Fajar Martha

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Marxism Today: the forgotten visionaries whose ideas could save Labour

In May 1988, a group of around 20 writers and academics spent a weekend at Wortley Hall, a country house north of Sheffield, loudly debating British politics and the state of the world. All drawn from the political left, by that point they were long used to defeat, chiefly at the hands of Margaret …

Communist Party

Happy 100th birthday, Sun Ra!

Sun Ra, or Herman Poole Blount as his parents christened him, passed away in June 1993. He would have been 100 years old today. Born in Birmingham, Alabama as an introverted child, Blount soon disposed of his birth name and fled the Deep South to become one of the most iconic and esoteric composers …

What happens to the internet when your country disappears?

Tuvalu, a tiny Polynesian island with a population of 12,000, receives millions of dollars a year for allowing non-Tuvaluan companies to use their registered .tv domain name. Other luckily named countries receive a similar windfall – Djibouti has .dj, which is handy for, you guessed it, DJs, and …

River Phoenix's last film is finally being released

When River Phoenix died of a drug overdose at Los Angeles' Viper Room in 1993, he was in the middle of production for <i>Dark Blood</i>. Described as an existential western, the film follows Boy (Phoenix), who lives in the middle of the desert and becomes dangerously obsessed with the wife of a …

Top ten albums of the month

<b>SEAN NICHOLAS SAVAGE – BERMUDA WATERFALL</b><p>The beguiling songwriter takes us to the tropics for his sex-dream inspired eleventh full-length release, and it’s a balmy, erotic and, as always, confessional adventure to undertake. Find out more about Savage’s dreams and realities here.<p><b>YVETTE – PROCESS</b><p>A …

Will a robot take your job?

Yesterday, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick announced that the cab company is aiming to replace its drivers with robots. "The reason Uber could be expensive is because you're not just paying for the car, you're paying for the other dude in the car," Kalanick said. His announcement comes in the same week …

The best in surveillance cinema

We recently published the winner of our surveillance short story contest. As cinema plays with the power of the gaze, it's proved ripe terrain for exploring fears of an all-seeing Big Brother in a world policed by technology. Here's our pick of the films in which being watched has sinister …

Fatima Al Qadiri: 'Me and my sister played video games as Saddam invaded'

"I believe in djinns," says Fatima Al Qadiri. "I believe in evil spirits that haunt the earth. I don't smell or see them, but I feel them – especially in Kuwait: it's one of the most haunted places on earth. Even with all the concrete and highways and esplanades. It's very creepy. We have Greek …

Fatima Al Qadiri's Chinese fantasy

When she watched <i>Aladdin</i> as a child, Fatima Al Qadiri was having none of it. Growing up in Kuwait, to see something of a culture she recognised being distorted by Disney was repellent to her. “It was an Arab tale,” she tells me, “and turning it into a Disney movie I found really offensive. I was …

New Elliott Smith Documentary Trailer Recalls Happier Times

An Elliott Smith movie three years in the making will finally have its premiere May 5 at the San Francisco International Film Festival, and you can …

Film Festivals

Inspired Punk Mockumentary

Punks railing against hypocrisy within the punk scene is nothing new, but rarely (if ever) has that old chestnut been given as funny a treatment as …

Comedy

Cult Czech filmmaker Věra Chytilová dies

Věra Chytilová, one of the leading filmmakers of the Czech New Wave cinema, has died aged 85. She died on Wednesday after battling an undisclosed illness for years.<p>She is best known for her critically acclaimed 1966 film <i>Daisies</i>, an anarchic comedy about two girls wreaking playful havoc, which the …

This was the first kiss ever filmed—and it was between two women

The Internet is currently ablaze over a video of strangers having a first kiss, but what was likely the first kiss committed to film was between two …

Have You Been Keeping Up With Our Documentaries?

