Posts Tagged: the new yorker

Old Habits

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Unplugging is bound to free up some time; spending that time is another matter. After reading Mindful Tech, David M. Levy’s book about how and why we use devices, Matthew J.X. Malady decided to give the simple life a try:

I ran to the store for things we didn’t really need, and watered plants that I previously hadn’t noticed existed.

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The Rumpus Interview with Garth Greenwell

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Garth Greenwell discusses his debut novel, What Belongs to You, crossing boundaries, language as defense, and the queer tradition of novel writing that blurs boundaries between fiction and essay and autobiography. ...more

War and Peace at the American University

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At American universities, administrative bureaucracies too often deny students a voice in their own education; for the New Yorker, Jennifer Wilson puts a spotlight on the opposite extreme. Tolstoy College was founded at SUNY Buffalo in the late 60s as something in between a department and a group of anarchist separatists.

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Ellen Bass

In Plain Sight: The Vanishing of Ellen Bass

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Putting her experiences into a broader context, [Bass] now saw, was essential to “creating openings for readers to enter her poems and for the poems to enter her readers.” ...more

The New Yorker Novella

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[T]he long short story/novella is a fantastic medium for story, one that is uniquely suited to the online platform.

The New Yorker has begun a new online series, New Yorker Novella, to be comprised of novellas the magazine wasn’t “able to fit into print but couldn’t imagine letting go of.” Kicking things off is Callan Wink’s In Hindsight, and a supplementary interview with the author about the piece.

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From Being Definite to Indefinite

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There is a vanishing point in our humanity, a point at which the other goes from being definite to indefinite. But this point is also the locus for the opposite movement, in which the other goes from indefinite to definite—and if there is an ethics of the novel, then it is here, in the zone that lies between the one and the all…

For the New Yorker, Norwegian author Karl Ove Knausgaard examines the points at which our reality blurs with fiction.

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The Rumpus Interview with Marian Thurm

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Prolific author Marian Thurm talks about her new collection of stories, Today is Not Your Day, being a true New Yorker, and the importance of sympathetic characters. ...more

Justifying the Template

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Too many stories about mopey suburbanites. Too many well-off white people. A surfeit of descriptions, a paucity of action. Too much privileging of prose for the sake of prose, too little openness to rougher energies. And those endings?

At the New Yorker, Jonathan Franzen writes about “the New Yorker story” as a genre that emerged in the fifties from the inkwells of Cheever et al., with all its well-educated white male melancholy, and the regional variations from the likes of Welty and Nabokov, all beaming with affluent brilliance.

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The Rumpus Interview with Francisco Goldman

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Francisco Goldman talks about the Narvarte Murders, Ayotzinapa, and the stories he feels most responsible for telling now. ...more

Three Hundred Pages of Henry David Thoreau’s Cabin Porn

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Over at the New Yorker, Kathryn Schulz takes aim at beloved transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau for being a humorless hypocrite, abstinence booster, and uninformed impugner of innocent jam-makers:

The man who emerges in “Walden” is far closer in spirit to Ayn Rand: suspicious of government, fanatical about individualism, egotistical, élitist, convinced that other people lead pathetic lives yet categorically opposed to helping them.

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You Don’t Mess with Shakespeare

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Shakespeare is about the intoxicating richness of the language… It’s like the beer I drink. I drink 8.2 per cent I.P.A., and by changing the language in this modernizing way, it’s basically shifting to Bud Light. Bud Light’s acceptable, but it just doesn’t pack the punch and the excitement and the intoxicating quality of that language.

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About That Kenny Goldsmith Piece in the New Yorker

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We ran a blog post earlier today about Alec Wilkinson’s pretty crap piece about Kenny Goldsmith in the New Yorker which we characterized as “refreshingly even-handed.” That description is only accurate if you define even-handed as a several-thousand word tongue-bath in the pages of a huge magazine which both ignored and dismissed many of Goldsmith’s critics.

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Complicating The New Jim Crow

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At the New Yorker, Kelefa Sanneh discusses a new provocative book about current racial tensions in the USThe book, Black Silent Majority by Michael Javen Fortner, aims to complicate the idea that black people are disproportionately affected by police violence and incarceration (notably addressed by Michelle Alexander in The New Jim Crow) by talking about the ways black people themselves called for harsher prison sentences and a crackdown on crime in the 60s and 70s:

At a moment of growing concern about how our criminal-justice system harms African-Americans, Fortner seeks to show that African-American leaders, urged on by members of the community, helped create that system in the first place.

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The Other World

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This ain’t your grandma’s boozy brunch. Stephie Gorton Murphy joins dark deity Cthulu for breakfast at NecromiCon Providence:

The gathering had the buoyant atmosphere brought about when people who know each other as online avatars finally share a physical space—and the feeling of fellowship seemed intensified by the knowledge that soon they would have to rejoin the other world, one sadly stripped of mystery.

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