french collaborators

Dean Winchester One Shots

***My fics are not to be saved nor posted on any other sites without my express written permission.***

1. Dean Winchester fluff

2. You are better than that (smut)

3. Look good for you (smut)

4. Things I want us to experience

5. You always make me feel better (smut)

6. Relax Dean (steamy fluff)

7. Daddy’s little angel

8. Dean may care

9. Halloween fun (smut)

10. Closer (smut)

11. Slow and Easy (smut)

12. I’m Here! (Smut)

13. In the heart of the sea

14. Movie Night

15. Control (SMUT)

16. No Right

17. The start of something good

18. Red-Handed (smut)

19. The French Dildo - in collaboration with @nichelle-my-belle and @mysupernaturalfics (smut)

20. The power of fear

21.Changes (smut)

22. Love Bites

23. Wash your hands

24. Running Hot

25. Queen of Hearts

26. Perfect (not actual smut but a bit more than implied too)

27. Starting Fires

28. Putting up a Fight

29. Out in the Rain

30. The Real Thing (Smut)

31. Meaning in my Life

32. Follow your Heart

33. Long Night

34. Stuck with Me

35. Behind Closed Doors (Smut)

36. Pieces of the Heart

37. That Kinda Girl

38. Dark Sorrow

39.  White Christmas

40.  Just Another Monday

41.  Who You Are

42.  Lost and Found

43.  Heathen

44.  Wake Up Call (Smut)

45. You Were The One

46. The Best He Can

47.  Dream Life

48. Free To Be You and Me (Smut)

49. My Reason (Smut)

50. Everything

Alors voilà mon dessin / prompt pour une mini fic m&m’s AU Harry Potter :D

Voilà l'idée que j'avais ^^ “En été, quand il fait trop chaud pour dormir, ils se retrouvent en cachette dans la tour d'astronomie pour se partager des bièraubeurres glacées (et pour faire d'autres choses :P)”

C'est la 1ère fois que je fais une submission alors j'espère que ça va fonctionner (mais du coup je peux pas mettre de tags c'est dommage x))



Merci pour la submission @french-m-and-ms !! :D

J'adore, OMG <3 les détails sont géniaux (genre la chemise transparente de MV ^^). Enfin bref, j'arrête de fangirler deux minutes => voilà la mini fic :  



Cette nuit, Emmanuel a rendez-vous dans la tour d’astronomie avec Manuel pour la troisième fois de suite. En cette fin de mois de juin, la température est très élevée, et les deux élèves ont pris l’habitude de passer une partie de leurs nuits ensemble, à boire des bièraubeurres bien fraîches pour lutter contre la canicule. Personne n’est au courant de leurs petites soirées en tête-à-tête, parce que Manuel cherche à tout prix à éviter que ses amis ne les découvrent. Il a honte de fréquenter Emmanuel, qui non seulement est un sixième année, c’est-à-dire une classe en-dessous de Manuel, mais a de surcroît le malheur d’être à Serpentard. C’est à peine s’il accepte d’être vu en compagnie de ce dernier en pleine journée, même s’ils se contentent de parler de sujets totalement innocents, alors il préférerait certainement mourir plutôt que divulguer qu’Emmanuel et lui se rencontrent en cachette le soir pour boire et discuter… entre autres choses.

Au début, seule une fragile amitié les unissait mais, au fil des mois, leur amitié s’est changée en une relation ambigüe qu’Emmanuel aurait peine à définir avec précision. Ils sont toujours amis – enfin il l’espère bien que Manuel semble parfois ne pas voir les choses sous le même angle – mais leurs actes dépassent bien souvent le cadre de l’amitié, à moins qu’il soit courant pour des amis de passer des heures à s’embrasser et à s’explorer mutuellement jusqu’à atteindre une extase partagée…

Emmanuel arrive le premier au lieu de rendez-vous. Il s’assoit à leur place habituelle et attend nerveusement Manuel tout en contemplant le ciel étoilé, espérant y trouver une forme de réconfort. Bien qu’elle semble similaire aux précédentes, cette nuit n’est pas comme les autres pour Emmanuel. Il a l’intention de parler à Manuel, de lui parler sérieusement, et il ne peut plus reculer : l’année scolaire est presque terminée, Manuel va quitter Poudlard pour travailler au ministère de la magie et Emmanuel passera sa dernière année sans lui. Il doit lui dire ce qu’il a sur le cœur ce soir.

Bientôt, il aperçoit Manuel émerger des escaliers avec un pack de bièraubeurres à la main. Il sourit à Emmanuel et lui demande s’il est là depuis longtemps. Celui-ci ne répond pas immédiatement, entièrement concentré sur la chemise de Manuel, déjà imbibée de transpiration, à travers laquelle il peut voir son torse.

« Emmanuel ? »

« Oh… euh, non, ça doit faire cinq minutes à peine. » Lui répond-il, sortant enfin de sa torpeur. Il rougit légèrement, certain que Manuel a compris où ses yeux étaient rivés.

Manuel s’assoit à côté de lui sans faire de remarque et lui tend une bouteille, dont Emmanuel se saisit avec plaisir.

