Chicken Fat: A Great Thing That Comics Do

I’ve been reading Fog Over Tolbiac Bridge, a classic French comic by the great Jacques Tardi, recently reprinted by Fantagraphics. It’s an adaption of a detective novel, and it is good. Tardi has a way of telling hard-boiled detective stories with this loose, springy style that brings another level of joy to the work — picture Shel Silverstein let loose on film noir.

COLLINS | Terror in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction


“To pry an object from its shell, to destroy its aura, is the mark of a perception whose ‘sense of the universal equality of things’ has increased to such a degree that it extracts it even from a unique object by means of production”

                       — Walter Benjamin, The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

“I just wanted … something that everybody could understand easily, and everybody could share regardless of where they’re from”

                      — Jean Jullien on his drawing “Peace for Paris.”

I swore that I would not write about the November 13 and 14 terror attacks in Paris. I write from 3,665 miles away and amidst a deluge of photographs, videos, opinion pieces and articles. I swore that I would not write because of the difficulty of feeling that I knew anything beyond lists of facts and statistics: how many people were murdered, how many more injured, where the attacks occurred, which nations closed their borders, which states decided to stop accepting refugees. In the place of resolute, dispassionate knowledge, I saw emotional knowledge. In a Le Petit Journal video, Angel Le poignantly discussed the attacks with his toddler son Brandon.

ALUR | Finding Solace In Sound

In light of the terror, tragedy, and immense violence of this past weekend, I’d like to spend my column discussing the ways in which music can offer comfort during tumultuous times. On Tuesday, NPR’s All Songs Considered released a playlist entitled “Music for Healing.” The playlist is a collection of works intended to be a meditation of sorts on humanity and the global experience of music. It is inclusive in many ways: offering tracks from a variety of parts of the world and deeming varied styles equally, though distinctively, restorative. In response to the attacks on Paris and Beirut, this playlist endeavors to counter xenophobia, encouraging compassion and coexistence rather than retribution. The hosts of All Songs Considered discuss a Twitter hashtag that encouraged people around the world to describe their personal experiences with concerts.

All Cornellians in Paris Declared Safe; Garrett Condemns Attacks

Following a series of terrorist attacks in Paris Friday, the University confirmed Saturday that all known Cornellians currently working or studying in Paris are safe. The attacks, which left at least 129 dead, were part of a plot carried out by the Islamic State that included a mass shooting, hostage taking and several explosions, according to French officials. Approximately 20 students and staff members were in Paris at the time of the bombings, according to Lex Enrico Santí, the University’s coordinator for travel and safety. A double suicide bombing also occurred in Beirut, Lebanon, Thursday, killing 43 people. However, no Cornellians were known to be in Beirut at the time, Santí said. In response to the attacks, President Elizabeth Garrett released a statement Saturday decrying the acts of terrorism.

HARDIN | Social Media Solidarity

Last week the world seemed to implode. At home, thousands of college students mobilized against the institutional racism of our higher education system  — and received death threats in the process. Across the world, terrorist attacks took hundreds of innocent lives. The sensationalist media presence only increases our sense of helplessness as observers. In times like these, it often seems much easier to turn off the news.

BANKS | Crooked Records

Tragedy struck on Friday, and so the world weeps. But for whom? The world certainly weeps for the 129 and counting who have fallen in Paris, as it should. Once again, hundreds of lives have been lost to terror, and so the world has responded to this global tragedy, because terror is terror is terror, and a human being is a human being, period. Yes, when extremists strike, the whole world listens and responds with fear, fury and anguish.