Posts by: Dawn Pier

Eve Ensler on the Congo, Cancer, and Connection

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For Guernica, Rumpus interviewee/contributor Michael Klein interviews Eve Ensler, creator of “The Vagina Monologues” about her work in the Congo, overcoming stage-3 ovarian cancer, and reconnecting with her body, all of which is described in her new memoir In the Body of the World. This latest book, like all her others, doesn’t pull any punches, but it’s […]

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Goodbye to…Earth-Shattering Sex?

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The Atlantic gave the Rumpus’s own Sari Botton, Melissa Febos, Mira Ptacin, and Cheryl Strayed a chance to delve deeper into their contributions to the anthology “Goodbye to All That: Writers on Loving and Leaving New York.” In a roundtable discussion with Marie-Helene Westgate, they discuss what it’s like to leave a city that, as Westgate puts […]

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The Stockholm Syndrome of Sexual Assault

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For Slate, Amanda Hess examines yet another first-person confessional: sexual assault victim Jenny Kutner’s essay “The Other Side of the Story,” published in  Texas Monthly. The power of Kutner’s story is that it lends insight into a particular type of victimization—the kind that happens when the victim doesn’t see herself as one. Kutner’s essay demonstrates how, in […]

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Rockwell and the Law of Opposites

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In the New Yorker, Lee Siegel sheds light on the oft-seen contradiction between artists and their art in her review of Deborah Solomon’s biography “American Mirror: The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell.” In contrast to his idealized paintings of happy hetero Americans, Rockwell is described as a depressed, compulsively obsessive, and “a repressed homosexual.” […]

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Women Speaking Up

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For Slate, Amanda Hess reports on a boom in the publication of personal essays about women’s issues like rape, abortion, or an eye-poppingly grotesque parasite infection that we’d rather remain ignorant of: These stories are emotionally electric, politically relevant, and powerfully told. They’re also first-person confessionals about women’s reproductive issues—the type of taboo tales typically churned […]

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Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying on Film

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Check out Joseph Entin’s even-handed review of James Franco’s movie adaptation of “As I Lay Dying” at LARB. Franco has tackled the über-challenging multi-perspective modernist piece where others demurred, and has come away with something worthy of examination, particularly by those already familiar with the original literary work. Franco’s adaptation of Faulkner’s novel about the […]

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Thanksgivukkah Reading

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Over at WNPR this week Maureen Corrigan offers up a “Literary Escape Plan” from holiday stress. The Borsch Belt-style Pilgrim jokes and mishmash recipes (turkey brined in Manischewitz, anyone?) are flying around the Internet; but since Jews are frequently referred to as “the People of the Book” and Pilgrims pretty much lived by the Book, […]

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“I am Malala” Book Banned

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The LA Times reported this week that sixteen-year-old Malala Yousafzai’s memoir I Am Malala, has been banned from over 40,000 schools in her native country of Pakistan. The book (co-written with British journalist Christina Lamb) describes Malala’s transformation into a vocal advocate for girl’s education rights while living under Taliban rule and the attempt by a […]

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World History Plot Holes?

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A meteor killing off the dinosaurs was obviously a cop out because the author didn’t know where to take the story. This was just one of several responses on Reddit’s thread “Assume all of world history is a movie. What are the biggest plot holes?” that are good for a few chuckles. Grist for the […]

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Melissa Petro on The Writing Cure

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Melissa Petro, whose Rumpus essay “Not Safe For Work” contributed to getting her fired from a teaching job, writes in this month’s The New Inquiry about what she calls “The Writing Cure”—how writing about traumatic or damning life events offers a cure for often denied or disassociated feelings of victimization and shame. To the writers […]

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Lou Reed’s Discobiography

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This week in The New Yorker, Nick Flynn writes a poem about Lou Reed. There have also been some other great articles about Lou Reed. “Discobiography” might sound like the title of a cheesy 70s memoir, but according to Erich Kuersten it’s the perfect name for the genre in which Lou Reed’s Great American Novel resides. Did […]

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When are we done telling our story?

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Most authors know that revealing intimate autobiographical secrets in our work can have a polarizing effect on our lives – old relationships are transformed or shattered, new ones born through the inevitable connections created. In OUT, Alysia Abbot describes how publication of her memoir, Fairyland, about being raised by her gay father, opened a Pandora’s […]

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Reproductive Choice-Making

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Earlier this year, the Rumpus’s own Sari Botton described the burden of living with our reproductive choices in Confessions of a Good Girl. But what of the men in all this reproductive choice-making? Currently they have little say regarding their responsibility for child support once their sexual partner makes her choice to continue with the […]

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