Our library contains 1,300 publications—a feast of magazines, journals, alt-weeklies, newsletters, and zines—and every year, we honor the stars in our Utne Independent Press Awards. We’ll announce this year’s winners on Sunday, April 25 at the MPA’s Independent Magazine Group conference in Washington, D.C. and post them online the following Monday. We’re crazy about these publications, and we’d love it for all of our readers to get to know them better, too. So, every weekday until the conference, we’ll be posting mini-introductions to our complete list of 2010 nominees.
The following eight magazines are our 2010 nominees in the category of international coverage.
Given America’s entanglements in the Middle East—and its ignorance regarding the region’s history—you’d think every domestic newspaper would dedicate a daily section to the Middle East’s politics, culture, and conflicts. Thankfully, Middle East Report fills the void with reliable, thorough, and courageous journalism. www.merip.org
NACLA Report on the Americas covers Latin American people and politics with the depth, nuance, and historical context rarely found in mainstream media coverage of the region. From elections to revolutions, this bimonthly is on the front lines. www.nacla.org
New Internationalist weighs the world on the scales of justice. By tapping into a vast global network of activists, the compassionately written and tightly edited magazine breathes life into the struggles, projects, and people who are working to build a better planet. www.newint.org
New Statesman is an essential touchstone for anybody seeking an international perspective on current events. The British weekly allows American readers not only to look out beyond their borders, but also to stand outside those borders as they gaze.
Peace Review presents scholarly perspectives on peace, conflict, and human rights, often returning to long-forgotten crises to offer wise analysis or check in with people on the ground. The symposium on post-genocide Rwanda (July-Sept. 2009) was peerless. www.usfca.edu/peacereview/PRHome.html
Founded between the two world wars, the PEN American Center provides a forum for writers from around the world, especially those living under repressive regimes. PEN America is both journal and virtual gathering place, where inquiring minds share exceptional fiction and poetry, compelling essays and conversation. www.pen.org
Major media outlets are shuttering their foreign bureaus, and the leftover coverage lacks perspective and nuance. Into this sorry state of affairs steps Virginia Quarterly Review, reminding us what it’s like to read about an unfamiliar place and feel like you’ve lived there long enough to both know it and feel it. www.vqronline.org
Global reportage finds a literary home at The Walrus, a Toronto-based general-interest magazine with international scope. Adventurous writing breathes life into scene-driven stories—of Bolivian miners, Persian musicians, Al-Jazeera in the West—without compromising intellectual depth. www.walrusmagazine.com