The Syllabus: What you need to know for the August 10 ‘MHP’


While it’s not a full on return to the Cold War, in the sweltering hot days of August, it sure is getting chilly between the United States and Russia.

On Saturday’s Melissa Harris-Perry, our panel of experts on U.S.-Russian relations will deconstruct President Obama’s Friday afternoon press conference remarks about increasing tensions with the country led by Vladimir Putin. These tensions could be because Russia has consistently supported the Syrian government, or because Russia has granted asylum to NSA leaker Edward Snowden. In the wake of these strains, the White House announced Wednesday that President Obama was canceling his meeting with Putin, scheduled to be held next month ahead of the G-20 economic summit.

Putin’s stance on homosexuality has also become a prominent issue, as he recently signed a bill that bans any public demonstrations that promote equality for LGBT people in Russia. With the upcoming 2014 Winter Olympics being hosted by Sochi, Russia, some are calling for the games to be boycotted or for the location of the games to be moved altogether–although the president himself took a stance Friday against such a boycott.

We’ll then turn a critical eye inward and look at all the fuss over the media this week. From actor Wil Wheaton’s outrage about a “mockumentary” leading off the Discovery Channel’s ever-popular Shark Week to what prompted Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus to write letters to both CNN and NBC Entertainment to the sale of the Washington Post. Host Melissa Harris-Perry will sit down with NYU journalism professor Farai Chideya, BuzzFeed foreign editor Miriam Elder, Democracy Now! host and executive producer Amy Goodman, and NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik to discuss the effect the media has on the public’s perception.

Also, join us as we preview the upcoming 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, and revisit the true legacy and decades of struggle that led up to that amazing August day in 1963.

Be sure to read what we’ve linked above, and watch Melissa Harris-Perry Saturday at 10 a.m. EST on msnbc! Also, don’t forget to join us on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #nerdland.