Archive

Behind the Scenes: Making a Hymnal

August 31, 2018 Melodie Davis

Another Way for week of August 24, 2018 Behind the Scenes: Making a Hymnal What is your all-time favorite hymn or spiritual/religious piece of music? That may be hard to narrow down, but if you are a regular reader of this column, I know that you likely go to church and participate in regular worship services. If you do that, you also likely enjoy the songs and hymns most churches count as a very important part of their worship of God. It is the music portion of a service that most often moves me emotionally, even to tears, and I’m […]

Minding the Gap

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August 30, 2018 Gordon Houser

Many documentaries have in mind the point they want to get across and make the film fit that notion. A few let themes unfold as they present a narrative. Minding the Gap is one of the latter—and one of the best documentaries to emerge this year, when there are many good ones out. Bing Liu both directs the film and appears in it. It begins by showing skateboarders in Rockford, Illinois, with the camera (held by Liu who is himself on a skateboard) following the graceful, acrobatic skills of the young skateboarders. The music—neither intrusive nor overly dramatic—fits perfectly with […]

America’s Got Talent

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August 24, 2018 Matthew Kauffman Smith

In my review about The Voice show four years ago, I declared that I no longer believe in guilty pleasures. If I legitimately like something that most people – or even I – deem to be low brow, I embrace it. The truth is that I haven’t watched The Voice much since that column. That is probably because I only have room in my life for one reality TV show, and for the past two seasons that show has been America’s Got Talent.  Unlike talent-specific shows such as singing-based shows The Voice and American Idol, or dance shows like So […]

Christopher Robin

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August 17, 2018 Michelle D. Sinclair

When I first heard about the new Disney movie Christopher Robin, I imagined a biopic of sorts about the real-life Christopher Robin Milne. A.A. Milne’s son inspired the Pooh stories and loved them as a boy, but he grew up to have a love-hate relationship with his father’s work and his role in the books. It turns out, Marc Forster‘s Christopher Robin is entirely fiction and bears no resemblance to the real Christopher’s adult life. All the animals of the Hundred Acre Wood gather to say farewell to Christopher Robin as he leaves for boarding school. Christopher promises Pooh he’ll […]

 Humanitarian assistance and politics

August 17, 2018 Thirdway

by Xin-Dee Low, international affairs intern at the MCC U.S. Washington Office, Summer 2018   Sanctions, economic embargoes and withholding humanitarian assistance are sometimes seen as effective foreign policy tools. Many policymakers believe they can indirectly twist the opposition’s arm into carrying out their interest. But civilian lives should not be put in jeopardy because the people in power are unwilling to reconcile. In January the United States announced it would freeze funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), which provides assistance to Palestinian refugees. UNRWA has been working hard to gather political and financial support around the […]

Eighth Grade

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August 10, 2018 Vic Thiessen

Do you remember eighth grade? I remember it all too well. For me, it was the most difficult year of my life, especially in terms of relating to my peers. But I cannot begin to imagine how much worse that year might have been if I had been a girl in our age of social media. That’s the premise of Bo Burnham’s debut film (he wrote and directed), Eighth Grade, which stars Elsie Fisher as 14-year-old Kayla Day. Kayla, in her final weeks of middle school, is trying to navigate the daily experience of being shunned or ignored by her […]

Climate Change and Women

August 6, 2018 Third Way

By Whitney Ricker, Climate Advocacy Intern, Center for Sustainable Climate Solutions Climate change is not often thought of as a gender issue, yet it is becoming increasingly clear that women are particularly vulnerable to its impacts. As we continue to see an increase in natural disasters and environmental degradation, global poverty and suffering are also increased, further marginalizing vulnerable populations. In many parts of the world, women are at a significant disadvantage as compared to their male counterparts, making their survival during times of crisis much more difficult. Globally, women between the ages of 25 and 34 are 22 percent […]

The King and Won’t You Be My Neighbor

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August 3, 2018 Jerry L. Holsopple

  Filmmaker Eugene Jarecki takes the front seat in Elvis Presley’s 1963 Rolls Royce to explore America in a new film, The King. The coast to coast drive explores the American Dream, the roots of rock and roll, the 2016 U.S. election and the nature of success using Elvis as the metaphoric story. Ethan Hawke shares, near the end, that Elvis at each juncture in his career chose money, more money rather than what might have made him happy or fulfilled. Jarecki uses this theme to make social commentary on the U.S., suggesting that the dream is dead, or really […]

Children bridging differences

August 1, 2018 Third Way

Children bridging differences By Rachel Bergen Walk into Hagar Association, a school in Be’er Sheba, Israel, and it looks like almost any other school. But if you listen closely, you’ll hear children speaking both Hebrew and Arabic and see them playing together—uncommon sounds and sights in the region. Hagar is a bilingual MCC-supported school for 330 Jewish-Israeli and Palestinian citizens of Israel (sometimes called “Arab”) children, ages 1 to grade six. The children come from homes where Islam, Judaism or Christianity are practiced. The school is the only one of its kind in the Negev region of southern Israel. According […]

Three Identical Strangers

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July 27, 2018 Matthew Kauffman Smith

The age-old psychology debate of nature versus nurture has been studied and argued for years, but it’s not super splashy. No Hollywood exec is asking Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson to star in an action thriller where he must choose between his friends Nurture and Nature—all while saving a burning building. As far as I know, Nature vs. Nurture: The Musical isn’t coming to Broadway anytime soon. The new documentary Three Identical Strangers, however, plays out like a compelling mystery, leaving the viewers to believe nature wins—only to turn that whole theory on its head in the second half of the […]