Recent Features
Viewing the World at the Level of the Snail’s Lowly Trail

"... I have crawled most of the way through life. I have crawled downward into holes without a bottom, and upward, wedged into crevices where the wind and the birds scream at you until the sound of a falling pebble is enough to make the sick heart lurch."

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Dreamers of a New Day: Women Who Invented the Twentieth Century

The future was revealed by a ‘radiant’ woman ‘in flowing, graceful robes’, who explained that in a hundred years’ time, no one would be tramping the streets without a home, or be unemployed. By then the world’s labour would be shared equally, so that each individual only worked five hours a day.

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Infinite Gesturing?: James Wood Takes on David Foster Wallace

“Reading Wallace,” says literary critic James Wood, “is like playing a reed instrument. When do you take a breath?”

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Race in America, Race in Music: Different Trains,  Same Two Tracks

It's an American pop music creation myth: that blues and folk music developed along two distinct tracks, with their own distinct traditions, divided along racial lines. The truth is, of course, far more slippery and complicated.

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23 May 2010 // 9:08 PM

The Invisible Bridge

Men and women in evening dress descended, but Andras saw only architecture: the egg-and-dart molding along the stairway, the cross-barrel vault above, the pink Corinthian columns that supported the gallery.

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20 Questions: Sarah Silverman

The satirical, taboo-busting, notoriously potty-mouthed Sarah Silverman has written a book about … well, pee – among other things. “Big S” talks with PopMatters 20 Questions about her affinity for Bugs Bunny, an affection for Mr. Rogers, and how, with the help of a time machine, she might have helped steer Hitler from his destructive course.

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We Are Fueled by the Fat of Their Land

The "monstrous steel molochs" of industrialized civilization are fueled by petroleum and not literally by the "fat of the natives", though for the Achuar people, the subject of this classic narrative, that might be a distinction without a difference.

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Citizens of London: The Americans Who Stood with Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour

In the chaos-filled days of June 1940, with their future bordering on the calamitous, the British hoped the United States would pay more attention to them than they had to Europe.

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20 Questions: Cory Doctorow

Cory Doctorow tells PopMatters 20 Questions about how an indulgence from a librarian and an insult at a sci-fi writing workshop were the best encouragement – and advice -- he ever received. The latest result from those prods, both gentle and not so: For the Win (May 2010).

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Barbara Ehrenreich and the Brahmin Fantastic

In Barbara Ehrenreich's Bait and Switch, she experiences an exclusive corporate culture in America that is disturbingly similar to India's privileged genetic intelligentsia; also know as the caste system.

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2 May 2010 // 9:00 PM

The Pope of Satire

Judging from the worried silence that met Stephen Colbert’s satirical comments about the current president, it seems he stepped over the line from his trademark truthiness that entertains to plain-old truth (or perhaps taboo) that his audience did not want to hear. As comedy routines go, this one died fast.

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20 Questions: Dave Barry

Dave Barry was born in Armonk, New York, in 1947 and has been steadily growing older ever since without ever actually reaching maturity -- a condition which he struggles with in heart-rending detail and bare-his-breast honesty in his newest book, I'll Mature When I'm Dead.

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20 Questions: Kim Severson

Food writer Kim Severson’s latest is Spoon Fed: How Eight Cooks Saved My Life. Her ideal guests at the Ritz, she tells PopMatters 20 Questions, would be Gertrude Stein, Eleanor Roosevelt and Lucille Ball.

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High Stakes Criticism: An Interview with Greil Marcus

Greil Marcus on Van Morrison, the yarragh, the blues, the memoir, race, authenticity, imagination, his career and what constitutes 'high stakes' criticism.

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Cracking the Spine: The Lovely Bones

The author's 'heaven' is a concrete and unexpected place with"lumbering women throwing shot put and javelin"; whereas the filmmaker's interpretation changes 'heaven' to something like a garish, 3-D Hallmark card.

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Neurocriticism and Neurocapitalism

The cutting-edge of literary studies uses brain scans and evolutionary psychology to fashion a science of reading, but these techniques have already been at work crafting the latest and most invasive phase of capitalism.

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21 Apr 2010 // 9:00 PM

The History of White People

Evolutionary biologists reckon that all living peoples share the same small number of ancestors... thereby making nonsense of anybody’s pretensions to find a pure racial ancestry.

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Isn’t This Where We Came In?

Have you ever combined the first and last sentence of a novel or a song? The results are often amusing, and sometimes revelatory.

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Unbound: A True Story of War, Love, and Survival

Delegates of the Sixth Chinese Communist Party Congress in 1928 declared that it was of the “greatest importance to absorb... peasant women into... the revolutionary movement.”

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Greil Marcus on Van Morrison: When That Rough God Goes Riding

This is the story of a burly monk in shades, of flesh chasing the divine, of a voice ecstatic in southern blues and gospel and Celtic mysticism.

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More Recent Features
//Mixed media
//Blogs

"Island of Lemurs: Madagascar" Is Cute but Spooky

// Short Ends and Leader

"This flick is a superficial but eye-popping survey for armchair nature tourists.

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