Monthly Archives: September 2011

September 11, 2011

Lessons in Patriotism

Patriotism—love of one’s country—is a treacherous emotion. Too little of it, and we aren’t motivated to make necessary sacrifices on behalf of our national brothers and sisters.  Too much of it, or too much of the wrong sort, and exclusionary nationalism—in the form of various ethnic and religious hatreds– takes over.   The challenges of getting …

September 5, 2011

Communal Narrative on Parade at Annual West Indian American Day Carnival

In our social lives, narrative is not only something we tell but also something we perform. Public rituals like parades give us the chance to chronicle our communities in physical space and display the symbols and activities that define us. The words of George Fitch in Colliers Magazine in 1913, testifying to the popular pleasures …