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A City for the Dead: Wien Deals with the Deceased

A City for the Dead: Wien Deals with the Deceased

November 1st is Allerheiligen (All Saints’ Day) when Western Christians honour deceased relatives who (they assume) have made it to heaven. Since the early Middle Ages they’ve adorned family graves with candles and flowers, bringing light and colour to cemeteries darkened by the onset of winter. On this day, Vienna’s Zentralfriedhof is a remarkable sight. […]

A Silent Servus: Peter Alexander (1926-2011)

The beauty of the untouched Austrian scenery. Sky rising mountains with a sugar-like snow topping, grass-green fields, a crystal clear lake and the idyllic hotel-restaurant Weißes Rössl. The clumsy waiter Leopold, a man, undyingly in love but also unworthy of the beautiful owner Josepha Vogelhuber, greets the guests streaming in from near and far. The […]

The Virtual Memorial

Killing time on Facebook, mindlessly clicking everything in sight. My head rolling from one hand to another when supporting elbows grow numb. Spellbound by invitations to play Farmville and Texas Hold’em. Photo albums burst random faces on the screen- smiling, waving, and posing. Crushing waterfalls of images are making me queasy. I return to the […]

In Memoriam: Christoph Schlingensief

It is difficult to write about Christoph Schlingensief in the past tense because he is so alive, not merely on the internet, but in one’s memories. The German director of theater, opera and film, who died on Aug. 21from cancer at the age of 49, will continue to influence so many lives through his energy, […]

Katyń Massacre: Resurfacing

Possibly the greatest Shakespearean tragedy of the decade, the recent passing of Polish president Lech Kaczynski, his wife Maria and most of the Polish cabinet, rekindled an old feeling of dismay all too familiar in Poland. They were trying to land in Smolensk, Russia, to receive an official apology for the Katyń Massacre of 1940 […]

Red Bull’s Crash Landing

Ueli Gegenschatz, a Swiss base jumper sponsored by Red Bull, died on Nov. 11 jumping off the 88 meter high Oerlikon Tower in Zurich. He was taking part in a promotion movie for Red Bull and was caught by a gust of wind causing him to lose control over his parachute and collide with the […]

Farewell to America’s Favorite Radical

“If those in charge of our society – politicians, corporate executives, and owners of press and television – can dominate our ideas, they will be secure in their power. They will not need soldiers patrolling the streets. We will control ourselves.” Surprisingly, these are not the words of Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci, but those of […]

Jewish Cemeteries Gain More Attention

Jewish cemeteries in Austria, many neglected since before World War II will finally receive financial support from the Austrian government, agreed on a majority in parliament on Fri, Jan. 29. Most of Austria’s 63 Jewish cemeteries are in very bad condition. There were 200,000 Jews registered by the Nazis as living in Austria in 1938 […]

Nuclear Scientist’s Death Called Murder

A second autopsy on the body of nuclear scientist Timothy Hampton has raised questions about the original verdict of suicide after a fall from the UN building in Vienna. Dr. Kathrin Yen, of the Ludwig Institute in Graz, who performed the examination, reported evidence that Hampton did not commit suicide as originally claimed by another […]

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