Comme à l’accoutumée, ils se racontent leur journée et parlent de choses et d’autres. Toutefois, l’atmosphère finit par changer radicalement lorsqu’un peu de Bièraubeurre coule sur le menton de Manuel. Emmanuel suit la trajectoire de la goutte, dont la course se termine sous le col de sa chemise, et il devient incapable d’accorder son attention à quoi que ce soit d’autre, si bien que, quand Manuel reprend la conversation où elle s’est arrêtée, Emmanuel n’écoute plus un mot de ce qu’il raconte. N’y tenant plus, il pose sa bouteille et essuie de son pouce la légère trace luisante que la boisson a laissée sur sa peau.

« Désolé », s’excuse-t-il distraitement, remarquant le regard interrogateur de Manuel.  Il ne retire pas la main de son visage pour autant.  

Manuel lui prend alors la main et dépose un baiser au creux de sa paume. La tendresse contenue dans ce geste, à des années lumières du Manuel froid et distant qu’il croise dans les couloirs du château pendant la journée, pousse Emmanuel à l’embrasser avec fougue. Le moment était parfait pour engager une conversation sérieuse, mais il n’a pas trouvé le courage nécessaire pour aborder un sujet aussi important que celui qu’il veut aborder.

Manuel pose sa bouteille entamée sur la table située juste à côté d’Emmanuel tout en répondant au baiser avec autant de passion.

Emmanuel se retrouve bientôt à califourchon sur Manuel, qui pose alors les mains sur ses hanches. La température, déjà à la limite du supportable, ne fait qu’augmenter, mais Emmanuel ne souhaiterait arrêter pour rien au monde. Il cesse d’embrasser Manuel uniquement pour lui retirer sa cravate, qu’il balance sans cérémonie derrière lui. Puis, Manuel en fait de même avec la sienne, comme s’ils se débarrassaient des maisons et de ce qu’elles représentent. Après tout, c’est en grande partie leur faute s’ils ne se montrent presque jamais ensemble dans la journée. Du moins, Emmanuel préfère rejeter la faute sur le système au lieu d’imaginer que Manuel ne veut rien dire à ses amis parce qu’il a honte de lui.

« Manuel… » Il murmure, encore si proche de ses lèvres qu’il les frôle en bougeant les siennes.

« Mmh »

« Je voudrais qu’on aille jusqu’au bout ce soir. »

Quand il s’est imaginé cette nuit, il pensait d’abord parler à Manuel, puis faire l’amour avec lui, mais il devra se contenter de faire les choses dans le sens inverse, même si ce n’est pas l’idéal. Il n’a que lui-même à blâmer pour ce changement de plans.

Manuel, s’étant écarté légèrement de lui, le regarde avec sérieux.

« Tu es sûr ? »

Emmanuel hoche la tête et caresse les cheveux trempés de sueur de Manuel avant de joindre leurs lèvres à nouveau.

La lenteur avec laquelle ils se déshabillent l'un l'autre, la douceur des caresses de Manuel, la délicatesse avec laquelle il les unit finalement, la façon dont il demande à Emmanuel s’il va bien avant de se remettre en mouvement… tout est si parfait que des larmes naissent dans les yeux d’Emmanuel. Il cache son visage dans le cou de Manuel pour qu’il ne remarque rien, mais c’est peine perdue : lorsque son plaisir atteint son apogée, en même temps que celui de son amant, l’intensité de ce qu’il ressent, aussi bien physiquement qu’émotionnellement, fait redoubler ses larmes, qu’il devient alors impossible de dissimuler.

« Emmanuel, qu’est-ce qui ne va pas ? Je t’ai fait mal ? » Lui demande Manuel, apparemment très inquiet.

« Non, non. Ne t’inquiète pas. C’était parfait. » Répond-il entre deux inspirations fébriles.

« Mais, pourquoi tu pleures ? »

Il pleure justement parce que c’était parfait, mais il juge bon de donner une réponse moins paradoxale :

« Pour rien. »

Puis, il embrasse Manuel, se fichant que ses lèvres aient le goût salé de ses larmes. Par chance, Manuel ne s’en préoccupe pas davantage.

Ils restent un long moment enlacés, en osmose, profitant de l’obscurité et de leur isolement pour faire ce qu’ils ne se permettent pas de faire à la face du monde. Malheureusement, Emmanuel est obligé de briser le silence et leur étreinte, sachant pertinemment qu’il ne lui reste plus beaucoup de temps pour se confier à Manuel.

« Il faut que je te parle. »

Manuel se crispe à l’entente de ces mots.

« Tu veux rompre ? »

La question prend Emmanuel totalement au dépourvu.

« Quoi ?! Mais non… Rompre ? Parce qu’on est en couple ? 

― Eh bien… oui. Enfin, je croyais.

― Mais, on n’en a jamais discuté.

― C’est-à-dire que… je pensais que c’était une espèce d’accord tacite entre nous… Il faut croire que je me trompais.

― Je croyais que tu ne voulais pas qu’on forme un vrai couple parce que je ne suis qu’en sixième année, et que nos maisons sont rivales et que… tu as honte de moi. »

Manuel se passe une main sur le visage, l’air désespéré.

