Suggestions of the Week: Where has student activism gone?

Laudy Issa


There’s nothing like a good, old-fashioned protest. In a world of cynicism and lethargy, this week’s suggestions are for those who believe they can enforce socio-political change. Over the past academic year of news coverage, Outlook has seen the desire to cause positive change in the world among many students at the American University of Beirut.


Song of the Week:

Killing in the Name – Rage Against the Machine

Iconic for its heavy guitar riffs and a brutal use of profanity, “Killing in the Name” was written in 1992 about standing up to institutional racism and police brutality. Sadly, this song is still very relevant today, across the world. With an almost explosive song, Rage Against the Machine created an anthem against oppression that feels like a miniature riot of its own, one that builds up from disgruntled obedience to furious defiance.


Movie of the Week:

The Normal Heart – Ryan Murphy

Get your box of tissues out. “The Normal Heart” tells the struggle of gay activists during the 1980s AIDs crisis. With top performances from a cast that includes Mark Ruffalo, Matt Bomer, and Julia Roberts, the movie both provides a heartbreaking account of the struggles within a prominent HIV advocacy group—where gay activists face intense hostility from the public while battling the disease –and provides a historical overview of the rise of the HIV-AIDs crisis in New York.


Album of the Week:

The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan – Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan’s second studio album, largely influenced by his girlfriend at the time, plunged the 20-year-old into the world of political activism and affirmed his allegiance with the civil rights movement. With celebrated compositions like “Blowin’ in the Wind” and “Masters of War,” the album is often described as his first masterpiece. A folk album of creative explosion, “Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan” is a thoughtful and powerful social commentary that also delves into romance and heartbreak.

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