• Books: Bury the Chains by Adam Hochschild, Endless War: Hidden Functions of the "war on terror" by David Keen, Capital Vol. 1, Tin Drum by Günter Grass, What is Islam? by Shahab Ahmed, Desiring Arabs by Joseph Massad, Spies, Soldiers and Statesmen by Hazem Kandil, La Condition Humaine by André Malraux, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, Imagined Community by Benedict Anderson, Culture and Imperialism by Edward Said, The Wretched of the Earth by Frantz Fanon, The Richness of Life by Stephen Jay Gould, Children of the Alley by Naguib Mahfouz, The Mass Psychology of Fascism by Wilhelm Reich, Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, 1984 by George Orwell, Noli me Tangere by José Rizal, Age of Extremes by Eric Hobsbawm, ذهنية التحريم لصادق جلال العظم, Karl Marx by Francis Wheen, وليمة لأعشاب البحر لحيدر حيدر, Candide by Voltaire, النزعات المادية في الفلسفة العربية الإسلامية لحسين مروة, Listen Little Man by Wilhelm Reich ..
  • Films: Alexanderplatz by Rainer Fassbinder, Clockwork Orange, Apocalypse Now, The Battle of Algiers, films by P. P. Passolini, Persepolis, Midnight Express, 1984, Papillion, Gangs of New York, Sophie Scholl, Life of Brian, Ivan the Terrble, Battleship Potemkine ...

Thursday, January 28, 2016

"The organizers of the #ausnahmslos campaign don’t deny that the scale and coordination of the assaults in Cologne were alarming. But they point out that sexual harassment is a far more common occurrence in Germany than is typically acknowledged, especially at traditional German events like Munich’s Oktoberfest and Cologne’s Karneval, where large crowds tend to gather under the influence of massive amounts of alcohol. A 2014 study from the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights found that one in three women in Germany has been the victim of physical or sexual violence (or both) since the age of 15.

“If there’s anything we can gain from what happened in Cologne, it’s that we start openly talking about the issue of sexual violence against women, regardless of who the perpetrators are,” said Elke Ferner, the parliamentary state secretary at the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women, and Youth, who signed the #ausnahmslos campaign’s open letter. “When you make it a problem involving people from North Africa, of the Muslim faith, you’re making the problem smaller than it actually is.”

The Cologne assaults have exposed what lawyers and feminists say are serious deficits in Germany’s penal code. Sexual assault is criminally punishable in Germany only when the act involves force — in other words, when violence is used or threatened, or when the victim is in a defenseless situation.

This legal definition has perverse effects in practice. Consider the assaults in Cologne, where many women reported they were groped between the legs and under their clothes. Because the perpetrators used the element of surprise and not violence, German courts would likely not consider them to have committed sexual assault. The men (if they are ever identified) would probably only be charged for the theft that accompanied the touching.

Full article on foreignpolicy.com

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