« Je n’arrive pas à croire que tu aies pensé que j’avais honte de toi pendant tout ce temps. J’ai vraiment tout fait de travers, je suis désolé. Je ne voulais pas qu’on nous voie ensemble parce que tes amis me détestent et que je ne voulais pas que tu aies d’ennuis avec eux à cause de moi. Je me fiche que tu sois dans la classe d’en-dessous, ou que tu sois un Serpentard, et je n’ai jamais eu honte de toi. »  

Emmanuel n’en croit pas ses oreilles. Ils sont tous les deux des sombres idiots. Ils ne parlent jamais de leurs sentiments, et voilà ce qui arrive quand on espère que l’autre comprendra sans pour autant lui dire quoi que ce soit de manière explicite : on se retrouve avec un immense malentendu sur les bras.

« Je m’en fiche que mes amis ne t’apprécient pas. Moi je t’aime, et c’est tout ce qui compte. »

Ce n’est pas vraiment comme ça qu’Emmanuel avait prévu d’avouer ses sentiments à Manuel, mais il a senti que c’était le bon moment.

« Je t’aime aussi. » Réplique-t-il en lui caressant la joue.

Ils ont perdu tellement de temps à cause de leur incapacité à communiquer qu’Emmanuel ne peut s’empêcher de ressentir une certaine amertume qui vient se mêler à l’euphorie.

« Sinon, qu’est-ce que tu voulais me dire ? »

― Que je voulais qu’on soit officiellement en couple, et que j’aimerais qu’on continue à se voir même si… même si tu quittes Poudlard à la fin de l’année. 

― Mmh, ça me paraît être un très bon programme.

― Vraiment ?

― Vraiment.

― Donc, si je te demandais de manger avec moi demain dans la grande salle, et de me tenir la main dans le couloir, et de m’embrasser dans le parc après les cours, tu accepterais ?

― Absolument. Cependant, j’ai une petite proposition à te faire. Si on remettait plutôt ça à après-demain ? Demain, on pourrait juste échanger nos cravates et attendre de voir combien de temps tout le monde met à comprendre ce qui se passe. Je trouve que ça pourrait être amusant.

― Et dire que c’est moi le Serpentard dans cette relation…

― Si je n’ai plus le droit de faire une blague parce que je suis un Gryffondor, je veux bien changer de maison immédiatement. 

― Tiens donc. Tu es sûr que ce ne serait pas un prétexte pour rejoindre ton merveilleux petit ami ? demande Emmanuel avec un sourire taquin.

― Il se pourrait que ça entre en ligne de compte, admet Manuel en lui rendant son sourire. »

Pour une fois, ils passent toute la nuit dans la tour d’astronomie et ne regagnent leurs dortoirs respectifs qu’au petit matin, chacun emportant la cravate de l’autre. La journée promet d’être mouvementée, autant voire plus que la nuit qu’ils viennent de passer ensemble.



Alors c'est un peu guimauve, mais j'étais étonnamment d'humeur ^^ j'espère que ça te va ;) merci beaucoup pour cette petite collaboration très sympathique (qui m'a permis d'avoir un de tes fanarts en exclusivité en plus, I feel blessed =P).

5 Reasons To Be Optimistic About the French Election

Tomorrow, on May 7th, the French people will elect their new president. Their two choices are Emmanuel Macron, a moderate, soft-spoken banker who is most notable for marrying his own schoolteacher; and Marine Le Pen, a horrible morass of vile xenophobia. The singular repulsiveness of Le Pen, and the results of the Brexit referendum and the Trump victory have people terrified that the forces of evil will once again prevail-especially considering that Russian interference in the French election eerily mirrors the interference in the American election. This piece is not to fill you with false confidence, but to talk those of you on the verge of a panic attack into resting a little easier. Here are five reasons why Le Pen may soon be relegated to yelling at vaguely Muslim-shaped clouds.

1. Macron has a gargantuan lead. “But they said Hillary couldn’t lose either!” No, listen: Macron’s lead right now is four times larger than Hillary’s lead over Trump at its highest point. It would take an unprecedented polling error to give Le Pen a victory, and French polls have been historically been very accurate.

2. The French electoral system is much less complicated than America’s. In America, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by 3 million votes; however, since they were mostly congregated in urban areas, the electoral college (and the presidency) went to Trump. In France, there is no electoral college-it is strictly one person, one vote.

3. Russian troll attempts at influencing the election are failing miserably (and hilariously). In America, hacks carried out by Russia against Hillary and the DNC (possibly coordinated with the Trump campaign) stirred up a frenzy, abetted by Russian trolls pretending to be American Trump supporters while spreading disinformation. They’re trying something similar in France, but with notably less success. Foreign trolls pretending to be French Le Pen supporters regularly post on French social media, but they either do so in English or in laughably bad French. Russia hacked Macron’s emails, just like with Hillary, and released them yesterday. However, it soon became apparent that there was absolutely nothing interesting contained within them (he is a banker, after all). Trolls tried to drum up narratives about insurance fraud and colluding with paid protestors, but they were roundly mocked for being so transparent.