Chiraq, Sharia punks, playing a gig in the aftermath of the Arab Spring...let us #HumbleBrag for a second, guys.<p>I love docs, me. There's nothing like breaking up several hours of white-gurls-twerking compilations with something over four minutes long, that requires some interaction with your brain. …

Watch This Documentary About the Punk Scene in East Los Angeles

It's not your typical view of L.A.<p>What do you know about Los Angeles, really? You might think it's all glitz, glamour, and accidentally running into Shia LaBeouf, but there's a side that's rarely shown when discussing the city at large. With the help of Vans, Angela Boatwright directed a …

Google's political efforts protested

Protests against Google moved from the tech giant's buses to its headquarters on Tuesday, as about two dozen activists traveled to Mountain View to question the company's ties to a conservative lobbying group.<p>Demonstrators including climate-change activists and the Raging Grannies - dressed largely …

Slough Feg

Mike Scalzi formed Slough Feg as The Lord Weird Slough Feg (the name of a villain in a British comic book series) in Pennsylvania in the late 1980s, but the group’s most associated with San Francisco, where Scalzi relocated to in 1990, and where he’s been a member of Hammers of Misfortune, among …

Sinéad O’Connor got what she didn’t want: mainstream acceptance

<i>In We’re No. 1,</i> The A.V. Club <i>examines an album that went to No. 1 on the</i> Billboard <i>charts to get to the heart of what it means to be popular in pop</i> …

Do you think that people who have been born blind see pictures when they dream? or colors?

I am in no way qualified to answer that. I studied Art History in college.. but through the forces of google I have found you this:<p>Hope this helps!<p>J

Woody Allen, Oscar bait, Hollywood’s fear: Where’s the movie that hits the 1 percent?

Major films used to engage with the issues of the day. So why are today’s acclaimed movies scared to face reality?<p>It seemed like a pretty big deal at the time: A violent crash on Wall Street of a scale we’d not seen in seven decades, hedge funds and investment banks collapsing, life savings …

4 ways Google is destroying privacy and collecting your data

Google Street View wasn’t only taking photographs, and your Android phone can do a lot more than make calls<p>No longer content to vacuum up, scan, index and sell analytics based on the content of our texts, emails, searches, locations and more, Google now has a new target: tapping, mapping and …

Stop telling single women they’re fabulous!

Being unmarried is now a life choice that gives women power. Can we all collectively drop the air of condescension?<p>I recently tried to schedule a ladies’ night with three single friends, and it quickly became one of those endless email threads that looped and circled for weeks. Amy has voice …

Study: Listening to Morrissey can brighten your mood

New research suggests sad music will lift you out of a funk — if you can truly immerse yourself in its beauty<p>Many of us instinctively turn to sad music when we’re feeling down. We may not be sure precisely why, but we do so with the unspoken belief that sorrowful sounds will lift our spirits.<p>Does …

Why Is Apple Being So Nostalgic?

A few weeks ago, Apple’s longtime ad creator Lee Clow suggestively tweeted, “Gonna be a goodSuper Bowl. Mac’s gonna be 30 :).” People immediately started speculating that the iPhone and iPad maker might air an ad celebrating the Macintosh computer’s birthday. Any fans waiting for an Apple ad on …

Open Source Should Thank These Five Companies

You may not use LinkedIn, but if you’ve ever visited Wikipedia, Tumblr, or Twitter—or done anything while using the Mozilla Firefox browser—you’ve benefited from LinkedIn’s code.<p>LinkedIn engineers developed and continue to steward the Apache Kafka messaging program, which just so happens to apply …

JK Rowling sues Daily Mail for libel over 'single mother' article

The Daily Mail has taken down a story from its website about the author JK Rowling after she sued the paper for libel.<p>Rowling says the online article, headlined "How JK Rowling's sob story about her past as a single mother has left the churchgoers who cared for her upset and bewildered", …

Kevin Spacey on dead dogs and deviousness in 'House of Cards'

Netflix original drama <i>House of Cards</i> has won plaudits from critics, a Golden Globe award for actress Robin Wright, and a potential third season. But in a lengthy interview with the show's star Kevin Spacey — who plays scheming Congressman Frank Underwood —<i>The Wall Street Journal</i> notes how much of a …

Neil Gaiman’s 8 Rules of Writing

In the winter of 2010, inspired by Elmore Leonard’s 10 rules of writing published in <i>The New York Times</i> nearly a decade earlier, <i>The Guardian</i> reached out to some of today’s most celebrated authors and asked them to each offer his or her commandments. After Zadie Smith’s 10 rules of writing, here come …

New Artist of the Day: The Jungfraus

<b>Five-piece Manchester Psych-Pop band The Jungfraus have just released their eponymous debut album, and, according to Louder Than War’s Robert Pegg,</b> …

Why is female sexuality called a sickness in the Arab world?

<i>Taken from the February issue of Dazed & Confused:</i><p>There are countless names for the penis and the vagina in the Arabic language. You’d think our only problem is to decide which one to use. Well, think again. Our problem is that we don’t use any of them. So much so that the majority of these words …