Articles in English

Why does Tunisia Still Criminalize Homosexuality?

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While Tunisia has taken meaningful steps towards protecting civil and political rights, the country’s LGBTIQ community still faces numerous forms of systemic discrimination and stigmatization.

By Ramy Khouili, Daniel Levine-Spound

Toward a Global Treaty on Plastic Waste

Plastic pollution is a defining problem of our time - and one entirely of our own making. But how do we solve it? This article proposes a possible solution: a comprehensive, binding, and forward-looking global plastics treaty.

By Lili Fuhr

“We’ll always have Paris”

At the UN’s COP 22 climate conference in Marrakech, the international community closed ranks despite (or perhaps because of?) the election of Donald Trump as the next U.S. president. Thanks to its swift ratification by currently more than 110 countries, negotiations on the technical implementation of the Paris Agreement could begin. The pace must increase significantly, however, if the 1.5°C limit is still to be met.

By Lili Fuhr, Liane Schalatek, Simon Ilse
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About Heinrich Böll

Heinrich BöllCreator: Toni Richter. More about Heinrich Böll

Heinrich Böll is one of the most important and best-known writers of the Federal Republic of Germany. "Bound by the times and my contemporaries, to what my generation has lived through, experienced, seen, and heard," as he himself wrote, he was the critical chronicler of Germany’s history at mid-century.

He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature for his novels and short stories in 1972.

The courage to stand up for one's beliefs; encouragement to meddle in public affairs; and unconditional activism in support of dignity and human rights were characteristics of the writer Heinrich Böll. The Foundation is committed to that tradition.

Publications

Perspectives #14 - Minorities Beyond Ethnic and Religious Divides

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Put ‘Minorities in the Middle East’ into any search engine and a huge volume of articles are displayed insinuating that ethnic, tribal, family and sectarian affiliations are the only relevant factors needed to aid an understanding of the politics and societies of the Maghreb and Mashreq. Be it the often praised ‘mosaic’ of multi-ethnic and multi-religious societies, or the explanation and anticipation of actual and potential conflicts in the Middle East, that are shaped by ethnic, tribal or confessional affiliations, the reading has a flavour of exoticism and orientalism. So for this issue of Perspectives, we decided to ask authors in a broader sense about minority-majority relationships that can, but do not necessarily have to, tackle ethnic or confessional subjects.

Civil society under pressure – shrinking – closing – no space

A disconcerting trend has been perceptible for quite some time. Governments across all continents – irrespective of their political orientation – are taking drastic action against civil society actors: against non-governmental organizations, social and ecological activists, women’s rights activists and human rights advocates. The space for actors who are critical of government policies, who call for democracy and human rights, who take an active stand against large-scale projects, and who protest against social injustice, land grabbing and environmental degradation is shrinking.

Perspectives #13 - 'What's stirring? The region's politics dished out'

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Countless combinations of tastes and textures shape the rich culinary landscape of the region. Bridging cultural differences and political rifts, food is a common thread for many in the Arabic speaking world. It is an essential part of a nation’s identity and sophisticated recipes are almost an issue of national pride: although most mouth-watering dishes are often the result of a long history of international migration of ingredients.

Karem Yehia: No dreams for Egypt’s working class

Egypt first declared May 1 an official holiday 50 years ago. That same year, on May 1, 1964, three workers were born — Ahmed Mahmoud from the Public Transportation Authority, Ali Aref from the Steam Boilers and Hesham Abu Zaid from the Tanta Flax factory.