Patrick Madden teaches writing at Brigham Young University and is the author of the essay collection Quotidiana. His essays frequently appear in literary magazines and have been featured in The Best Creative Nonfiction and The Best American Spiritual Writing anthologies....more
Posts Tagged: pop culture
For Slate, Shon Arieh-Lerer and Daniel Hubbard provide a video rundown of pop culture’s use of Nietzsche, starting with contemporaneous forces made his philosophy be mangled by Nazi power and ending with True Detective and Kanye....more
Pop culture has been a steadfast element of public life for a while, but it feels like lately there’s even more pressure to keep up with a certain caché of writers, movies, TV shows, artists, and events. At The Hairpin, Rosa Lyster turns this impulse on its head and gives us an out with the Žižek game:
This is the beating heart of the Žižek Game: the disbelief that something you care about has failed to register on the consciousness of another.
At The Establishment, Annie Theriault discusses the allure of witches and witchcraft for girls that has lingered since the 17th century, musing on how witches both subvert and uphold gender roles:
Beneath all that glossy packaging hums the same idea that has tantalized girls for millennia: the fact that to be a witch is to be a woman with power in a world where women are often otherwise powerless.
Some people write about dystopian futures, or reimagined folktales, or ghosts, or science fiction. Sequoia Nagamatsu, author of the upcoming story collection Where We Go When All We Were Is Gone, does it all. The debut collection, out this month from Black Lawrence Press, weaves Japanese folklore and pop culture into fantastical plots and futuristic settings to create stories that illuminate the human heart in modern times....more
Bitch is where many of today’s feminist internet denizens (yours truly included) got our start reading and writing about culture with a critical eye. In many ways, Zeisler’s book is a call to arms, asking us to return to a rigorous, systemic analysis.
The debate has typically been framed around whether it is ever appropriate for a writer to reference Seinfeld, Bright Eyes, or Facebook. What makes more sense is to talk about whether or not doing so is helpful for the specific project at hand.
No one holds a monopoly on cranky admonishments of popular parlance, but Lake Superior State University’s annual “List of Banished Words” does hold the distinction of admonishing longest. The 40th year’s list is now out, featuring words in the “get off my lawn” tradition (kids today, debasing the language with their “swag” and “baes,”), words suffering from topical overuse (LSSU is over the “Polar Vortex” and calling every innovation a “hack”), and words that are simply objectionable on principal (“enhanced interrogation techniques” and “Friend-raising”)....more
In this week’s New Yorker, TV critic Emily Nussbaum grapples with the cultural legacy of Sex and the City:
High-feminine instead of fetishistically masculine, glittery rather than gritty, and daring in its conception of character, “Sex and the City” was a brilliant and, in certain ways, radical show.
“There was a time, religious historians say, that religion was easy to pinpoint because people were defined by their beliefs, practices and traditions of worship. Now, with the sheer number of people and faiths intermingling, believers are consumers of religion.”
Kathryn Lofton, who most recently authored Oprah: The Gospel of an Icon, is master of the overlapping themes in religion and pop culture....more
A long time ago, back when I was basking in over-priced Leftism in Santa Cruz, I gave a gift to my friend: Letters To A Yong Contrarian by Christopher Hitchens.
At that time Hitchens was a venom-tongued writer for the progressive magazine The Nation and was still pals with the other equally acid-tongued provocateur, Alexander Cockburn....more
I don’t want to define The Rumpus by opposition. After all, one of our 22 mottos is, “Three Celebrations for Every Complaint.” Another of our mottos is, “Only Rich People Call Themselves Upper Middle Class.”
Still, here are some things we’re less interested in....more