4. Le Pen is loathed in France. Marine Le Pen is not the first far-right nationalist to make a mark on French politics. Her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, was the founder of the Front National, a fringe right-wing political party founded from the remnants of French Nazi collaborators. He was a perennial candidate for president, and each time was regarded with near-universal disgust and contempt. He made it to the runoff once-his opponent refused to debate him, and beat him in a historic landslide. Le Pen has tried to rehabilitate the party’s image, but hasn’t been met with much success, since…

5. The French saw what happened in America, and are taking this very seriously. In the debate a few days ago, Le Pen used many of the same tactics Trump used in debate. She regarded Macron with barely-concealed contempt. She did her usual xenophobic fear-mongering. She lobbed unfounded accusations of offshore financial dealings. She did a weird, inexplicable wavey-arm dance to taunt him. When the polls came in, 66% of the audience believed that Macron soundly beat her in the debate, regarding her rhetoric as ugly and hateful. The third and fifth place finishers in the election that preceded the runoff immediately threw their support behind Macron. The French intelligence agencies are monitoring Le Pen’s ties to Russia. Overall, it’s very different from the “but her emails” atmosphere in America.

I’m not saying there’s nothing to worry about-the very fact that Le Pen got this far is worth worrying about, as well as what will happen when she inevitably tries again. But if you’re expecting another shocker like Brexit or Trump, you may be pleasantly surprised.

A French woman accused of collaborating with the occupying German forces is escorted by a member of the French Resistance to where she will be interrogated and then have her head shaved as an act of public humiliation. August, 1944.

fuckyeahfrenchsongs.tumblr.com
French songs, analyzed
Welcome to Fuck yeah french songs! FYFS is a blog dedicated to translating and giving a meaning to...

Fuck Yeah French Songs! est un blog collaboratif fondé par la volonté de @theblackwook et moi pour vous fournir des traductions ainsi que des analyses de chansons françaises en anglais. Si vous connaissez une chanson originale écrite en français (peu importe la nationalité de son auteur.e), vous pouvez nous la suggérer!

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Fuck Yeah French Songs! is a collaborative blog founded by @theblackwook and me, as a way to share french music to an english-speaking audience! If you know any song written in french (no matter what the nationality of the original songwriter is), you can suggest it to us and we’ll work on a translation/analysis of it!

The French Brand Everyone’s Talking About

Shop Madewell’s cool new collaboration

The French spirit, or je ne sais quoi, is the essence of the muted, minimalist style that has taken the fashion world by storm in recent years. Parisian designer Morgane Sézalory started her line Sézane years after selling vintage finds online, modeling it after the pared down, individualized look that French girls do so well. And who better to design a line of chic, cool-girl clothing than a Parisian herself. Now, Morgane has brought her designs stateside in an exclusive collection for Madewell, another go-to for great basics. She combined New Yorkers’ urban style with French effortlessness, and voila - the sought-after wardrobe for girls who don’t follow trends. While the highly popular “La Superbe” sweatshirt is sold out online, there are plenty of other great options to choose from.

Shop Sézane for Madewell below! 

Madewell et SÉzane Tweed Coat

Madewell et SÉzane® Haspen Sweater

Madewell et SÉzane® Lace Shiftdress

Madewell et SÉzane® Thelma Shiftdress

Madewell et SÉzane Silk Tee

Madewell et SÉzane Silk Tee in Bow Print

Madewell et SÉzane® Crop Trousers

Madewell et SÉzane Front-Tie Boots

Madewell et SÉzane Ankle-Wrap Boots

Madewell et SÉzane® Nola Satchel

Madewell et SÉzane® Nola Clutch

Madewell et SÉzane® Textured Scarf

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July 23rd 1951: Philippe Pétain dies

On this day in 1951, French military officer and former head of the Vichy government, Philippe Pétain, died aged 95. Born to a farming family in 1856, he joined the French army in 1876 and rose through the ranks slowly in the years before World War One. However, his successes in the war catapulted him to national fame. Pétain’s most famous victory was leading the defense of Verdun, which made him a national hero in France and resulted in his becoming marshal of France in 1918. In the postwar years he held a number of political offices, finally being appointed vice premier in 1940 as France faced attack from Nazi Germany. Pétain called for an armistice, which ceded large parts of France (including Paris) to the Nazis. Pétain, as ‘chief of state’, ruled the remainder of the country from Vichy; the authoritarian Vichy government collaborated with Germany, even introducing anti-Semitic legislation banning Jews from certain professions. Pétain himself, though indeed reactionary, favoured neutrality over even closer collaboration, trying to maintain relations with the Allies. As the war progressed, Pétain’s influence waned and French resistance mounted against Vichy collaboration, and he was taken to Germany when the Allies landed in France. After the end of the war, with France free from German rule, the ‘hero fo Verdun’ was tried and condemned to death for treason. His sentence was commuted to life in solitary confinement, and Pétain remained imprisoned in a fortress on the Île d’Yeu until his death in 1951.

