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This week’s front page editor


Francesc Badia i Dalmases is Editor and Director of democraciaAbierta.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

“When words become unclear, I shall focus with images. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence” – Ansel Adams

openDemocracy’s image of the week.

Sun, sand...and indefinite detention

The UK’s second largest immigration detention centre is about to open in Weymouth. Jennifer Allsopp reports on local responses to the imminent presence of hundreds of foreigners, locked up off the coast of this small and friendly town. 

Anti-deportation campaigns: ‘What kind of country do you want this to be?’

A new musical, Glasgow Girls, showcases the power of anti-deportation campaigns as both an expression of human solidarity and an essential device for holding states to account. But their key role, argues Jennifer Allsopp, is to build support for an asylum system that upholds the rights of all.

On the streets in Spain: not only the homeless

The monarchy, the political and economic systems, even the judiciary and the church appear to be failing the people of Spain as they face what amounts to a right-wing coup by a Government that legislates by decree. Their only option seems to be to protest on the streets, says Liz Cooper.

Giant strides or fairy footsteps

How much progress can be made in tackling climate change without a global deal?

"Monk by the sea", Caspar David Friedrich

Land, sea, sky and a solitary monk mark the height of German Romanticism

Palestine and Israel: Side-by-side

Photographic dialogue between young Israelis and Palestinians

'The Great Migration', Jacob Lawrence

Jacob Lawrence illustrates the mass exodus of African-Americans to search for a better life in the north.

Humanism in China

A photographic self-portrait spanning fifty years of life in China.

The Burning of the Books

Truth, heresy and repression in thirteenth-century Europe.


Seventy years since the bombing of Guernica, Picasso's masterpiece stands as an iconic condemnation of the suffering caused by war.

'South African Photographs', David Goldblatt

A land, a people and a society through the lens of David Goldblatt.

'Aral Tengizi: Story of a Dying Sea', Radek Skrivanek

A second life for the Aral Sea?

Radek Skrivanek's photo-documentary project explores the legacy of the former Soviet regime and its destructive impact on the environment of Central Asia, specifically, the Aral Sea.

'Guantánamo', Paolo Pellegrin

What is life like at Guantánamo Bay? Photographer Paolo Pellegrin offers a rare glimpse: over 100 photos inside the prison complex, plus audio interviews with human rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith and former Camp X-Ray detainee, Moazzam Begg.

Transatlantic slave trade

Departure, transit and arrival: photos and relics from the height of the transatlantic slave trade.

'Traces of memory', Chris Schwarz

On a recent visit to Poland, openDemocracy’s Rafael Broch is quietly inspired by an exhibition exploring the lost Jewish culture of Galicia.


“From the shores of the Mediterranean, I prefer to remember the warmth and the dance. From Beirut I do not want to speak of missed opportunities, but of a city that was opened to travellers, a tolerant harbour.” Artist, entrepreneur, writer, and openDemocracy friend, Mai Ghoussoub explains her love of words, images and ideas.

The Atlas Group, Walid Raad

How does one tell the story of war? Nominated for the 2007 Photography Prize, Walid Raad’s visual records of modern Lebanon attempt to address the issues of retelling and representing a bloody history.

'Bashu, Little Stranger,' Bahram Beizai

Will there be war between the US and Iran? Who – other than Paul Rogers – knows? As the storm clouds gather, the Small Picture looks back at Bahram Beizai’s masterful anti-war work.

Child soldiers

Today, the ICC ruled that Thomas Lubanga, notorious child soldier-enlister, would be the first suspect to stand trial for his role in the Congolese civil war. From Kinshasha to Freetown, former child soldiers draw their experiences.

'Soccer Players,' Matija Skurjeni

Naive footballers?

'Minutes to midnight,' Trent Parke

A road-trip across Australia.

'Glitter and Doom'

An intense cultural creativity underlined the troubled political peace of 1920s Germany. A new exhibition highlights art from the short-lived Weimar Republic.

'Signs around Iran', Niki Akhavan

“Dear customer, for a thousand and one reasons, all prices are final.” Niki Akhavan photographs everyday signs in Iran.

Iraqi Kurdistan, Ed Kashi

As civil war threatens to overwhelm an increasingly volatile Iraq, what is life like for the Kurds? A series of animated snapshots of life in northern Iraq.

Border Post

Storyboard stills from Rajko Grlić's "Border Post", a film focusing on a group of soldiers in the final years of the Yugoslavian republic.

'Peralta stone maps'

Does X mark the spot?

'Al que nace pa' martillo,' Milton Rosa Ortiz

From a new exhibition by Milton Rosa Ortiz: eight ethereal sculptures, suspended by filaments, made from hundreds of coral and glass shards gathered from the Puerto Rican coastline.

'Snowscapes and roadscapes,' Abbas Kiarostami

A new photographic series by acclaimed Iranian filmmaker, Abbas Kiarostami.

'Female Figure,' Santiago Rusiñol

Portrait by Santiago Rusiñol, a Catalan modernist painter, poet and playwright.

'Terre Rouge relocation,' John Vink

John Vink photographs government-enforced evictions in Cambodia’s urban poor community.

Dr. Strangelove, LFF 2006

The 50th BFI London Film Festival opens this week, showcasing the work of the best new directors and revisiting old masters.

Kashmir earthquake: one year on

Photographs marking the first anniversary of the earthquake in Kashmir which killed nearly 75,000 people on 8 October 2005.
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