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Creative Action

Charlie Chaplin’s Enduring Legacy

Few individuals did more to shape modern cinema than the actor, director, and producer Charlie Chaplin. One of the greatest of all comic mimes, he also pioneered cinematic techniques and storytelling. His films with his iconic role as the beleaguered Little Tramp with baggy trousers, mustache, cane, and bowler hat were not only comic masterpieces, but unflinching looks at poverty, unemployment, capitalism, exploitation, the callousness of authority, the search for meaning and dignity in a hostile world, and the yearning for love and acceptance. He argued that drama should be derived from the close observation of life. He refused to follow the conventions, including the penchant for exaggerated melodrama, perfecting his work with hundreds of takes, subtle acting, and nuanced facial expressions.

Lessons From One Unequal Society To Another

This past Sunday, Chileans voted once again on a new constitution, opting to reject — for the second time in two years — an attempt at constitutional revision. Rejecting a highly conservative text, voters chose to keep the dictatorship-era constitution for the time being. A political saga that began amid immense hope has now devolved into a dismal disarray that’s left countless Chileans tired and frustrated. Here in the United States, we face an equally bleak political outlook. According to a recent Pew Research Center report, 25 percent of U.S. adults feel that neither of the nation’s two major parties represents them adequately enough. Some 63 percent of Americans express little to no confidence in the future of our political system.

German Anti-Racists Get Creative With ‘Rave Against The Right’

At first glance, it seemed like any other Monday evening in Görlitz, the most eastern town in Germany — where Poland sits just across the river. It was July 31, and a couple hundred people had gathered as part of the so-called Monday demonstrations to protest refugees, the COVID-19 vaccine and the government’s green energy politics.  They carried banners that read “stop the flood of asylum seekers and the import of violence” and “we are the youth without a migration background.” Some clutched onto an inflatable balloon of German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach in convict clothes, insinuating he should be in prison over COVID-19 vaccine regulations and lockdowns. There were flags of the German empire and flags belonging to the far-right Alternative for Germany, or AfD, party, with the slogan “our country first.”
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