Though male politicians (Hillary’s husband included), seem to overcome scandals, to remake themselves with much more ease, we hold our female politicians, including Hillary, to a different standard....more
After five years, seven months, and eighteen days at The Rumpus, Ted Wilson Reviews the World is coming to an end. Then it’s immediately coming to a beginning when it begins appearing each week at Electric Literature, starting today.
In Episode 10 of The Rumpus Late Nite Poetry Show, poet Nicky Beer chats about her new collection, The Octopus Game, turning subject matter into art, and how we're all just shape-shifting actors trying to get through the day. ...more
I’d propose that we learn better ways of speaking up for and protecting that space, that valley; that we prescribe uselessness as a core nutrient, one we’d surely wilt without. That we write with very fierce love....more
First, the wonderful “My Poem,” by Grant Snider, personifies the act of creative writing. And Brandon Hicks’s latest comic, “The Drunk,” offers a whimsical look at the road to political success in America.
Then, the Saturday Essay picks up where Hicks left off. Kurt Baumeister considers whether the current popularity of fictitious female heads of state translates to the real world. Television presidents like those in Veep and House of Cards generate plenty of interest. But “[t]he real question,” Baumeister argues, “is whether this is tabloid interest or real interest, the sort that can propel a woman to the presidency, the sort of devotion that helped elect Barack Obama.” (more…)
Reading Literary Twitter is to witness brief, terse glimpses into the writerly psyche, and how insecure and unsure and thin-skinned we tend to be. As writers, we want to be validated. We want to matter. The published stories and poems and essays, the books we sell, the magazines we edit: all this output, this paper expelled out to the world, the screens we invade with our narratives, it all matters to us. But does it matter to everyone else?
Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness is driven by the search and discovery of Kurtz, the man turned mad by Africa. Kurtz is the pale white colonizer who rapes the continent, is also worshiped by the native population, and provides fodder for an endless stream of undergraduate English papers. However, there remains the question of whether Kurtz was modeled on a real life doppelgänger. Slate looks at some recent scholarship exploring the possibilities of the origins of Kurtz:
Rarely is there a single model for a complex literary character, and writers often aren’t even fully aware of their inspirations. What Marlow notes of Kurtz’s background might have been true of Conrad’s literary creation: “All Europe contributed to the making of Kurtz.” Maybe there was some Samoa in there, too.
Earlier this month, Steven Millhauser released Voices in the Night, a new collection of short stories. On Tuesday, the Boston Globe described the towns of many of the stories in this newest effort as “Millhauserian,” which Eugenia Williamson defines as places where “characters must process their encounters with the uncanny without breaking their rose-colored glasses.”
Such is the case in Millhauser’s “Sons and Mothers,” which first appeared in the Winter 2012 issue of Tin House. In this case, the uncanny is an aging, confused mother visited by her son after he’s been away many years. What makes for such a surreal, dream-like landscape is not just that we are constantly encountering the mother standing stock still and silent in weird places in the house, but also that our narrator keeps slipping in and out of sleep. Blurring the line between dreams and reality can be troubled territory for most of we fiction writers, though Millhauser makes it work here. But how? (more…)
The Poetry Foundation hosts a First Friday gallery reception for The Chicago 77. The poem, created by Fatimah Asghar, Krista Franklin, Fo Wilson, and Jamila Woods, is comprised of found text and objects. 6 p.m.–9 p.m.
This month’s Interview Show features Rebecca Makkai, Eryn Allen Kane, Mike Danforth and Ian Chilling, and Steve Walten and Rush Howell in conversation with Mark Bazer. $10 at Hideout, 6:30 p.m.
We’re never satisfied with the 30 days of poetry National Poetry Month allots, so we’re extending it by a day. We’d like to thank all the poets who shared their work with us this year. And here to take us out is Angel Nafis.
Why R&B First Thing In The Morning, Why R&B Above All(more…)
…because the role-model pressure becomes so insane, the personal and private takes a backseat to whatever it takes to maintain that fame and to maintain that lifestyle, and before you know it you’re not a human being anymore.