Readings this week and beyond!

Tuesday, November 16 at Modern Times 7 p.m. (888 Valencia) for The Political Edge (with Bianca Henry, Marlena Sonn, Quintin Mecke, Rick Prelinger, David Rosen, and Med-o Whitson).
Friday, November 19 at AK Press 7:30 p.m. (674A 23rd St. Oakland) for The Political Edge (with Iain Boal, Erick Lyle, Hugh D’Andrade, Alli Starr)
Nov. 30, 7 p.m. Bird & Beckett (2788 Diamond St. SF)
Dec. 2, 7 p.m., Books Inc. (2274 Market St.)

Dec. 7, 7 p.m. Modern Times (888 Valencia)
Dec. 15, 7 p.m. City Lights Books (261 Columbus)


There is no more eloquent voice from inside the insanity of Iraq than the woman known as Riverbend . Her humanity is so powerful and her voice so beautiful that she regularly moves me nearly to tears. Trying to imagine the horror of living under the ongoing U.S. rape of Iraq is difficult from the U.S. where we have no idea what it is like to suffer aerial bombardment from supposedly “brave, manly” soldiers, where the arbitrary brutality of scared young men carrying heavy arms and (too many of them) on a crusade against Islam leads to acts that the word ‘degradation’ is far too soft for. Riverbend mostly seems to stay safely in her home and neighborhood, suffering the endless blackouts

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The Links

Somalian writer Nuruddin Farah is a fantastic writer. I earlier read his novel “Gifts” and just finished his latest last night, “The Links.” It’s the story of a Somalian who now lives in New York with his wife and daughters who goes back to Mogadiscio to honor his mother’s grave. The story begins with his arrival at a small airstrip outside of the city. Surprisingly someone has sent a vehicle to pick him up, even though Jeebleh didn’t think anyone knew he was coming. Immediately we are faced with the jarring chaos of Somalia, young men striding around with heavy machine guns, intoxicated with qaat, an impenetrable disregard for life seeming to permeate all the characters he sees. Slowly we are drawn into his story as he tries to make sense of the city and life he once knew so well, now reduced to civil war…

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