Posts Tagged: Hazlitt

Arm’s Length

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With a deep understanding of colonizing narratives, Emma Bracy at Hazlitt assembles historical and personal snapshots to form a record of the ongoing dehumanizations that have led to this continuing moment of white violence against black and brown peoples:

My grandfather’s contributions to aeronautics had a permanent impact on the science and practice of human-powered objects literally flying through the air.

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Notes from the Underground

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For Hazlitt, Hugh Ryan attempts to document the many personas of mid-1900s drag performer Malvina Schwartz, bringing color to the landmarks and styles of a queer world that sometimes threatens to be forgotten. Ultimately his work illustrates the piecemeal nature of queer historiography and the intermittently rewarding and disheartening detective work of pursuing these stories:

The history of that recording is a microcosm for queer history itself: fragmented, discontinuous, and surprising to the modern ear.

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Roald Dahl’s Hidden Village Home

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Take a stroll through the storybook town of Great Missenden, a tiny village in the county of Buckinghamshire in Britain, and the home of children’s literature’s grand-wizard, Roald Dahl, in the latter half of his life. For Hazlitt, Michael Hingston tours Great Missenden and reflects on the similarities between the little town and the settings in Dahl’s books, which became increasingly rural and homey as he neared the end of his career and life.

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Everything as Disposable

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I feel like everything shouldn’t exist. I think the way I manage is that I try to think of everything as disposable. I have no interest in posterity.

Chris Randle interviews author and artist Hannah Black for Hazlitt in the wake of her newly published book, Dark Pool Party, and discusses the unknown realm between writing and art, the unimportance of being remembered, and whether straight men enjoy having sex.

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Friendless Female Sex Workers

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Not only are these characters destined to die in the cautionary tales and to endure marriages to self-congratulatory men in the redemptions tales, they don’t even have anyone to miss them when they succumb to these fates

At Hazlitt, Alana Massey writes about the baseless trope in films of the depraved and friendless female sex worker needing to be saved by a strong male client, and the poisonous quality it has in an age after movies like Magic Mike and My Own Private Idaho have told the stories of male sex workers in supportive and communal ways.

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Sitting Pretty

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With a flair for the both the juiciest and most humanizing parts of the story, Soraya Roberts over at Hazlitt pens a sweeping indictment of/love letter to John Hughes:

Thirty years on, however, we’ve dropped the rose-coloured glasses, and our response to realizing he sold us out to suburbia echoes Molly Ringwald’s response in Vanity Fair when he dropped her once she grew out of it.

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Our Bodies, Our Selves

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For Hazlitt, Lauren Mitchell interviews Mona Awad about her book, 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl, and together they attest to the unhappiness and emotional energy that society demands of fat women, and the toll it takes on a body and a mind:

It is hard, it’s like, can we step outside of that culture, and you’re right, there’s a capitalist element to it, and can we step outside of that?

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Self-Love Stew

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In her essay at Hazlitt, “Watch Me Bathe,” Jess Carroll shares that she barely bathes, and tells us that it’s for the better—in fact, it’s like reverse self-love and self-care, as we’ve come to think of those terms now. She rejects the idea that mental health is balanced on a teetering tower of meticulous hygiene routines, and that the only way to stay sane is to wash, rinse, and repeat as if unconcerned with anything else.

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Celebrating the Legacy of Valley of the Dolls

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One of the most well-known novels that has spawned its own cult following, Valley of the Dolls immortalized tales of women struggling with marriage, drug addiction, and class and sparked lively discussion across the country. Over at Hazlitt, Manisha Aggarwal-Schifelitte, Amber Katz, Sarah Nicole Prickett, and Kiva Reardon discuss its inspiring and relevant legacy even after fifty years.

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Sontag Syndrome

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Over at Hazlitt, Alana Massey walks us through the anxiety that so often accompanies reading great thinkers, laying bare her own insecurities at the altar of famed writer and critic, Susan Sontag. When she finally does sit down to read the writer she had so carefully side-stepped, her worst fears are confirmed, and she is confronted—as so many of us will be—with the intense volume of all that she does not know:

But the devastation of learning that one’s work is unoriginal is not nearly as painful as watching the circumference of the gap in one’s knowledge expand outward from a single piece of missing literature to the limitless, insurmountable pile of works yet unread.

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Margaret and the No Good, Very Bad Prison

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We know some of the things we desire are probably not what we should do. That’s what makes drama interesting.

Anshuman Iddamsetty sat down with Margaret Atwood to talk about her new book, The Heart Goes Last, and the conversation includes but is not limited to: the for-profit prison industrial complex, thirsty men, peeling back layers to expose human excretions, sexual violence, the grand human story, empathy, and baking.

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The Ghostly Power of Mirrors

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Colin Dickey writes for Hazlitt about the practice of covering mirrors after a death:

There seems to be no universal reason behind the custom. Reginald Fleming Johnston, documenting this practice in China in 1910, claimed that the reason mirrors are covered is because “if the dead man happens to notice a reflection of himself in the glass he will be much horrified to find that he has become a ghost, and much disappointed with his own appearance as such.” Johnston also notes that for some, there is a belief that “every mirror has a mysterious faculty of invisibly retaining and storing up everything that is reflected on its surface, and that if anything so ill-omened as a corpse or a ghost were to pass before it, the mirror would thenceforth become a permanent radiator of bad luck.”

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It’s Okay that You Haven’t Read Finnegans Wake (Really)

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Over at Hazlitt, Sarah Galo and Elon Green have cornered a handful of authors, from Renata Adler to Celeste Ng, into admitting their literary gaps, from Finnegans Wake to To Kill a Mockingbird. Something we should keep in mind is that there is more work produced every day than a single person can get to in their lifetime; it’s harder now than it was for Milton—let that soothe you when you feel a pang for having never got to Don Quixote.

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Handwriting is Dead; Long Live Handwriting

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Type is the same, instance after instance, and the font you choose today will look the same when you type in it again tomorrow. The same is not true for crafting prose or poetry by hand, each looping connection between letters mapping out the inherently linear, temporal nature of language: the fact that for it to “work,” you must always be in the tumbling forward of reading.

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Not From This Dimension

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Sarah Gerard interviews Ottesa Moshfegh for Hazlitt—among other concessions, Moshfegh admits that she’s “not from this dimension”:

I’m like an alien in a human body. I come from a different place, a different plane of existence. I can’t explain that other place because I don’t know it in this lifetime, I don’t have memories of it, but I know it is a softer place.

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