Category: Essay

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COVID-19, MY COMRADE: Central-European Graffiti and Street-Art Responses to Pandemic

Written and photographed by Mitja Velikonja, Professor of Cultural Studies, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia

In the beginning is the scream. … And lots of screaming can be heard lately, in difficult times of global COVID-19 pandemic. As a researcher of urban cultures and radical politics I’m particularly interested in “sprayed screams,” … reacting to the disease and even more to governmental medical, social and economic measures against it.

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Pandemic BLM Politics: Graffiti from New York, Long Beach, and Los Angeles

By Carrie Paterson
Photos by Seph Rodney, Mario Ybarra Jr., and Carrie Paterson

It was lucky for me that early in the (first?) summer of the pandemic, I encountered the writings of Slovenian “graffitologist” Mitja Velikonja, just as my home street corner started filling up with warring pandemic wheatpaste posters and stickers. Like many shops and businesses around the country, the tenants decided to board up the windows in a (hyperbolic, on my quiet street) show of fear about property damage that might ensue from the Black Lives Matter protests

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My School Years After the War

By Peter Sichrovsky

I had no problems with anti-Semitism, neither in elementary school nor later in high school. The teachers stayed behind, often talking about their experiences during the war, some of them also open about being in the SS, but they left me alone. Life was far more difficult for my parents. … My mother did not want to talk to me about any of the former Wehrmacht officers who were my teachers now.