French women accused of collaborating with the Germans have their heads shaved by a mob, are stripped naked, covered in tar, and forced to give the Nazi salute for the camera.  This was a common punishment for French, Belgian, and Dutch women who were accused of having sex with or collaborating with German occupying forces after World War II. Men who were accused of being collaborators were typically executed.

Watch on forgottenanimation.tumblr.com

KIRIKOU AND THE SORCERESS (1998)

a 1998 traditional animation feature film written and directed by Michel Ocelot. Drawn from elements of West African folk tales, it depicts how a newborn boy, Kirikou, saves his village from the evil witch Karaba. The film was originally released on December 9, 1998. It is a co-production between companies inFrance (Exposure, France 3 Cinema, Les Armateurs, Monipoly, Odec Kid Cartoons), Belgium (Radio-Television Belge) and Luxembourg (Studio O, Trans Europe Film) and animated at Rija Films’ studio in Latvia and Studio Exist in Hungary.

Why was it special?: GAVE PROMINENCE TO A CRIMINALLY UNDERUSED SOURCE OF MATERIAL

Ohh hell to the yes, this is another piece of animation that this month was absolutely made for. Not only that but this is one of those artsy movies that the snooty animation fans out there go absolutely gaga for.  It’s artsy in that the backgrounds are very catching, the character designs are unique and reflective of the setting the movie takes place in, and the presentation as a whole is just an absolute feast for the senses.

Unlike most artsy films that are content to show off the art and animation and not much more, this is one of the rare exceptions that manages to strike a good balance between telling a story and showing off the art.

Now, I know what some of you are thinking, being that this is here and that it’s me talking about it you’re probably thinking, “he must have some sort of complain. He always has a complaint about everything.” Normally, I’d like to find a good balance between good and bad aspects, mostly bad because those are the funnest to make fun of but for once, I’ve got nothing but praise to give.

This 70 minute animated collaboration between French, Belgian, and Luxembourg studios that mixes many West African folk tales is positively special. I might be a little blinded by the fact that while I do like this movie very much, I also quite like what it represents.

I don’t have to tell you that there is a criminal lack of representation of African centric stories. With all the different countries, cultures, languages, cities, and tribes, many of us barely know anything about Africa, the continent, as a whole, let alone the stories, legends, myths, and tales.


This movie just gets me thinking that there are hundreds, if not thousands -maybe even more than that- of stories that we’ve never seen told before, in animation or any medium. Some of those stories have never even been written down, let alone released on a worldwide scale. For someone like me who loves writing, and loves to read, this just tickles my fancy in a way that would make me sound even more nerdy if I proceeded to over-explain it.

I gotta wrap this up.

It’s most definitely a must-see movie, and you’re cheating yourself if you don’t see it.

TRIVIA

  • the movie was so successful that it was followed by Kirikou et les bêtes sauvages, released in 2005, and adapted into a stage musical, Kirikou et Karaba, first performed in 2007. Another followup, Kirikou et les hommes et les femmes, was released in late 2012 
  • the film has been dubbed in French, English, Japanese, and Swahili 
  • The film contains several instances of female nudity, and male nudity to a lesser extent, as would be the norm in pre-colonial Africa. This was controversial enough in the US to delay the film’s release there until 2002.

CLOSING THOUGHTS

I’ve said all that needs to be said.

The entire movie is available on youtube.

You know what to do.

Perversions délicates | 1

Spies of Warsaw / A passionate Woman Xover

Pairing: Jean-François Mercier x Betty

Rating: Adult

Word count: 4800

Beta: the fabulous Foxy

Summary:  What can a working-class girl from Leeds and a noble French colonel find in each other? Meeting Jean-François forces Betty to reconsider who she is and the way she lives her life. As her feelings for him grow, so will her desire for freedom and control over her own life, but that’s not so easy to get for a married woman in the 1940s.

Warnings: there’s a sex scene between Betty and her husband that may be unpleasant for some people. It’s consensual but kind of sad. Alcohol and smoking. Infidelity. Spoilers for both shows.

A/N: If you aren’t familiar with the characters, check out this introductory post

Leeds, 1947

Betty wasn’t that kind of woman.

She wasn’t the kind of woman who flirted and kissed strangers. She wasn’t the kind of woman who cheated on her husband. She didn’t even drink or smoke, for crying out loud.

Craze was different, you see. The exception. He loved her and she loved him and that was that.

It wasn’t about pride and lust or other sinful things.

Although, if she really thought about it… Well, it wouldn’t change the fact that he was dead and it was her fault.

When she had the idea to find work around town, she didn’t think it would force her to reconsider both the kind of woman she was and her true feelings for Craze. On the contrary, it was all part of her penance. She thought the extra money would help pay for the house and somehow make up for her infidelity. Even if her husband, Donald, wasn’t aware of her affair, her work might weigh in some sort of cosmic balance.

Keep reading

Kus!#15" by various artists

I see a lot of art books from a lot of major publishers, a lot of graphic novels and children’s books, but I don’t think I’ve been as thrilled and excited by any of it so much as “Kus!” (pronounced “koosh!”), this mini-digest format anthology from Latvia, with its beautiful, raw, often experimental work, and just the tip of the iceberg in regard to the group’s publishing efforts, as well as its exhibitions and workshops.

