Author Archives: Rodney Aist

About Rodney Aist

Rodney Aist, Ph.D. is the course director at St George's College, Jerusalem. Visit him at

‘Come Over and Help Us’: Thanksgiving and the Seal of the Massachusetts Bay Colony

‘Come over and help us!’ The poor, the destitute and the spiritually depraved are beckoning. Please come over. It’s an offer that God-fearing Christians couldn’t turn down. More accurately, a self-issued invitation, a laconic justification with an open ending. Please, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Eating Sushi with Sempo: The Life of Chiune Sugihara

He who Saves A Life, Saves the Entire World (The Talmud) I’m due to travel to Los Angeles in the next couple of weeks to pick up a visa at the Israeli consulate. When I do so, I hope to … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

From Leeds to Little Rock: What Kind of Asian are You?

I was riding in a taxi cab through West Yorkshire earlier this month. It was four in the morning, and I was on my way to the airport to return to Italy. I don’t often take cabs, let alone chat … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Attend to the Orphans: Smiles and Suffering in War-Torn Iraq

Ola Hassan is a dentist living and working in London, England. In March 2013, she traveled for the first time to Iraq, her parents’ native land, on a dental mission with Global Kindness Foundation.  We all get them, even dentists; … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Slaves and Buffalo Soldiers

President Obama’s recent establishment of five new national monuments (March 25, 2013) demonstrates how the creation of historical commemorative landscape is an ongoing cultural and political activity.  Of the five new monuments, two of them have direct intercultural context, specifically … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Agatha Christie and the Ten Little Indians

What’s red on the outside and black on the inside? The Italian edition of Agatha Christie’s 1939 novel, Ten Little Niggers, published in Italy as Dieci piccoli indiani (Ten Little Indians).  Christie’s story, also known as And Then There Were … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Justice Anywhere: In Tribute to Dr Martin Luther King, Jr

Martin Luther King, Jr. famously wrote in his Letter from a Birmingham Jail (April 16, 1963), ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere’. But isn’t the opposite also true? Isn’t justice anywhere also a threat to injustice everywhere – … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Black Saints and Santas

For the next month, white Victorian images of Santa Claus will permeate streets and airwaves around much of the globe. Although the Santa Claus costume for people of color comes complete with a mask in some countries, in other places, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Beauty and the Nose

In sharing ‘news from home’, Leslie, a young Peruvian woman in my Italian language class, recently reported that her sister was recovering from nose surgery. The operation corrected disfiguration sustained in a car accident several years ago, but Leslie went … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sculpture 9841: Johann Trollmann and the Sinti Holocaust

While German Chancellor Angela Merkel opened a permanent memorial to the half-million Roma and Sinti victims of the Nazi Holocaust today in Berlin’s Tiergarten Park, a temporary monument commemorating one single victim of the tragedy, Johann ‘Rukeli’ Trollmann (d. 1944), … Continue reading

Posted in Adolf Witt, Angela Merkel, Berlin, Boxer, Boxing, Germany, Gypsy, Holocaust, Johann Trollmann, Nazi, Roma, Romani, Sinti, Uncategorized | 2 Comments