Cohen's satiric target may well be conservative America and its anti-Semitism, believes Joel Schalit, managing editor of the liberal Jewish magazine Tikkun. And in "Borat," he may be drawing from world history to get at it. "I see a film like 'Borat' as a very roundabout, tongue-in-cheek way of exploring that," Schalit said.Clearly, it's a good time to be a political audio collage artist who is also an expert on Critical Theory and a "homeless conscience in a post-everything world."
A parallel can be drawn between Cohen's imaginary Kazakhstan and the early 20th-century Russian peasants who accepted the fraudulent, anti-Semitic "Protocols of Zion" (which told of a Jewish plot to run the world) as truth and staged pogroms.
"By evoking that example, Cohen's timing couldn't be better," Schalit said. "There remains a populist strand of anti-Semitism in the U.S. that is the parallel of pre-Bolshevik Russian anti-Semitism. And it's emanating from the quarters of the religious right."
And Speaking of the Elders of Zion. . .
"Can a society which is incapable of protecting individual privacy even within one's four walls rightfully claim that it respects the individual and…
These are strange and stressful times for all of us. But I feel simultaneously more prepared and less able to deal with this state of emergency.…
My daughter went to Las Vegas with friends this afternoon. Her mom is staying late at her downtown studio. My dad is asleep at his facility. And I…