Jazz: A Great American Export

Jazz is one of those rare phenomena that resonate across cultures. Meridian couldn’t help but notice the recent American Security Project article by Chad Tragakis about the United States government’s mass export of this American music genre during the 1950s, 60s, and 70s. Jazz diplomacy, as it came to be known, introduced and shared a unique piece of American culture to the world by sending jazz legends, such as Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, Dave Brubeck, Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Benny Carter, and Sarah Vaughan, to countries in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. Since then, jazz music...

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Enabling the Fourth Estate

It is abundantly clear the maintenance of a free press is inherently tied to the well-being of the American republic. Globally speaking, the ability of journalists throughout the world to act as unbiased watchdogs is absolutely crucial to the well-being of democracy moving forward in the twenty-first century. It is not coincidental that some of the most repressive and tyrannical regimes in our history played host to severely limited press sectors. Simply put, the freedom of a nation’s press is directly related to the capability of liberty and transparency to flourish within that state. In recent decades, we have...

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Spotlight Interview: Meridian Social Innovation Fellowship

On May 4, 2015, Meridian welcomed the inaugural cohort of the Meridian Social Innovation Fellowship to Washington, D.C. The eight Fellows – who hail from Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, and Spain – are global problem-solvers who bring together networks and resources to solve critical challenges facing their organizations, communities, and countries.  Meridian has brought together this distinguished group to drive ground-breaking advancements in the fields of youth and women empowerment, cultural integration, entrepreneurship, science, technology, and education. For updates on the Meridian Social Innovation Fellows’ experience in the United States, follow Program Associate Eirene O’Connor on twitter @EireneOC...

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The Arts and Culture Scene in the United Arab Emirates, Part II: Cultural Organizations

This blog post was inspired by Past Forward: Contemporary Art from the Emirates – the first major touring exhibition of Emirati artwork abroad. The exhibition showcases core elements of life in the UAE, further informing American audiences of Emirati art, history, and tradition. Our previous post featured art events in the UAE.

This post highlights a number of museums and galleries that play a vital role in shaping and advancing the arts and culture in the UAE. While some museums are still in their construction phase, many would agree that these bold projects place the country on the global art map.

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