The Wake of Tragedy: Considering Charlie Hebdo Weeks Later

PARIS — It is always hard to write in the midst of dramatic events. In the days following the attack on Charlie Hebdo, it felt impossible to report on the tragic attack or the ensuing manhunt for gunmen Chérif and Saïd Kouachi and Amedy Coulibaly. Though I did not feel particularly affected by the attack, […]

The Freedom to Be Funny: Reflecting on France’s Tradition of Satire

In a 2012 Le Monde interview the late publishing director of Charlie Hebdo, Stéphane Charbonnier said these now iconic words: “I would rather die standing up than live on my knees.” (In fact the quote originates with Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata.) In the same article, another of the magazine’s cartoonists injured in the attack, Riss […]

March in Paris Brings “Fraternity” into the Foreground

PARIS — More than 4 million people marched all over France yesterday, January 11, 2015. Between 1.5 and 2 millions took to the streets in Paris alone. In fact these numbers are only vague estimations, since the crowds in Paris were so large and their routes so unpredictable, that it was impossible to truly count the […]

France Reacts to Charlie Hebdo Massacre

PARIS – All over Facebook, people changed their profile pictures to a simple black box with broad white letters that reads “Je suis Charlie.” Joachim Roncin from the French magazine Stylist designed the image just after the terrorist attack that targeted the Parisian office of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday January 7, at […]

Weekly Editorial: The Media, The Extremists and the Freedom of Speech

For more than two centuries, the United States have carried a reputation regarding the freedom of speech: they are the free-ist country in the world. Except for exceptional circumstances, everyone in the country is entitled to express publicly whatever they think. This right has become entrenched in the country’s tradition and is, rightfully, a pride […]