Irene Caselli

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Novak Djokovic Could Wind Up As A Puppet Of Serbia's Nationalists
Ideas

Novak Djokovic Could Wind Up As A Puppet Of Serbia's Nationalists

The Serbian tennis star is neither a victim nor a heavy, writes Serbian journalist Tatjana Đorđević Simić. But back home in Serbia, he is a hero who risks to turn in to a puppet of Serbia's nationalistic government.

In a video circulating from Serbia's public broadcaster RTS, a young Novak Djokovic is asked by an interviewer what his dream in life is. He doesn't hesitate: to become No. 1 tennis player in the world. Djokovic was only seven years old at the time.

"As a boy I often dreamed of playing at Wimbledon," Djokovic once said. He has played it, and won it six times. In his career so far, he has won all the other major tournaments, 20 Grand Slams in total.

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COVID School Chaos, Snapshots From 10 Countries Around The World
Coronavirus

COVID School Chaos, Snapshots From 10 Countries Around The World

Teachers, students, parents and society as a whole have suffered through the various attempts at educating through the pandemic. Here’s how it looks now: from teacher strikes in France to rising drop-out rates in Argentina to Uganda finally ending the world’s longest shutdown.

School, they say, is where the future is built. The next generation’s classroom learning is crucial, but schools also represent an opportunity for children to socialize, get help for special needs … and in some villages and neighborhoods, get their one decent meal a day.

COVID-19 has of course put all of that at risk. At the peak of the pandemic, classrooms were closed for 1.6 billion schoolchildren worldwide, with the crisis forcing many to experiment on the fly for the first time in remote learning, and shutting down learning completely for many millions more — exacerbating worldwide inequality in education.

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What A Psychiatrist Leaves To Faith
Dottoré!

What A Psychiatrist Leaves To Faith

Stefano keeps Jesus in his wallet. Before getting his monthly shot, he pulls him out and kisses him.

Maria keeps him near her bed. Before turning off the lights, she asks him to make sure that her sleeping pills will work.

Antonietta wears him around her neck. She says that when she has bad thoughts, she holds him tight, and slowly the fear goes away.

Salvatore holds him in his heart and tells the cardiologist that thanks to him, he doesn't get heart attacks anymore.

Pasquale sees him all the time, sometimes even when he's talking to me, having kept him company since entering the psychiatric hospital.

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photo of a white high-rise apartment building
Society

The Streets Of Rome, How COVID Has Deepened An Eternal Wealth Divide

The pandemic has exposed longstanding inequalities and brought more people into a cycle of hunger and precariousness,

ROME — One evening Alessia answered the intercom in her apartment. It was a man shouting at her to give him 1,000 euros, or he would come up to her apartment with a crowbar and beat her and her son. The man buzzed again: one more day, he told her, but only one day. When he left, Alessia started packing — but it was hardly the first time.

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Photo taken from Chiara Ferragni's Instagram feed, showing the influencer in front of a wall of framed magazine covers
Dottoré!

I’m Being Followed: Between Clinical Paranoia And Chiara Ferragni

Rita suffers from paranoid personality disorder:

"Dottoré, my problem is that as soon as I post a picture on Facebook, someone copies me.

I show off my hair after a shatush coloring? The next day my cousin is off to the hairdresser.

I get myself a poodle? My sister buys one for her daughter.

I share a photo of my nails painted orange? A friend buys a shirt in the same exact color.

Everyone is crazy with envy for everything I do, and if I point it out to them, they say I have 'persecutory delusions!'"

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Mamma, The Last To Know: On My Trans Son's Coming Out
LGBTQ Plus

Mamma, The Last To Know: On My Trans Son's Coming Out

Italian writer Lia Celi has her would-be mother's "sixth sense" put to the test.

-Essay-

RIMINI — Vienna, city of the Habsburgs and the waltz, Sachertorte and Secession. To me, as of 2018, Vienna also became the city of shocks. It was in the Austrian capital, at a restaurant table, that my 18-year-old son announced to me, in all seriousness: "I'm trans." First shock, followed by the second: "My siblings have known for a while now."

That's the theory of moms' sixth sense settled. Everyone in the family knew, it was just me who didn't have a clue. I'm far from a absent mom — I've always worked from home — and haven't missed a minute of raising my four children. And yet...

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woman wearing a surgical mask holding her finger in front of her mouth in a shush sign
Ideas

For A Holiday Moratorium On Debating COVID

The topic of COVID is dividing siblings, old friends and parents at daycare centers. So maybe we need an experiment and stop sharing opinions, from the dinner table to your local news outlet.

-Essay-

BERLIN — In his first government declaration, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said something about COVID that will be remembered for its understated accuracy: "Nobody is doing so well in these times..." That is a description that also captures the mood of a divided nation that Scholz began leading this month.

Anyone who still claims that there is no polarization over the pandemic either refuses to see it — or has no friends or family members with whom to quarrel.

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Photo of people attending mass inside the Church of Santa Maria del Carmine in downtown Naples
Dottoré!

No Healing Here, But Maybe A Miracle

In Naples you will often hear people exclaim: “Maronna ro Carmine!"

To understand the meaning of that expression, here's a true story from my childhood.

Although everyone called her Maria, my grandmother's real name was Maria Carmela, taken from the Madonna to whom she was devoted. And if you’re not from Naples, you wouldn’t know that Our Lady of Mount Carmel (Maronna ro Carmine in Neopolitan) has been distributing bonafide miracles since the 1400s.

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A medical worker pushing an old person in a wheelchair
Dottoré!

Whose Healthcare Dictatorship? A Burst Of COVID Madness In Naples

An emergency room in downtown Naples.

The door is closed, no one lets us in because the security guards are all busy dealing with a man who had slapped one of them.

We finally get in and notice a woman in slippers and a robe — and without a mask — screaming between coughing fits : "They’ll let me die because my husband fought with the guards! Help me!"

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Self-Cure In The Kitchen
Dottoré!

Self-Cure In The Kitchen

I pass by the old lady who lives downstairs.

"Dottoré, yesterday I wanted to knock on your door because I wasn't feeling well".

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Photo of penguins in Punta Tombo, Argentina
Weird

Did An Argentine Landowner Bulldoze To Death Hundreds Of Penguins?

Between 300 and 500 birds (not to mention eggs and chicks) are thought to have died near a natural reserve, potentially all because of a land dispute.

PUNTA TOMBO, ARGENTINA — A resident of the southern Argentine province of Chubut has been charged under animal cruelty laws for allegedly bulldozing over and electrocuting hundreds of penguins from the Punta Tombo natural reserve, home to the world's largest colony of Magellanic penguins.

As Argentina daily Clarín reports, a possible land dispute within the property neighboring Punta Tombo may be the cause behind the death of between 300 and 500 Magellanic penguins, and the destruction of dozens of nests and countless eggs.

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A sheet at a protest that says VAXXED
Coronavirus

Merkel’s Husband Calls German No-Vaxxers “Lazy” And “Irrational”

The unusual public remarks by Germany's First Husband comes as the country faces a new wave of COVID-19 infections and trails European neighbors in vaccination rates.

TURIN — As Germany faces a fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, Angela Merkel has warned of a "highly dramatic" situation "that will surpass anything we have had before."

The sense of urgency of the German leader, who remains the country's Chancellor for a few more weeks, is apparently shared at home: In highly unusual public remarks, Merkel's husband, the acclaimed scientist Joachim Sauer, has lashed out at his fellow Germans who have refused to get vaccinated.

"It disturbs me greatly, more than anything else, that one-third of the German population are not open to the successes of science," he said in an interview published Tuesday in Italian daily La Stampa.

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