What We Are Reading Today: The Promise and Peril of Credit by Francesca Trivellato 

Updated 26 January 2019

What We Are Reading Today: The Promise and Peril of Credit by Francesca Trivellato 

The Promise and Peril of Credit takes an incisive look at pivotal episodes in the West’s centuries-long struggle to define the place of private finance in the social and political order.

It does so through the lens of a persistent legend about Jews and money that reflected the anxieties surrounding the rise of impersonal credit markets.

By the close of the Middle Ages, new and sophisticated credit instruments made it easier for European merchants to move funds across the globe.

Bills of exchange were by far the most arcane of these financial innovations. Intangible and written in a cryptic language, they fueled world trade but also lured naive investors into risky businesses.

Francesca Trivellato recounts how the invention of these abstruse credit contracts was falsely attributed to Jews, and how this story gave voice to deep-seated fears about the unseen perils of the new paper economy, says a review on the Princeton University Press website.

 


Iconic Algerian raï singer Cheikha Rimitti gets square named after her in Paris

Cheikha Rimitti gets square named after her in Paris. (File/Getty Images)
Updated 17 November 2019

Iconic Algerian raï singer Cheikha Rimitti gets square named after her in Paris

  • Earlier this week, the Council of Paris designated an area of the French capital's 18th arrondissement to honor iconic raï singer Cheikha Rimitti
  • The square bears the name of the late singer

DUBAI: Earlier this week, the Council of Paris designated an area of the French capital's 18th arrondissement to honor the late iconic raï singer Cheikha Rimitti. Situated between Rue de la Goutte d'Or and Polonceau, the square bears the name of the Algerian musical pioneer.

Often called the “grandma of raï music,” Rimitti was born Saadia El-Ghizania to a impoverished family near Sidi Bel Abbes, Algeria, in 1923.

After being orphaned during childhood, she went on to join a troupe of traditional Algerian musicians and sang and danced at weddings and celebrations around West Algeria before moving to the rural town of Relizane and writing her own songs.

During her decades-long career, she composed more than 200 songs that tackled themes of colonialism, poverty and immigration that have inspired some of today’s most celebrated raï singers, including Cheb Khaled and Rachid Taha.

She moved to Paris in 1978, where her music went on to garner international recognition. In addition to performing in sold-out tours in major cities across the world, she also collaborated with Robert Fripp and Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

The iconic singer died in Paris in 2006 at the age of 83 from a heart attack, just two days after performing at the Zenith.