Readers write: Bauhaus minimalism, British isolation and Brexit, and welcome new direction

Letters to the editor for the May 6, 2019 weekly magazine.

Hannah Mckay/Reuters
Military re-enactors pose next to a model of the cockpit of a Lancaster bomber as they promote charity events to mark the 75th anniversary of the Dambusters raids, outside the Royal Albert Hall in London in February 2018.

Bauhaus minimalism

In the Feb. 11 issue of the Monitor Weekly, I was delighted to see the article “Bauhaus then and now” by Carol Strickland.

Today, when clutter and the accumulation of more stuff often seem to take over in our lives, it is heartening to realize – as did the Bauhaus architects and designers – that “less is more.”

I so appreciate the Monitor Weekly! No other news publication covers events with a perspective of keeping readers informed of the difficulties of, as well as the countless solutions offered by nations and communities throughout the world. 

And I loved having an article focused on architecture. Keep ’em coming, as they help readers continue to be aware of various cultures, technologies, and artistry. 

Such articles are welcome, especially now when the 21st century is appreciative of women in architecture – which was not a reality 100 years ago in the days of Bauhaus.

Diane P. Dailey

Laguna Hills, California

British isolation and Brexit

The April 15 article “Battle of Britain’s history: How the myth of WWII shaped Brexit” claims that Britain’s isolation during the first years of World War II is a myth. In the article, a British professor is quoted as saying that Britain “was never really alone” in the early years of WWII.

It is true that pilots from Poland and Canada fought alongside the Royal Air Force in the Battle of Britain. It’s also true that Indian soldiers joined British troops in confronting Hitler’s army in North Africa.

Yet if you lived in London, Bristol, or Liverpool in 1940, when the Nazi Luftwaffe was raining bombs on British cities, the fact that Indian troops were in Africa was of little comfort. During the first two years of WWII, Britain stood essentially alone as an island nation. 

Alistair Budd

London

Welcome new direction

For a while I’d been feeling some frustration with the stories I was reading in the Monitor. It felt, to me, that the Monitor’s stories were tap-dancing around issues that needed to be addressed and that the Monitor was not as fearless and committed as it needed to be as a member of the free press.

But in recent months I have seen a wonderful shift in the way the Monitor reports on the issues we’re currently facing: global warming, immigration, as well as political manipulation, corruption, and divisiveness, among others. I appreciate the way in which the Monitor manages to present these issues; it does so in an honest way that gives its readers the opportunity to rethink, without telling them what to think. The Monitor has at last found its stride. 

Karen Molenaar Terrell

Bow, Washington

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Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.