The 15th issue uses cats as a unifying topic, but the results are varied and challenging. Opening with Riga artist Martin Zutis’ graphically delightful “Inner Voice,” which uses slightly altered repetitive layouts of cats to create a chaotic psychological representation of a cat’s mind, the issue moves into the comic strip as reference book effort by Latvian artist Dace Sietina, which transforms the narrative of Teddy the cat into a collection of artful diagrams and data.

These really set the tone for the volume, though nothing from that point on is ever predictable.

Among the highlights: Illustrator Leo Quievreux and collage artist Freedox, two French artists, collaborate on “Les Failles de Mr. Zeng,” a cryptic and abstract bombast of dys topian psychedelia involving a cat; Latvian artist Davis Ozols’ “Lost and Found” is a beautifully primitive illustrated fable about searching and finding that pulls from children’s books; Reinis Petersons’ “7 Deadly Sins for 9 Lives and Beyond” is a simple primer in the worst of existence as experienced through cats, wrought in simple black-and-white med itations; and Polish artist Maria Ines Gul’s visual poem, “Love cats,” imagines falling in love and becoming a pet as the antidote to loneliness.

Though technically advertised as “comics,” the work is of a sophistication that I think the designation not only limits the appeal of the work, but also the possible venues. This would be more appropriately termed “sequential art,” in that the artwork is more than one picture hanging on the wall.

It is a series, and narrative is as central to them as some of the best installations, and with the same desire not to dictate what the creator brings to the piece, rather letting the viewer take it to heart and do the work.

There’s nothing in here, or any of the volumes I have seen, that would be out of place as gallery art, offering sequence as another dimension to viewing.

Issues of Kus can be ordered online at komikss.lv.

Unification of Hispaniola

Anonymous said:
What are your thoughts on the Haitian unification of both Haiti and Santo Domingo under Boyer? Why did it end in 1844?


Source: Wikipedia

Hello, and sorry for the late response. What you’re asking here is two separate questions, the former pertaining somewhat to opinion and the latter a complex but more historically-grounded question. The second question has been answered differently depending on ideological or nationalist biases. In short, the questions asked are quite complex and difficult to answer succinctly in a blog. That said, here is an attempt to answer those questions.

On the subject of Haitian unification of the island, it is important to remember Haiti’s precarious status in terms of international relations with European powers. Remember, Haiti was the sole independent state in the Caribbean, and the only place where slavery was abolished. France did not recognize Haitian sovereignty until after 1825, so various Haitian heads of state from Dessalines to Boyer supported large standing armies and built fortifications. Fearing an impending French invasion from the East, Haitian governments sought security by establishing control over the East.

Really, one can trace this back to Toussaint Louverture’s position as governor-general of Saint Domingue. Taking the East in 1801 as part of the Treaty of Basel, in which Spain ceded Santo Domingo to France in 1797, Toussaint Louverture promoted his brother, Paul, as the general overseeing the East. During the Leclerc Expedition, if Toussaint’s letters had not been intercepted, Paul Louverture would not have given Santo Domingo the the French forces, and the East could have occupied a greater role in the final years of the Haitian Revolution. Instead, what happened led to French control of Santo Domingo from 1801-1809, a situation that undoubtedly threatened Haitian sovereignty. Restoring slavery, organizing raids on Haitian territory, and France’s own reluctance to officially recognize Haitian independence likely fueled the 1805 campaign against the East.

Failing to defeat the French forces, Dessalines’s generals fled westwards, back to Haiti. Pro-slavery voices whose lost their wealth in Saint Domingue maintained pressure on Paris to reconquer Haiti, receive reparations for financial losses during the Haitian Revolution, and prolonging France’s refusal to establish diplomatic relations with Haiti. One must recall that, because of France’s lack of recognition for Haitian independence, Haiti was, in the eyes of the Western powers, a wayward colony of France they could not formally establish relations with. Thus, one can understand why certain sectors of the Haitian government were eager to establish relations with France while also protecting their sovereignty from fears and rumors of French or other slaveholding powers.

After the failure of the 1805 campaign, Boyer’s forces entered what is now the Dominican Republic in 1822, invited by pro-Haiti groups. The ephemeral independence declared by José Núñez de Cáceres was limited to creoles in Santo Domingo, whereas support for unification with Haiti could be found among the enslaved population, people of color, and whites who favored the political stability and markets of Haiti. Upon arrival in Santo Domingo, Boyer, accompanied by 10,000 Haitian troops, received the keys to the city of Santo Domingo by Nunez de Caceres.

Boyer’s government abolished slavery, freeing the 10,000-20,000 slaves in the East (following the abolitionist decree of Toussaint Louverture in 1801 that had already emancipated slaves), integrated the East into Haiti’s militarized political system, and attempted to change the land tenure system of the east while also favoring the burgeoning tobacco economy in the Cibao. Boyer appointed Borgella and Carrié, Haitian generals, as officials in charge of the East, and representatives from various towns across the East represented their constituencies in the legislative bodies of Port-au-Prince. Land was confiscated from the Catholic Church (the Vatican did not officially recognize Haiti until the Geffrard administration) while subaltern groups actually gained land. Many white elites preferred to leave Santo Domingo than to remain under Haitian rule, yet a surprisingly high number of them remained.

