Kaddish for Benjamin Barber

Yesterday, my dear, dear mentor, friend and inspiration, Benjamin Barber, passed away.  Benjamin was this extraordinary author I put so high in my intellectual development that my whole bibliography portal was named after him… Benjamin was a star in the intellectual universe and a New Yorker at that. He had made himself a name and reputation with A Strong Democracy, his powerful book about Switzerland democratic … Continue reading Kaddish for Benjamin Barber

Balkanic puzzle: au balcon des Balkans 

Obviously, the Balkans fascinate and puzzle me…they sound to me like this Mezze plate, everything is tasty and savory, yet it’s recommended to keep them separately! Par un étrange concours de circonstances, je me suis retrouvée, un an après une première incursion dans les Balkans, à nouveau dans cette région, immédiatement après mon séjour en Ukraine. De nouveaux Etats, tous nés de l’implosion d’immenses empires disloqués, issus -et … Continue reading Balkanic puzzle: au balcon des Balkans 

Nation, Religion, Language and Memory in cosmopolitan Ukrainian identities

As you all know by now, I love traveling and meeting new people and cultures. When I announced my visit to Ukraine, my friend Kateryna immediately gave me so many tips and wanted to make me meet her friends to such an extent that I was expecting a very warm and lively encounter… Yet, I have to admit that rarely in my life have I … Continue reading Nation, Religion, Language and Memory in cosmopolitan Ukrainian identities

Mixed feelings in the Cosmopolitan Kiev Metropolis 

Arriving in this city so often depicted in Isaac Bashevis Singer and where Haim Nachman Byalik, Isaac Babel, Sholem Aleihem were born or spent part of their lives meant something for me…The shadow of Brodsky,the Rothschild of Eastern Europe loomed like its namesaked synagogue and even the fact that Jaroslav Hašek, the author of The Good Soldier Švej had lived brought upon my landing definite … Continue reading Mixed feelings in the Cosmopolitan Kiev Metropolis 

Andalousie intemporelle 

Je reviens d’un inoubliable voyage à Séville. Accompagnée de mes élèves et d’une collègue, j’appréhendais la sinécure, or ce ne furent que rires, partages, émotions, sensations et délices des sens. Ce qui frappe avant tout dans cette capitale de l’Andalousie, c’est le parfum entêtant des orangers en fleurs….au clair d’une lune printanière notamment mais nuit et jour, où que vous soyez ! L’accueil andalous rappelle … Continue reading Andalousie intemporelle 

Que Vuitton de plus?

I’m absolutely amazed at the incredible exhibition I was able to enjoy at the Vuitton Foundation in Paris. Let me share my favorite from my favorite city…. this is a purely subjective selection, a tribute from a cosmopolitan to a real cosmopolitan master! Indeed who could be more cosmopolitan than this Russian collector of French artists ? La collection Chtchoukine est un mythe de l’histoire … Continue reading Que Vuitton de plus?