People write off Belgium as something of a ‘non-country’. This is unfair, although it’s understandable why some people might think this; e.g., there is no such language as ‘Belgian’ – Belgium famously comprises two major linguistic zones, a poorer French-speaking southern region called Wallonia (people from which are called ‘Walloons’) and a wealthier Dutch-speaking northern region called Flanders (people from which are ‘Flemish’ or ‘Flemings’). There is a small enclave of German-speakers on its border to the east. Continue reading Lignes claires: fragmented identity in Belgian satirical magazines
Satire runs deep in the Irish Republic, documenting antibiosis with Britain and its hard, ongoing self-discovery. Looking back at this output in our happier times, you’re spoiled for choice.
Though nearly twice the size of Europe, South America only has twelve sovereign states; and given their closely interrelated national lineages, all its constituents have had enough political drama in their relatively brief and tumultuous histories to make it feel like a really rowdy extended family. Continue reading Venezuela