Michelle Chen


Michelle Chen is editor of CultureStrike Magazine.

What they Carry

The Burdens Syria's Children Bring Across the Frontline
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The children of Syria's civil war take the war with them. Some escape, barely, into hostile neighboring lands. Others remain trapped in the warzone. None are safe. The White House, meanwhile, has sought to ban refugees from Syria and several other Muslim-majority countries, "until our country's representatives can figure out what the hell is going on,” in the words of President Trump.

Grains of Truth

Tracing the Shifting Sands of Migration
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Flood, wave, mass, swarm, tide...The words we use to describe migration and migrants are often colorful, but often deceptive. They reveal perhaps more about how we perceive newcomers than about who “they” are. We use referents of nature to reflect on a social phenomenon--maybe out of respect for the “natural” process of migration (becoming a citizen, too, is called “naturalization” of another sort). But we also wield those metaphors to distance ourselves. The flood becomes a wild, uncontrollable force in the public imagination, beyond the control of states or communities.

All in Peace

Making Space for Prayer
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From the wall to the ban, from the volatile street demonstrations to the rabid frenzies of “patriotism” below the Presidential podium--it seems like the resistance to Trump is looking ever-more like a real-life frontline--a war for public space in a country where the very instruments of democracy feel as if they’re coming under siege.

100 Days of Anti-Trump Resistance

The Urgency of Now, One Day at a Time
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It’s fun to make things, especially when you’re making something beautiful. And especially when you’re making change. And god knows the political stage could use a change of scene. For everyone, these days have been a time of seeing and believing, and understanding that you maybe misunderstood the America you were living in all this time.

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A Message from CultureStrike Executive Director Sham-e-Ali Nayeem

"It is through art and culture that we are able to shift our collective consciousness and transform this grim political climate we find ourselves in. There is a significant cost our communities pay when we are not the ones uplifting our own truths. We have a tremendous opportunity to strengthen our creative alliances and shift cultural narratives that harm us. I invite us all to imagine the kind of world we wish to see and assert the safety and dignity of our communities." Donate Now!