Columns > Culture

Monday, May 22 2017

Asta Nielsen and Fatma Girik’s Hamlets: Old Mysteries, New Problems

Wherein Hamlet is no longer a neurotic male in princely guise but a woman invested with an identity crisis.


Friday, May 19 2017

The Perfectly Suitable, Perfectly Silly Comedy of Harry Hill

Harry Hill pulls funny faces and he does stupid things. But these are things I like in a comedian (as opposed to, say, a US president).


On Norman Mailer, Jack Henry Abbott, and the Legacy of Going Too Deep Into the Belly of the Beast

How Norman Mailer, while preparing 1979's The Executioner's Song, collaborated with Jack Henry Abbott and opened doors that should have remained shut.


Monday, May 15 2017

Power Play: Brian Williams, Leonard Cohen, and “First We Take Manhattan”

In "First We Take Manhattan", Leonard Cohen recognized the shared appeal of extremism in politics and art as the allure of power.


Tuesday, May 9 2017

Performing Bestiality: Beauties and Beasts in Tamil Cinema

Middle of the road Kollywood’s strange obsession with bestiality through the ‘Stockholm syndrome’ demands attention.


Resist, Artfully: On the Subversive but Compromised Role of Art

In a world stripped of enjoyment -- a fractured existence broken on the wheel of pointless progress, determined domination, and wasteful and wasted work -- pleasure becomes the most determinate form of rebellion and liberation.


Thursday, May 4 2017

Fyre Festival Is an Argument for Higher Taxes—on the Rich

Every day elite policymakers throughout America make the same arrogant blunders as the Fyre Festival organizers did, and their mistakes can be seen in a drive through most inner cities.


Wednesday, May 3 2017

On Wanting Sly Stone to Take Us Higher Yet Again

Sly Stone was one of the first audacious badasses of modern black pop music, a hero and then an anti-hero to millions.


Wednesday, April 26 2017

Joy Kogawa’s Latest Asks: Is There a Limit to Our Capacity to Forgive?

From the atomic bombing of Nagasaki to her father's pedophilia, Kogawa embarks on a brutally honest and personal exploration of the nature of guilt and forgiveness.


Thursday, April 20 2017

Detachment and Re-attachment: The Mind of a Hermit No More

Christopher Knight disappeared into the woods at the age of 20 and returned at 47 without a masterpiece, without a testimony of life’s greater purpose, without anything profound to convey.


Wednesday, April 19 2017

What Defines the Line Between Inclusivity and Queerbaiting?

It was the year of the African American, not the LGBTQ, at the Academy Awards -- we can't have both. Perhaps the new hashtag should be #Oscarsoblackandwhite.


Tuesday, April 18 2017

Eleven Madison Park vs Alinea: The Ultimate Restaurant Grudge Match

On the comparative merits of Eleven Madison Park versus Alinea, on the occasion of Eleven Madison Park being named the best restaurant in the world.


Monday, April 17 2017

Can We Say the F Word Yet? On Fascism and Humor

In light of the decrees and executive orders signed thus far by Donald Trump, we might reasonably ask: is fascism relevant to America's current political state?


Authenticity and Unbroken Chains in Rick Massimo’s ‘I Got a Song’

This book is about true believers who kept the torch burning for “authenticity” in folk music at any cost; even if it meant cultural appropriation and commercial compromising.


Monday, April 10 2017

Broadway’s ‘The Play that Goes Wrong’ Is More Tiresome Than Winsome

The Play That Goes Wrong aims for oversized laughs via an outlandish caricature of a murder-mystery performed within.


What Can Today’s Activists Learn From the Vietnam Anti-war Movement?

The lessons of the Vietnam peace movement are at risk of being distorted and forgotten, argues one of its founding voices.


Friday, April 7 2017

The Beautiful Game in the Time of Tyranny

What a Brazilian football player who taught a nation how to fight dictatorship can teach us in the Age of Trump.


Tuesday, April 4 2017

Can You Believe It?: The ‘No Such Thing As a Fish’ Podcast

The researchers behind BBC's QI emerge from behind the scenes to inform, entertain and tease via their award-winning podcast, No Such Thing As a Fish.


Wednesday, March 29 2017

Tina Turner Got It Right: We Don’t Need More Heroes

Jordan Flaherty's No More Heroes argues that the greatest danger to progressive movements often comes from within.


Thursday, March 23 2017

What Is It About Teens Behind Closed Doors That Scares Us So?

Jason Reid’s Get Out of My Room! takes us inside the private enclaves of the adolescent being, revealing both individual and collective anxieties and expectations.


//Mixed media
//Blogs

Authenticity Issues and the New Intimacies

// Marginal Utility

"The social-media companies have largely succeeded in persuading users of their platforms' neutrality. What we fail to see is that these new identities are no less contingent and dictated to us then the ones circumscribed by tradition; only now the constraints are imposed by for-profit companies in explicit service of gain.

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