Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas
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Worst of the Worst

The U.S. holds the sad distinction of putting more people behind bars than any other country in the world—over 2.4 million people in prisons and jails. Many of the most brutal and depressing facilities—and those inside them—are tucked out of public view. A group of Connecticut film makers, however, managed to penetrate the veil of … Read more

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Para todo mal, mezcal; para todo bien, también

Mezcal used to be sniffed at by Mexican sophisticates as the slightly less respectable cousin of tequila—a fiery peasant’s drink consumed in dark corner bars or rural ranchos in Oaxaca, where 94 percent of Mexico’s mezcal is produced. But that is no longer the case. For many trend-setters in the capital and elsewhere, mezcal has … Read more

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Graphicanos

View a slideshow of Graphicanos prints below. Indiana is better known for the Indy 500 and sports teams than for a thriving art culture, so most art lovers would be surprised to stumble upon the cutting-edge exhibit of serigraphic prints—a contemporary art form that uses block-size ink stencils to print images onto canvas—on display this … Read more

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Fresh Look Reviews

Fresh, unique perspectives on recent books from across the hemisphere originally published in English, Spanish and Portuguese.

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Arts Innovator: Luis Antonio Vilchez, Peru

Watch a video of Luis Antonio Vilchez dancing in Times Square below. Passing through New York’s Times Square one winter day in 2010, Lima native Luis Antonio Vilchez noticed a group of street percussionists playing a familiar Afro-Peruvian rhythm—and immediately decided to join them. Soon, a large crowd gathered as Vilchez, wearing a button-down shirt … Read more

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Innovators

Some of our hemisphere’s emerging leaders in politics, business, civil society, and the arts.

 

Cuba’s Loudest Citizens Are Literally Screaming To Be Heard

On Saturday nights in central Havana, a scene unfolds that defies stereotypes on this communist island famous for its salsa, strong rum and revolutionary heroes. With the hiss of a fog machine, the country’s iconic rock star, Diony Arce, emerges from the darkness inside a local theater. He grabs a microphone and launches into a … Read more

 

City of God, City of Barriers

Some see Rio’s favelas as crime-ridden danger zones. Cavi Borges, a local filmmaker, sees them as dynamic film sets. The movie producer and director hops on the back of a motorcycle taxi at the base of the Vidigal favela—a shantytown snaking up Morro Dois Irmãos in Rio de Janeiro—and zips through a series of alleyways … Read more

 

Clarín Group Adheres to Argentine Media Law

Clarín Group, Argentina’s largest media conglomerate, announced plans Monday to divide its operations into six subsidiary companies, in compliance with the country’s Ley de Medios (Media Law). The anti-monopoly law was upheld by the Argentine Supreme Court last week after four years of legal disputes between Clarín and the federal government. Clarín representatives said the … Read more

 

El Barrio Tours

East Harlem—also known as Spanish Harlem or El Barrio—located in northeastern Manhattan, has long been a destination for immigrants settling in New York City. Once a hub for recent arrivals from Germany and Italy, the neighborhood became a primarily Puerto Rican enclave after World War II. Andrew Padilla, a 23-yearold filmmaker who was born and … Read more

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10 Things to Do: Antigua, Guatemala

La Antigua, in Guatemala’s central highlands, offers a trip through several layers of time, providing snapshots of baroque Spanish colonial architecture, pre-Colombian Mayan cultures and ancient but still smoldering volcanoes. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site, it’s a short drive from the bustling national capital of Guatemala City. Don’t forget to bring sturdy walking shoes. … Read more

 

World Creole Festival

The Caribbean island of Dominica is known as Nature Island for its natural beauty, quiet and rich ecology, but this month it will come alive with pulsing rhythms and dance to mark the 17th annual World Creole Music Festival. The October 25–27 festival draws tens of thousands of visitors each year. The music on display … Read more

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Prost, Brazil!

Grab a stein-full of caipirinha and stroll down to Ipanema beach in your lederhosen—it’s Germany-Brazil Year in Brazil. The yearlong festival, aimed at deepening German-Brazilian relations, kicked off in May with the opening of the German-Brazilian Economic Forum in São Paulo. “Brazil is one of the most successful new centers of power in the world,” … Read more

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