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Cooking with the Enemy

Artist Michael Rakowitz brings Arab-Jewish culture, and all its current political implications, to the forefront in his Enemy Kitchen, a culinary intervention.

Michael Rakowitz serving food out of his Enemy Kitchen truck.

For seven days last year, the words emblazoned on the glass of a Dubai storefront read “Cuisine of an Absent Tribe” in both English and Arabic. Across, in italics, was another haunting phrase: “You are eating a dying language from a plate of a ghost.” Inside, the first Arab-Jewish restaurant in the Middle East in more than 80 years served a menu of Iraqi-Jewish cuisine to more than 50 diners each day, and disappeared after just a week. This was Dar Al Sulh, the pop-up restaurant-cum-art project of artist Michael Rakowitz, who curated the menu and cooked the food with recipes from his Iraqi-Jewish mother’s kitchen.

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Whether It's Gingrich or Beavis, We All Miss the '90s

The perplexing momentum behind Newt Gingrich may have to do more with nostalgia than anything else.


Everyone is sure the momentum behind Newt Gingrich's recent endorsements and sudden rise in the polls won't last. He's scandalous, he's mean, he's broke. He's not Romney. He's not conservative enough. He's associated with that universally hated entity, Congress. Yet there's a perplexing amount of fervor surrounding the former Speaker of the House. Could it be that we just miss the '90s?

Culturally, the pining is in full force. People are celebrating the 20th anniversary of Thelma and Louise and Nevermind. The feminist punk movement Riot Grrrl is enjoying a revival. Beavis and Butthead is back on the air. Nickelodeon plays classics like Doug and Salute Your Shorts on their new programming block, "The 90s Are All That." Jane Pratt is back, too, and her fairy goddaughter, Tavi Gevinson, adores everything from Twin Peaks to Bikini Kill. Even your favorite 90s lesbians are dating. Some have argued that '90s nostalgia has defined a generation in need of an identity. I say it's a way to crawl back into the womb.

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Intermission: MTV Explains the Internet in 1995

MTV's Kurt Loder reported on a "big deal technological fad" in 1995. Some of his wisdom still rings true.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FmboEjwJwFU&feature=player_embedded

Nineties nostalgia is in full force this summer. GOOD ran a Now and Then series, Nickelodeon brought back our childhood shows with The 90s Are All That, and, as of yesterday, an early news report about the Internet has gone viral. This video features Kurt Loder interviewing people like Sandra Bullock, Coolio and "cyberjournalists," all explaining how this "big deal technological fad" is infiltrating our culture. The report even plays a clip of The Net: "We're sitting on the most perfect beach in the world, and all we can think about is 'Where can I hook up my modem?'" (Little did they know that this sentence would later sum up about 90 percent of our summer beach experiences.)

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