What sparked resistance to Boyer’s regime after the initial support or acceptance was the attempt to change the poorly organized system of land tenure, the terrenos comuneros. Instead of a formally, organized system of land in the East, the campesino population often owned lands communally without legal title. Boyer’s administration sought, multiple times with legislation, to impose formal, legal titles to land, which was impossible to enforce. Favoring the Napoleonic Code and established, organized land tenure, Boyer’s regime also sought to restore the declining plantation system with estates, a supply of workers, and attempts to reimpose a coercive labor system.

The Code Rural, usually seen as only applying to Haiti, was part of Boyer’s government’s attempts to increase revenues by focusing on plantations in order to pay France for the horrendous 1825 Treaty, in which Haiti offered France an indemnity and a favorable trade deal in exchange for full diplomatic relations. Boyer’s government tried to raise taxes, control the rural population’s labor, and emphasize sugar and coffee plantations in order to meet the rising debts. Boyer’s government also used French as the official language, the closing of the University of Santo Domingo transpired under Haitian rule, and the loss of power of the Catholic Church offended local sensibilities.

Boyer’s regime also promoted members of the old Spanish political elite to positions of leadership over Creole groups previously excluded from the Spanish colonial state. Borgella, Carrie, and other Haitian officials or military leaders therefore faced growing opposition from Creole whites and mulattos pursuing more power or autonomy. One must keep in mind that Boyer’s regime, to quote Charles Mackenzie, was a militarized dictatorship in republican form, thus residents of the East who opposed Boyer joined in political conspiracies in Haiti that sought an overthrow to Boyer.

The growing liberal opposition within Haiti that opposed Boyer, his despotic ways of challenging the press and legislators, joined with the conspirators like Juan Pablo Duarte and the Trinitarios. Before long, after the 1843 bloodless (well, mostly bloodless) overthrow of Boyer, the coalition fell apart. Hérard became more authoritarian despite the liberal pretenses of the Haitian opposition. The pro-independence voices in the East became stronger, and by 1844 a series of battles were waged, leading to secession from Haiti.

As Silvio Torres-Saillant reminds us, it is interesting that a revolt was staged in 1845, the year of Dominican independence, by a black general. The Trinitarios and pro-independence voices were forced to take anti-slavery and anti-racist stances by the Afro-Dominican population, a legacy of the Haitian unification project. In addition, like Haiti, the Dominicans extended offers of citizenship and ‘free soil’ principles, attracting runaway slaves from Puerto Rico. Moreover, the legal codes of the Dominican Republic likewise adopted the Napoleonic Code. Frank Moya Pons summarizes the legacy of the Haitian unification as being, in large, a moment of social advances for people of African descent as well as the growth of the peasantry.

In summation, Haitian unification proceeded from a series of questions on national security and territorial integrity, from the days of the Haitian Revolution and fears of French invasion post-1804. The underpopulated East was perceived as an easy avenue through which France or other powers could threaten Haitian sovereignty. In the East, some local elites and people of African descent saw union with Haiti as offering tangible social and economic benefits, one they did not see as forthcoming from the short-lived independence proclaimed in 1821. Enslaved people were granted liberty, gained access to land, or found success in the large Haitian military as a path to wealth or power.

That it failed, after 22 years, is more a result of the generally shared oppression imposed by Boyer on both sides of the island. Boyer’s regime endeavored to limit the proliferation of peasant farming for a period, excluded the majority of the population on both sides of the island from formal political power or representation, entered into a horribly unpopular treaty with France, and abused his power. Over 20 years of this  naturally led to opposition from both sides of the island, culminating in a change in regimes in Port-au-Prince and pro-independence groups winning favor to form a new state in 1844.

The importance of Dominican stability and independence continued to linger in Haitian political thought. Soulouque and successive Haitian governments tried to form a federation with Dominicans, and Haitians aided Dominican nationalists against Spain and the annexationists. So, Haitian “imperialism” in relation to the DR is actually quite complex and often rooted in defending Haiti from potential imperialist powers who may use the East as a foothold.

It is also important to remember that national identities are fluid. Some 'Haitians’ who settled in the East chose to remain there after 1844, becoming Dominican. Similarly, 'Dominicans’ sometimes became Haitians through marriage, migration, or political loyalty. The case of Jose Campos de Tavarez, for example, is enlightening. A mulatto and former slave from the Cibao, he chose to side with Haiti and served various Haitian governments. National identities are necessarily complex, shifting states of being, a point that is often neglected when discussing Haitian-Dominican relations.

Further Reading

Johnson, Sara E. The Fear of French Negroes: Transcolonial Collaboration in the Revolutionary Americas.

Matibag, Eugenio. Haitian-Dominican Counterpoint Nation, State, and Race on Hispaniola. New York: Palgrave, 2003.

Miguel, Pedro Luis. The Imagined Island History, Identity, & Utopia in Hispaniola. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2005.

Pons, Frank. The Dominican Republic: A National History. New Rochelle, N.Y.: Hispaniola Books, 1995.

