Recent Features
Dy(e)ing to be White: Whiteface Performance in Postracial America

On the surface, whiteface performers often exaggerate widely recognized and aesthetically pleasing aspects of white people and culture from a minority viewpoint: light eyes, light colored hair, swanky clothes, snobbish attitude...

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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.

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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.

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From the Fringe of Islam: An Interview with Michael Muhammad Knight

Famous amongst orphaned Muslims -- teens and adults trying to find a place in a religion known for stringency -- Knight’s first book, The Taqwacores straddles the line between manifesto and coming of age novel.

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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.

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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?"

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De-Normalize Your Brain: Charlie Sheen as Prophet

Sheen is the new psychic outlaw. He is a psychopathic prophet warning of the dangers, lunacy, and criminality of the mainline media and everything they stand for. No wonder he looks so crazy.

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‘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.

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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.

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20 Mar 2011 // 9:00 PM

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.

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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.

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These Long Years, and the Miles: Remembering Dwayne McDuffie

With the passing of Dwayne McDuffie this last Tuesday we're left with the loss of a pioneer in film, television and comics, and a man of singular vision.

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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.

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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.

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Life, The Universe and Everything

Like Richard Feynman before him, Dr. Leonard Mlodinow has a gift that’s all too rare in physicists – he speaks Normal Person. The physicist and author of the New York Times best-seller The Drunkard’s Walk, Mlodinow has a knack for making the complicated issues that crop up in quantum physics understandable to everyday readers.

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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.

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6 Feb 2011 // 9:00 PM

One Nation, OMG

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

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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.

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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.

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1 Feb 2011 // 9:00 PM

The Urinal:  A Brief Functional and Aesthetic History

How the history of the urinal is the history of America.

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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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