Freelance film critic and regular contributor to Modern Times Review.
CLIMATE: Since her solitary protest outside Swedish parliament, Greta Thunberg now leads a global movement on the climate change crisis.

What does a world leader look like? The common assumption it’s a statesman in a suit has taken a battering in recent times, as a global political class under the heel of capitalism has revealed itself unwilling and unable to rise to the challenges of a planet in a climate crisis. We can no longer take for granted that the heads of the most powerful western democracies will strive to cloak their failings in a veneer of respectability, as a populist authoritarian turn takes nations like the United States into the brazen and surrealist terrain of eccentric demagoguery, cynical science-denial, and an aggressive style of rhetoric aimed at stoking divisions and sowing chaos. With presidents at the helm like Donald Trump, a former television personality with a bent for connecting with his base through facetious, rabble-rousing tweets, it’s perhaps no wonder activist resistance is also scrambling for new forms and outsider voices to appeal in this novel terrain. Enter Greta Thunberg, a Swedish schoolgirl in braided pigtails who has Asperger’s syndrome and, on the face of things, is as far from a government-savvy lobbyist or leftist counterculture veteran as one could get. When she began her protests in August 2018 at the age of fifteen, it was a solo endeavour, as she sat alone with a placard reading «School Strike for Climate» …

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