Columns > Culture

Wednesday, March 15 2017

‘Egg’: Bloomsbury’s Eggscellent Mission

Does Humpty Dumpty freak you out more or less than salmonella? Bloomsbury's Object Lessons books offer fodder for daily mindfulness.


Friday, March 3 2017

The World Is an Unfair Place: An Interview With Min Jin Lee

Min Jin Lee’s novel Pachinko is a multi-generational look at the little-known plight of Koreans living in Japan.


Tuesday, February 28 2017

How to Study Kafka in East Berlin Without Really Trying

A review of Schadenfreude, a Love Story, including some personal observations and self-identification that connect to a memoir with a really long title and lots of German words


Monday, February 27 2017

‘Muslim Cool’ Puts Its Faith in Hip-Hop, and Hip-Hop in Its Faith

Where Chance the Rapper injects spirituality into hip-hop, Muslim Cool injects hip-hop into spirituality.


Monday, February 13 2017

Believe Me! Trumpism and the Messianic Impulse

Mario Cuomo once said that candidates campaign in poetry then govern in prose; Trump’s utterances, however, might better be characterized as speaking in tongues.


Thursday, February 9 2017

The Spoiled Little Man-Child They Made King: Celebrity, Richard II, and Donald Trump

Did Shakespeare predict Trump? No. That's ridiculous. He just wrote a play about a thin-skinned, petty, self-aggrandising narcissist whose poor leadership drove an empire to ruin. Totally different.


Monday, February 6 2017

On the Glories of Mardi Gras and Trump’s Inaugural Just Desserts

I suppose sometimes a cake is just a cake, but more often than not, it’s not.


Wednesday, January 25 2017

Football in the Age of Late Capitalism: Field Notes From the 2016 Euro

Behind a veneer of youthful glamour, the Euro all but groaned under the weight of excess global capital, merciless media scrutiny, hyperprofessionalization, domestic French anxieties, and geopolitics.


Wednesday, January 11 2017

Richard Dawkins and the Need for a New Science Populism

Now, more than ever, public intellectual scientists like Dawkins are needed to counter the forces of faith, fiction, and farce dominating our so-called “post-fact” society.


Tuesday, January 10 2017

Amazon Go Is Hacking Away at the “Poetics” of Supermarkets

Grocery shopping is one of the earliest forms of schooling that we experience.


Friday, January 6 2017

Culture and History for the Age of Trump

History doesn’t always tell us how to get it right. It sometimes warns us of the cost of getting it wrong. Art steeped in that history can remind us, if we’re paying attention.


Thursday, January 5 2017

The Galloway Case: Sexual Harassment, Due Process, and Literary Exceptionalism

Steven Galloway's sexual harassment case, and the literary establishment's response to it, reveals a lot about how much work still needs to be done in combating misogyny.


Monday, December 19 2016

Radicalism and the Art of Compromise

Under a Trump Administration, is it better to be a rebel with a cause, or a reformer with a platform? "Red" Ellen Wilkenson's biography gives us some insight into these difficulties.


Thursday, December 15 2016

Trumpaholism, or, Is “Liquor Before Beer, Never Fear” a Piece of Fake News?

How I worry when I drink, and why Distilled Knowledge is diffuse knowledge.


Wednesday, November 30 2016

Was Your iPhone Produced by Slaves? Has It Made You One, As Well?

Media scholar Jack Linchuan Qiu argues that slavery-like conditions, which define digital media workers, mirror the slavery-like obsessions of consumers.


Monday, November 14 2016

There’s This Little Bar Down in New Orleans… Interview With Chris Hannah

Bartender Chris Hannah is an old soul who's perfectly suited for Arnaud's French 75.


Monday, November 7 2016

Are We Gon’ Be Alright?

Crises abound in America, but while complacency won the day before, these times feel different.


Monday, October 31 2016

Nutty Professors? The Case for Scientist-Humorists in the Culture Wars

It's time for the personalities of the science community to emerge from their labs and to get into the ring.


Wednesday, October 26 2016

Is Indian Cinema’s First Chick Flick, ‘Mouna Raagam’, a Hindu Nationalist Fantasy?

The "chick flick" medium doesn't completely obfuscate the espousal of the triumph of Hindu conservatism over secular-liberal institutions and socialist ideology.


Friday, October 21 2016

Pondering Life Post-Capitalism in ‘Four Futures’

Can markets be separated from capitalism? From money? From the disenfranchising effects of equating social power with money?


//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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