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Monday, April 25 2011

Shoot the J!: Negotiations of Blackness and Normalcy in The Fab Five

Looking back at the Fab Five’s reign in the early '90s, it was framed by numerous moments in blackness, including the burgeoning crossover of hip-hop music and culture into mainstream “white” America, Rodney King’s beating, the ‘hood genre in film, and Michael Jackson’s vitiligo.


Monday, April 18 2011

Martyrdom and the Marketing of the Afterlife

Considering the Afterlife as an eternal baseball game illuminates why 72 virgins might not be the ideal final reward.


Sunday, April 10 2011

In the City of Friction and Frisson: Street Art and Urbanism

All the illegal art, if taken as a combined unstable code and signature, are like short-lived tattoos on the municipal skins of cities.


Thursday, March 31 2011

Making a Living in—and of—Lisbon

From the fado taverns of Alfama to the legendary cafes of Chaida, the Global Prowlers explore Western Europe´s most welcoming city. "What a happening, undiscovered city," I said to Clare as we walked back to our hostel. "Do you think we could move to Lisbon?"


Wednesday, March 23 2011

‘Reading Jackie’: When Literary Choices Become Biography

Despite her love of books, Jackie Kennedy Onassis spent a lifetime trying to prevent people from writing about her, sometimes with the accompanying threat of legal action. Her entire life was led with one arm thrust outward, eyes cast downward, keeping the world at bay.


Monday, March 21 2011

When Did Trying to Be Good Start Feeling So Bad?

Now don’t get me wrong—of course I believe in saving the planet (at least until scientists determine if there are other inhabitable planets with better mobile phone service), but there's gotta be a limit.


Sunday, March 20 2011

Banksy’s Bare Wit-ness

Like Aristophanes in Ancient Greece, Mark Twain in 19th century America, or Ricky Gervais at the Golden Globes, Banksy’s visual humor chastises power in its multiple manifestations by hauling it before the court of public opinion for a well-deserved flogging.


Wednesday, March 16 2011

Buyer’s Remorse: Boycotting for Civil Rights

Eating chicken-fried steak can keep you from marrying your partner or gaining workplace equality. So can buying tennis shoes, shipping a package, and decorating your home.


Thursday, February 17 2011

Noir Urbanisms: Dystopic Images of the Modern City

The essays included in this fine, wide-ranging, thought-provoking volume take pains to remind the reader how every instance of urban dystopia – whether in Mexico, India, Africa or the United States – is shadowed by the particular history and legacy of its geography, culture, and society.


Wednesday, February 16 2011

Across the Yucatán with a Ragtag Carny Crew

A Mexican dispatch, by the sea and on the road with students, musicians, actors, wild children, and juggling LSD dealers. On the backpacker trail from Cancún to Mérida, we discovered we were not the only ones on a global prowl.


Monday, February 7 2011

Don’t Ask, Because You Already Know

For those still apprehensive or down-right opposed to gay personnel serving openly, perhaps a little perspective will provide a better understanding of how allowing LGBT persons to serve will affect America's armed forces. Gay and lesbian soldiers are nothing new.


Sunday, February 6 2011

One Nation, OMG

Agreeing to disagree doesn’t make your argument less 'right' -- but it does make it more reasonable.


Why Your Facebook Friends Don’t ‘Like’ You

Is your social network giving you the cold shoulder? There may be a reason you're turning off your online friends.


Thursday, February 3 2011

Lynd Ward and Walt Disney: Illustrators of America’s Tumultuous History

Much as Walt Disney would do with his famed television programs of the '50s and '60s, Lynd Ward used his talents with watercolor, oil, brush and ink, mezzotint, and lithography to illustrate hundreds of inspiring historical biographies of true-life American heroes for children to admire and emulate.


Monday, January 31 2011

Que Pasa, New York?

How do artists get their work done in other cities of the world? Where is it viable to live? It's probably silly to begin our investigation in New York. Just 30 years ago, New York was still opening its arms to the tired, poor, huddled masses of creatives. But now?


Wednesday, January 19 2011

White Up the Middle: How Pro Football Changed the American Racial Psyche

Baseball and Jackie Robinson are rightly credited for beginning a major sea change in American race relations during the mid-20th century, but for a look at current relations between white and black Americans it is football, not baseball, that provides the most instructive glance.


Wednesday, January 12 2011

Can You Hear Me Now? The ‘Last Speakers’ Dilemma

People, places, and languages of our recent past are replaced by strip malls where Chinese porn store and Indian restaurant owners speak fluid Spanish, and Ethiopian-slash-Italian restaurants thrive next to Honduran and Venezuelan hot spots.


Sunday, January 9 2011

Instant (Mixed) Messaging: How to Keep Online Chats from Becoming Personal Spats

Instant messaging is a quick and convenient way to chat, but a lot can be lost in translation.


Tuesday, December 14 2010

Gays and Stages

LGBT characters and themes are more prevalent in theater than in film or TV, unless you're watching Bravo, which is a gay man's paradise, with more bitchy queens than a Miss Continental pageant.


Thursday, December 2 2010

Bullshit Detectors! The Garage Is an Outside Place, and a Place for Outsiders

As the commune was to hippies, so the garage has been to garage bands and to their proto-punk, punk, and post-punk successors: an enclave where marginalized youth can fantasize or realize their visions of independent alternative art and lifestyles.


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