Sunday, June 29, 2008

Fun and Learning at the New York Times

It started when I went to the New York Times website and saw the headline "When Ambassadors Had Rhythym" underneath a picture of Louis Armstrong playing his trumpet in the middle of a mob in Cairo. It was a feature about a soon-to-open photography exhibit about how the government used jazz musicians as ambassadors to improve the world's view of America during the Cold War.

Reading the article, not only did I have this huge sense of "Wow, I'm really learning something new today," but I was appalled by how our government used race in such a blatant way for their own benefit while at the same time denying rights to all. (And at the same time I wondered why I'm still capable of becoming appalled at such facts.)

This article had a slide show to accompany it, which was fantastic. Seeing the slide show made me want to travel to D.C. just to see the exhibit “Jam Session: America’s Jazz Ambassadors Embrace the World." You can check it out here.

Of course, at the end of the slide show, the NY Times always teases you with a list of other slide shows they have, so I end up sitting at the computer for an additional 30 minutes just looking at the pictures. Though in a completely separate vein, another interesting one was Book Review's Booty. My favorite part is their plans for J.M. Coetzee.

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