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In the French Language, Steps Forward and Back for Women

The fight to make the French language kinder to women took steps forward, and back, this week.   Warning that the well-being of France and its future are at stake, the government banned the use in schools of a method increasingly used by some French speakers to make the language more inclusive by feminizing some words.     Specifically, the education minister’s decree targets what is arguably the most contested and politicized letter in the French language — “e.” Simply put, “e” is the language’s feminine letter, used in feminine …


Netflix Series Signals Racial Breakthrough in Italian TV

The Netflix series “Zero,” which premiered globally last month, is the first Italian TV production to feature a predominantly Black cast, a bright spot in an otherwise bleak Italian television landscape where the persistent use of racist language and imagery is sparking new protests.   Even as “Zero” creates a breakthrough in Italian TV history, on private networks, comedy teams are asserting their right to use racial slurs and make slanty-eye gestures as satire. The main state broadcaster RAI is under fire for attempting to censor an Italian rapper’s remarks …


Pfizer, BioNTech to Donate Coronavirus Vaccine to Olympians

Pfizer and BioNTech will donate their COVID-19 vaccine to athletes training for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics, the International Olympic Committee said Thursday. Doses are expected to be delivered later this month, which would be in time for the athletes to be fully immunized for the games, starting July 23. “We are inviting the athletes and participating delegations of the upcoming Olympic and Paralympic Games to lead by example and accept the vaccine where and when possible,” IOC President Thomas Bach said in a statement. Last month, the IOC announced a similar deal to …


Broadway Readies Imminent Ticket Sales for a Fall Reopening

Many Broadway productions are scrambling to resume ticket sales in the coming days to welcome theater-goers this fall after city and state leaders have green-lit a reopening of the Great White Way at full capacity by mid-September.”We remain cautiously optimistic about Broadway’s ability to resume performances this fall and are happy that fans can start buying tickets again,” Charlotte St. Martin, president of the Broadway League, said in a statement Wednesday. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Broadway theaters can reopen Sept. 14 and will be allowed to decide their own …


Spain’s Bullrings Reopen and Reignite Fiery Debate

As its COVID-19 lockdown eases, Spain has resumed bullfights — and reignited a fiery political debate between right-wingers who defend the tradition and leftists who condemn it as animal cruelty. Jonathan Spier narrates this report from Alfonso Beato in Barcelona.Camera:  Alfonso Beato   …