Sunday, June 30 2013
These explorations of the African-American presence in country music are welcome at a time when country music is treated, by insiders and outsiders, as a purely white genre, and exceptions to that are treated as aberrations, gimmicks or novelty songs.
Monday, June 24 2013
Best-selling author and transgender activist Jennifer Finney Boylan discusses her new memoir in a conversation that explores the transformative power of storytelling, the redefinition of family values, and the radical potential of love.
Sunday, June 9 2013
The Pastor of Westboro Baptist Church is one of the most hated men in the US. That's OK with him, because he thinks that God hates you more than you hate Fred Phelps.
Thursday, May 30 2013
Digital music makes sense to me. But dragging a needle through the grooves of a slab of vinyl and Led Zeppelin IV coming out? Now that's witchcraft befitting the Devil's music.
Wednesday, May 29 2013
It’s human nature to Gatsby-ize others, whether it’s for the pleasures of unsatisfied curiosity, or slander, or just plain sport.
Monday, May 20 2013
New York University art historian Alexander Nagel talks with PopMatters about how art of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance is tied to modern and contemporary art in more ways than we might think.
Sunday, May 12 2013
Many people assert axiomatically that "the book is always better", while others have suggested that bad books make good movies and good books make bad movies. But do films adapted from books, good or bad, give books a longer shelf-life?
Wednesday, May 8 2013
Popular culture creates its own nostalgic image of a time period that is both fact and fiction. When combined with the shaky foundations of our own memories, who can really tell what happened? How will pop culture translate the tragic events of today?
Monday, April 29 2013
Renowned cultural critic and historian Richard Slotkin discusses his new book, The Long Road to Antietam, and shares his thoughts on the future of American Studies. He indulges us with his favorite movies, too.
Sunday, April 28 2013
Grove was the hippest and most important publisher of books that broke sexual taboos, plotted revolution, and kept millions of young intellectuals across the US in touch with the avant-garde and revolutionary politics throughout the world.
Monday, April 22 2013
Norman Ball’s How Can We Make Your Power More Comfortable? and The Frantic Force are stalked, ever so subtly, by the fraught subtext of a father and daughter’s haltingly convergent kinship. Surely this is a writer Dad and I could break conciliatory bread over.
Sunday, April 14 2013
The success of Hugh Howey’s self-published Wool series points to a complete upending of publishing paradigms. Much like Amanda Palmer in music, Howey has created a whole new model of how authors relate to readers.
Wednesday, April 10 2013
This meticulous work of research and analysis attempts something beyond the scope of power-to-the-people flashbacks of Afros, dashikis and raised fists: it takes the Black Panther Party seriously as a political entity taking dead aim on American laws and values.
Sunday, March 31 2013
From the Kickstarter-fuelled resurrection of Veronica Mars to Amanda Palmer's 'art of asking', the influence of crowdsourcing is impossible to ignore. Can it provide a new perspective on the relationship between art and money?
Thursday, March 28 2013
Sibling authors Carole E. and John Barrowman likely have been “collaborators” since childhood. Today their grown-up collaboration brings science fiction and adventure stories to life on the page and, perhaps soon, to the screen.
Sunday, March 24 2013
Betsy Prioleau's Swoon: Great Seducers and Why Women Love Them provides an enjoyable and eminently readable portrait of consistent and effective themes in seduction throughout human history.
Thursday, March 14 2013
In storytelling, the past dictates the future. Plots are laid out like traps that our heroes inevitably fall into. And we, watching Bruce Willis in Looper, or reading of Dream in The Sandman, are thus fated, as well.
Wednesday, March 13 2013
I never would have thought it possible, but George W. Bush’s recently revealed attempts at creating art have had the incredible effect of forcing me to see him as a human being.
Monday, March 4 2013
Forget Bates the valet and his perfect Windsor knots. Agent Gates wields a gun, kicks ass, and otherwise protects Devonton Abbey from unsavory spies.
Sunday, March 3 2013
Black people had plenty to say about slavery -- especially slaves themselves -- and as soon as they learned to write, they did.