Anaïs Ortega Druml: Artivism at the Lebanese-Syrian border
‘What can we do when there is nothing to do, nothing but daily survival in an existence that is not really ours?’ Anaïs Ortega Druml, a PhD researcher in art, activism and migration at the University of Lausanne, explains how cultural projects in Bekaa, Lebanon seek to support Syrian refugees cope with “pervasive emptiness”
Robin McAlpine: Joy as an act of resistance
In his final column of the year, Common Weal director Robin McAlpine makes the case for eudemonic happiness, where we ditch searching for the latest consumerist high or even faddish political narrative, and instead embrace cost-free joy
MY FAVOURITE (and I think the most vital) album of 2018 is by a Bristol band called Idles.
Robin McAlpine: Karine Polwart's finances make me wonder what the hell we really value
Common Weal director Robin Mcalpine argues our society does not place value on people with creativity and energy, instead rewarding mediocrity and bureaucracy
AT THE weekend I hunted out Karine Polwart's truly wonderful 2012 album Traces for a re-listen. I'm glad I did. It reminded me how good it is.
But it also pissed me off. Not the music I hasten to add, the fact that what prompted me to play it again was an interview with Karine in which she talked about the financial difficulty of trying to make a living making music in Scotland.
'Extolling terrorism' in Spain: The Spider Operation and the persecution of freedom of expression
Raphael ‘Tsavkko’ Garcia (@Tsavkko_intl), journalist and PhD candidate in Human Rights at University of Deusto, Basque Country, looks at Operation Spider, Spain’s crackdown on musicians and others who are accused of “extolling terrorism” – i.e. have controversial opinions – on social media
Palestinian musicians 47Soul to bring message of resistance to Perthshire festival
Solas Festival to put social justice centre stage with eclectic lineup of music, arts and politics
PALESTINIAN HIP HOP group 47Soul will perform at Solas Festival on 22 June, where they will bring their message of resistance against oppression to Perthshire.
Now in its tenth year, Solas Festival aims to reflect the wider social and political context of music and the arts, and organisers have welcomed the opportunity to showcase the unapologetically political music of 47Soul.
Daniel Quinn: If we want to address toxic masculinity we need to get serious about mental health and education
Rapper Daniel Quinn (‘Wee D’) spoke at an STUC event on mental health on Saturday [19 May] about male mental health issues. Here, he outlines his perspective, and why he thinks education is key to addressing it
I BELIEVE that toxic masculinity is a huge cultural issue that has become embedded at the core of society for as long as we can really remember.
Consciousness and commercialism: The two opposing sides of Kendrick Lamar
CommonSpace music critic Robert Blair takes a look at the contradictions between American rapper Kendrick Lamar's work and his actions
FROM the moment that his 2015 magnum opus To Pimp A Butterfly sprouted its wings and made its way from the confines of recording studios and into our homes, headphones and minds, it swiftly elevated the man born Kendrick Lamar Duckworth to the status of one of the finest and most ambitious artists of his generation.