate our sister organization PEN Belarus, which for years has supported writers and free expression in the country. It comes as the country’s authoritarian leader Aleksandr Lukashenka continues to crack down on all those who dissent. Show our colleagues and friends at PEN Belarus that they are not alone—and that we rally to support the freedom to write wherever and whenever it comes under threat.

Please join us and take action

Click here:

https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/i-support-pen-belarus?source=email&

Show your support for PEN Belarus.
Thank You!

 

PEN America stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect free expression in the United States and worldwide. They champion the freedom to write, recognizing the power of the word to transform the world. Their mission is to unite writers and their allies to celebrate creative expression and defend the liberties that make it possible.

Founded in 1922, PEN America is the largest of the more than 100 centers worldwide that make up the PEN International network. PEN America works to ensure that people everywhere have the freedom to create literature, to convey information and ideas, to express their views, and to access the views, ideas, and literatures of others.

More information on PEN America, click here

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Joe Hill: The Girl Question (song)

 

The Girl Question

A little girl was working in a big department store,
Her little wage for food was spent; her dress was old and tore.
She asked the foreman for a raise, so humbly and so shy,
And this is what the foreman did reply:

CHORUS:
Why don’t you get a beau?
Some nice old man, you know!
He’ll give you money if you treat him right.
If he has lots of gold,
Don’t mind if he is old.
Go! Get some nice old gentleman tonight.

The little girl then went to see the owner of the store,
She told the story that he’d heard so many times before.
The owner cried: “You are discharged! Oh, my, that big disgrace,
A ragged thing like you around my placel”

The little girl she said: “I know a man that can’t be wrong,
I’ll go and see the preacher in the church where I belong.”
She told him she was down and out and had no place to stay.
And this is what the holy man did say:

Next day while walking round she saw a sign inside a hall,
It read: THE ONE BIG UNION WILL GIVE LIBERTY TO ALL.
She said: I’ll join that union, and I’ll surely do my best,
And now she’s gaily singing with the rest:

FINAL CHORUS:
Oh, Workers do unite!
To crush the tyrant’s might,
The ONE BIG UNION BANNER IS UNFURLED —
Come slaves from every land,
Come join this fighting band,
It’s named INDUSTRIAL WORKERS OF THE WORLD .

Joe Hill
(1879-1915)
The Girl Question
(song)

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Sontag: Her Life and Work by Benjamin Moser

No writer is as emblematic of the American twentieth century as Susan Sontag. Mythologized and misunderstood, lauded and loathed, a girl from the suburbs who became a proud symbol of cosmopolitanism, Sontag left a legacy of writing on art and politics, feminism and homosexuality, celebrity and style, medicine and drugs, radicalism and Fascism and Freudianism and Communism and Americanism, that forms an indispensable key to modern culture. No writer negotiated as many worlds; no serious writer had as many glamorous lovers.

Sontag tells these stories and examines the work upon which her reputation was based. It explores the agonizing insecurity behind the formidable public face: the broken relationships, the struggles with her sexuality, that animated—and undermined—her writing.

And it shows her attempts to respond to the cruelties and absurdities of a country that had lost its way, and her conviction that fidelity to high culture was an activism of its own.

Utilizing hundreds of interviews conducted from Maui to Stockholm and from London to Sarajevo—and featuring nearly one hundred images—Sontag is the first book based on the writer’s restricted archives, and on access to many people who have never before spoken about Sontag, including Annie Leibovitz.

It is a definitive portrait—a great American novel in the form of a biography.

About Benjamin Moser: Benjamin Moser was born in Houston. He is the author of Why This World: A Biography of Clarice Lispector, a finalist for the National Book Critics’ Circle Award and a New York Times Notable Book of 2009. For his work bringing Clarice Lispector to international prominence, he received Brazil’s first State Prize for Cultural Diplomacy. He has published translations from French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Dutch. He is a former books columnist for Harper’s Magazine and The New York Times Book Review and has written for The New Yorker, Conde Nast Traveler, and The New York Review of Books.

Sontag: Her Life and Work
by Bejamin Moser
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize
for Biography
Publisher : Ecco
Illustrated edition
Language: : English
Sep 17, 2019
Hardcover
832 pages
ISBN-10 : 0062896393
ISBN-13 : 978-0062896391
$36.82

# new books
Susan Sontag
Biography

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Roger Robinson: A Portable Paradise (Poetry)

Winner of the T.S. Eliot Prize 2020 and the RSL Ondaatje Prize!