Roorda, Eric, Lauren Derby, and Raymundo Gonzalez (eds). The Dominican Republic Reader: History, Culture, Politics.

Torres-Saillant, Silvio. “Introduction to Dominican Blackness,” Dominican Studies Working Papers Series, No.1. New York: CUNY Dominican Studies Institute, 1999.

Turits, Richard Lee. Foundations of Despotism: Peasants, the Trujillo Regime, and Modernity in Dominican History. Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 2003.

Australian artists are winning global fans thanks to popular playlists. And Taylor Swift.

AUSTRALIAN singer Emmi had been couch-surfing around the world, writing tunes for other artists when one of her own recordings caught the ear of that influential hit-maker Taylor Swift.

After Swift included Emmi’s song Sleep On It on her New Songs That Will Make Your Life More Awesome playlist last year, it changed the London-based artist’s life.

The dancer, actor and singer suddenly found her song on everyone else’s playlists after Swift’s post which also spruiked tunes from other up-and-comers including Alessia Cara, Kehlani and Phoebe Ryan.

“My music, including my first single My Kinda Swag, seemed to really resonate with the US and I was getting featured on playlists,” Emmi said.

“Sleep On It ended up on this one called It Hurts Sometimes My Broken Heart, right next to an Adele track.

“When Taylor included it, I landed on so many other playlists, people who probably would not have given me the time of day before now knew who I was — even though she spelt my name wrong, which I loved. I wondered if I should change it to her spelling.”

Vera Blue is No. 2 on the charts thanks to collaborating with rapper Illy while her own tunes attract more than one million listeners a month. Picture: Tim Hunter.
Vera Blue is No. 2 on the charts thanks to collaborating with rapper Illy while her own tunes attract more than one million listeners a month. Picture: Tim Hunter.Source:News Corp Australia

Emmi’s fractured pop song scored more than one million likes on Instagram and landed in the top 10 of Spotify’s viral charts.

Music fans are increasingly turning to playlists to discover their next favourite artist and consequently influencing the charts and record label signings.

Spotify are vigorously lobbied by the major labels to feature their wares on the platform’s most popular playlists which include Just Chill and Indie Mix Tape, are heavy with local artists and have tens of thousands of followers.

The “editors” of their genre and mood playlists proactively promote the new tunes of independent and unsigned artists, often contacting the bands or their management to submit their track for streaming on the site.

Spotify can manipulate the attention of music fans by moving a track that is getting noticed up the order of the playlist.

And they will demote a track or move it to a different playlist if it gets too many skips.

Spotify’s Music Editor Alicia Sbrugnera said they listen to at least a 30-second snippet on every new song released each week to choose which tracks to feature to their audience.

She then helps promote the more popular tracks to international editors who are on the hunt for buzzworthy music from Australia and New Zealand thanks to the phenomenal successes of Lorde, Tame Impala, Sia and Vance Joy, another artist who benefited from a Taylor Swift shoutout.

Melbourne electronic pop duo Kllo booked shows in Europe and US after going viral on Spotify.

Melbourne electronic pop duo Kllo booked shows in Europe and US after going viral on Spotify. Picture: Supplied.Source:Supplied

“The international editors think Australia and New Zealand have the most exciting music coming out because they regard us as having one of the healthiest scenes in the world right now and they get incredibly vibed by the new tracks,” she said.

The biggest consumers of new music tend to be in the 18 to 24 years demographic, fans who also seek out fresh tunes via SoundCloud, Triple J’s Unearthed, Apple Music, Bandcamp and Youtube.

“They are the ones who tend to hunt out the most new music and save it to their own playlists,” Sbrugnera said.

Other local artists who have scored playlist-assisted boosts to their fan bases included Melbourne electro-pop duo Kllo, indie pop sensation Vera Blue and blue-eyed soul teen Joel Adams.

Kllo has had more than 10 million streams, most of them from America, with their latest single Bolide scoring 3.5 million listens in just over a month. Their online success has helped them to book tours in Europe and the US.

Vera Blue now has more than one million active listeners since the songs from her Fingertips EP migrated to Spotify playlists in UK, Germany, Canada and the US.

Teen singer songwriter Joel Adams has had more than 92 streams for his song Please Don’t Go. Picture Rohan Kelly.
Teen singer songwriter Joel Adams has had more than 92 streams for his song Please Don’t Go. Picture Rohan Kelly.Source:News Corp Australia

And Joel Adams found global buzz when a British editor picked his track Please Don’t Go for a pop playlist. It has now reached a phenomenal 92 million streams.

Meanwhile Emmi is landing on the radar of British tastemakers courtesy of her singles, My Kinda Swag, Sleep On It and the upcoming You Said You Loved Me, as well her collaboration with French DJ Feder on the track Blind, which has had more than 20 million streams.

“I like to tell stories and music is my biggest passion but being a dancer, I can choreograph my own videos with ideas that are quite thespian because of my acting background,” Emmi said.

“I’ve probably written thousands of songs by now but I feel I am yet to write my masterpiece and I hope I will always feel like that.”

And she remains forever grateful to Swift for including her on that viral playlist.