Recent Features
Tears in Rain: ‘Blade Runner’ and Philip K. Dick’s Legacy in Film

Thirty years after the release of Blade Runner, with a remake of Total Recall on the horizon, the work of Philip K. Dick continues to find its way into our cinemas and minds. How did the visions of a paranoid loner become the most relevant science fiction of our time?

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J. Edgar Hoover Goes to the Movies: The FBI and the Origins of Hollywood’s Cold War

Between 1942 and 1958, J. Edgar Hoover's FBI conducted a sweeping investigation of the motion picture industry to expose Hollywood's alleged subversion of "the American Way" through its depiction of social problems, class differences, and alternative political ideologies.

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24 Jul 2012 // 11:15 PM

20 Questions: Dan Rather

Will Dan Rather go to Heaven? Not if God is a mosquito. Which of PopMatters 20 Questions leaves this esteemed journalist from Texas stumped, feeling "dumb as a carrot"? Read on.

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It Could Happen Here: ‘Pharos the Egyptian’ and Invasion Literature

Does every nation that calls the tunes in international affairs experience guilt – and fear -- through literary ‘invasions’ for years to come?

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The Battle for the Arab Spring: Revolution, Counter-Revolution and the Making of a New Era

Through research, interviews, and firsthand experience, the authors analyze the challenges many Arab nations face in building democratic institutions, finding consensus on political Islam and overcoming tribal divides.

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The Violinist’s Thumb: And Other Lost Tales of Love, War, and Genius, as Written by Our Genetic Code

Genes explain those crazy cat ladies, why some have no fingerprints, and why others survive nuclear bombs. Genes give some flexibility in their thumbs and fingers, and they might then become truly singular violinists. Sam Kean explains human history and whimsy while showing how DNA influences our species' future.

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The Past, Present and Future of a Movement: ‘The Occupy Handbook’

Democracy in America has always been an uneven and contested terrain. The founding fathers established the government’s system of checks and balances partly as a way to protect the ruling class from the threat of a voting public.

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2 Jul 2012 // 11:20 PM

Live Fast Die Young: Misadventures in Rock ‘n’ Roll America

A tale of friendship tested to the limit, noble myths, love lost and found, perfect lyrics, and good times as two friends from London drive across the US to pay homage to the roots of Rock and Roll.

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Go-Go Live: The Musical Life and Death of a Chocolate City

At the peak of its popularity, go-go could be heard around the US capital every night of the week, on college campuses and in crumbling historic theaters, hole-in-the-wall nightclubs, back yards, and city parks.

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What It Means to Be Human: ‘Never Let Me Go’’

The film, Never Let Me Go, follows the book relatively well, although it eliminates some of the story, and isn't able to mirror the novel's careful and timed revelations about the mystery of Hailsham's students.

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Satisfaction Not Guaranteed: Dilemmas of Progress in Modern Society

Employing his trademark inquiry of emotions in American history, Peter Stearns asks why, if modern life has been generally characterized by measurable themes of progress, abundance, and improvement, are people not happier or more content with their lot in life?

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The Politics of American Perceptions

If Republicans and Democrats were in a street fight, who would win? Beyond Red and Blue is the rare book that gracefully helps you see the legitimacy of the other side of your sacred political beliefs.

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An Early Moan from the Great Moaner: Jack Kerouac’s ‘The Sea Is My Brother’

Jack Kerouac’s greatest achievement is the creation of the most compassionate of 20th century literatures; not just the adolescent fraternalisms or calls for equality, but the glee of rushing down the mountain with the good news, or as the good news, curious about humanity, forgiving, ready to report well and true.

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14 Jun 2012 // 11:10 PM

America, You Sexy Bitch: A Love Letter to Freedom

Meghan McCain and Michael Ian Black barely know each other. But they are about to change the way politics are discussed in America. Or at least the way politics are discussed in their crappy RV on this month-long road trip.

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Post-Black, Post-Racial… Post-Trayvon

The sense that a cohesion of group identity was no longer a defining factor of black life had taken a firm hold in America. Then Trayvon Martin was killed.

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Who Authenticates the Blogged Word? The Publishers or the Readers?

Is the publishing industry steering the reading masses towards blogs? Or is the groundswell in the blogger’s popularity amongst readers forcing publishers to take note?

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The Day the World Discovered the Sun: An Extraordinary Story of 18th-Century Scientific Adventure

Herein are the tales of three dangerous Venus Transit voyages that risked every mortal peril—a quest that raced to an unforgettable climax, when the universe suddenly became much larger than anyone had dared to imagine.

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Sherlock Holmes, Dirk Gently and the Case of the Eccentric Detective

With two TV shows returning Arthur Conan Doyle's creation to our screens, Sherlock Holmes has never seemed more influential. But for the good of detective fiction, it might be time to look elsewhere for our unorthodox investigators...

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Patriot of Persia: Muhammad Mossadegh and a Tragic Anglo-American Coup

In 1953, the American and British intelligence agencies launched a coup in Iran against a bedridden 72-year-old man. Muhammad Mossadegh's crimes had been to flirt with communism and to nationalize his country's oil industry, which for 40 years had been in British hands. Mossadegh must go.

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21 May 2012 // 11:00 PM

Charles Dickens Through the Lens of Canonicity

Critical discourse on Charles Dickens – especially late Dickens, most especially of all Bleak House – has gotten out of hand, and finds itself concentrating on virtues that Dickens doesn’t actually possess in a bid to shoehorn him into our notion of what a great writer is and what his writing does.

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More Recent Features
//Mixed media
//Blogs

20 Questions: Rachael Yamagata

// Sound Affects

"After a four year break since her last album, Rachael Yamagata reveals a love of spreadsheets, a love for Streisand, and why it's totally OK to suck at playing guitar.

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