These are finely crafted poems that reveal Roger Robinson’s capacity to tell involving stories and capture the essence of a character in a few words, to move the emotions with the force of verbal expression, and engage our thoughts, as in the sequence of poems that reflect on just what paradise might be. A Portable Paradise is a feast to be carried by lovers of poetry wherever they go.

Roger Robinson’s range is wide: the joys and pains of family life; the ubiquitous presence of racism, both subtle and unsubtle; observations on the threatening edge of violence below the surface energies of Black British territories in London; emblematic poems on the beauty and often bizarre strangeness of the world of animals; quizzical responses to the strange, the heartening, and the appalling in incidents or accounts of incidents encountered in daily life; reflections on the purposes and costs of making art, as in fine poems on a George Stubbs’ painting, John Coltrane’s Ascension and cocaine. Not least, in the sequence of poems that reflect on the meanings of the Grenfell Tower fire, Roger Robinson finds ways to move beyond a just indignation to uncover the undertones of experience that bring us nearer to the human reality of that event.

The collection’s title points to the underlying philosophy expressed in these poems: that earthly joy is, or ought to be, just within, but is often just beyond our reach, denied by racism, misogyny, physical cruelty and those with the class power to deny others their share of worldly goods and pleasures. A Portable Paradise is not the emptiness of material accumulation, but joy in an openness to people, places, the sensual pleasures of food and the rewards to be had from the arts of word, sound and visual enticement – in short an “insatiable hunger” for life. The poems express a fierce anger against injustice, but also convey the irrepressible sense that Roger Robinson cannot help but love people for their humour, oddity and generosity of spirit.

These are finely crafted poems, that reveal Roger Robinson’s capacity to tell involving stories and capture the essence of a character in a few words, to move the emotions with the force of verbal expression, and engage our thoughts, as in the sequence of poems that reflect on just what paradise might be. A Portable Paradise is a feast to be carried by lovers of poetry wherever they go.

• Roger Robinson is a writer and performer who lives between London and Trinidad. His first full poetry collection, The Butterfly Hotel, was shortlisted for The OCM Bocas Poetry Prize. He has toured extensively with the British Council and is a co-founder of both Spoke Lab and the international writing collective Malika’s Kitchen.

• Review by Bernardine Evaristo for the New Statesman on Wednesday, November 13, 2019: “A Portable Paradise (Peepal Tree Press) is the fourth poetry collection by Trinidadian-British poet Roger Robinson. It’s also his finest, ranging from the most breath-taking poems about the Grenfell Tower fire to the most exquisitely moving poems about the premature birth of his son, who had to fight for his life in an incubator. His poems are deep, mature, moving and inventive.”

A Portable Paradise
Roger Robinson (author)
Publisher: Peepal Tree Press Ltd
ISBN: 9781845234331
Number of pages: 144
Dimensions: 206 x 135 mm
Paperback
Published: 08/07/2019
£9.99

# new poetry
Roger Robinson:
A Portable Paradise

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Joe Hill: Everybody’s Joining It (song)

Everybody’s Joining It

Fellow workers, can’t you hear,
There is something in the air.
Everywhere you walk everybody talks
‘Bout the I. W. W.
They have got a way to strike
That the master doesn’t like —
Everybody sticks,
That’s the only trick,
Al are joining now.

CHORUS:
Everybody’s joining it, joining what? Joining it!
Everybody’s joining it, joining what? Joining it!
One Big Union, that’s the workers’ choice,
One Big Union, that’s the only choice,
One Big Union, that’s the only noise,
One Big Union, shout with all your voice;
Make a noise, make a noise, make a noise, boys,
Everybody’s joining it, joining what? Joining it!
Everybody’s joining it, joining what? Joining it!
Joining in this union grand,
Boys and girls in every land;
All the workers hand in hand —
Everybody’s joining it now.

The’ Boss is feeling mighty blue,
He don’t know just what to do.
We have got his goat, got him by the throat,
Soon he’ll work or go starving.
Join I. W. W.
Don’t let bosses trouble you,
Come and join with us —
Everybody does —
You’ve got nothing to lose.

Will the One Big Union Grow?
Mister Bonehead wants to know.
Well! What do you think, of that funny gink,
Asking such foolish questions?
Will it grow? Well! Look a here,
Brand new locals everywhere,
Better take a hunch,
Join the fighting bunch,
Fight for Freedom and Right.

Joe Hill
(1879-1915)
Everybody’s Joining It
Song

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