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Posts Tagged: The Guardian

Fifty Shades of Sexism

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A new academic study published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior has found that young women who read and enjoy Fifty Shades of Gray are more likely to hold sexist attitudes: The researchers found that those who had completed at least the first book in the trilogy had “stronger ambivalent, hostile, and benevolent sexist […]

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Beyond the Surface

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At the Guardian, Alison Flood wonders whether or not genre writing, particularly romance writing, is primarily “rubbish.” In her investigation, she points out how assumptions are often made about the “surface” elements of genre works and cites literary novels that have used the conventions of genre while maintaining their literariness.

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Leduc Revisited

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To write is to be liberate oneself. Untrue. To write is to change nothing. Writing for the Guardian, Rafia Zakaria tells us about Violette Leduc: discovered by Simone de Beauvoir and published by Albert Camus, Leduc, the sexually explicit lesbian feminist, was largely unread even in her prime though has always been critically hailed, and […]

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Cardboard Cutouts

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For the Guardian, Lynette Lounsbury shares her adolescent experience reading the beat writers and coming to realize that there was little “space” for women in the beatnik world: I read more Kerouac, The Dharma Bums my favourite, and then I read Cassady and Ginsberg and Burroughs. I loved the beat generation and the men in it. […]

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Fact or Fiction?

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For the Guardian, Richard Lea investigates the distinction between fiction and nonfiction writing, a distinction that exists most firmly in anglophone cultures and literature. Lea interviews several writers who work with texts in other languages, either as bilingual authors or translators, in order to find whether separating stories according to their factual content offers any benefit.

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The Great Gorsky

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At the Guardian, Serbian-born novelist Vesna Goldsworthy explains how the “strong plot” and structure of The Great Gatsby influenced her novel about Russian oligarchs: I know—especially for some Americans—I’ve trodden upon holy ground by reworking what is for them the literary equivalent of the stars and stripes. One American friend told me she’d once written out Gatsby in longhand just to […]

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Oxford Dictionary to Review Sexist Sentences

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A Twitter storm over sexism within the Oxford Dictionary has lead its publisher, Oxford University Press, to reconsider how it selects example sentences, reports the Guardian. The dictionary includes sentences to explain usage of words, but researchers found that the book often gendered professions and provided sexist views. Buzzfeed highlighted many of the worst examples, fueling […]

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The Power of Amazon

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How much of the world has Amazon taken over? The Guardian talks with University Book Store and Elliott Bay Book Company in Seattle, two independent bookstores, the former located less than a mile away from Amazon Books: …manager Tracy Taylor pointed out that many Elliott Bay customers are in fact Amazon employees. But she also said, with reference […]

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The Twin Paradox

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By running two lives that started from the same point off along divergent tracks, they throw up questions about our uniqueness, and the chances and choices that make us who we are. From Shakespeare to Stephen King, identical twins have played an important role in literature. But what makes them such compelling characters? The Guardian explains.

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Indie Presses Become Gatekeepers

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Big publishers traditionally rely on income from known authors to support taking risks on new writers. But those publishers have grown more risk-averse, avoiding unknown writers and focusing on mainstream books expected to perform well in the marketplace. Meanwhile, independent publishers are filling the shortlists of major prizes in part because they are willing to take risks with new authors. As […]

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Poetry As Propaganda

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Oxford academic Elisabeth Kendall has found that poetry may be a major recruitment tool for militant jihadis in the Middle East. Although poetry is often sidelined in Western cultures, it is still important in Arab-speaking nations, where a reality TV show called Millions Poet gets more views than sports events: “The language of poetry emulates the […]

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Learning to Write, One Sentence at a Time

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At the Guardian, Angela Chen profiles poet Robin Coste Lewis, who was only permitted to write one sentence a day after sustaining severe brain damage: “I would sit there for eight hours a day thinking of one line and it became delicious,” Lewis says. “It was this huge epiphany—‘Oh, this is what poetry is! You can […]

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Nowhere to Hide

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At the Guardian, Lisa McInerney explains how writing short fiction helped her to develop the skills to write a novel: Short fiction leaves its author nowhere to hide. I cannot disappear into a character or some grand conspiracy, as I can in a novel. I must prove my capacities for portraying one small event in such […]

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Letter From Woolf Costs A Pretty Penny

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For the Guardian, Alison Flood reports that a letter from Virginia Woolf to her friend Philip Morrel will go to auction with a guide price of £1,000-£1,500. The letter tells of Woolf’s experience during the Battle of Britain and urges her friend “to go on living” after he’d become ill. Chris Albury at Dominic Winter Auctions says of the […]

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Fact, Fiction, Other

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Geoff Dyer, author of numerous nonfiction titles, discusses the increasingly blurry border between fiction and nonfiction—and more importantly, whether that distinction matters—at the Guardian: As the did-it-really-happen? issue gives way to questions of style and form, so we are brought back to the expectations engendered by certain forms: how we expect to read certain books, how we […]

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Writers Versus Censorship and Repression

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For the Guardian, Sian Cain reports on recent efforts from high-profile writers to push China to release Nobel Laureate and poet Liu Xiaobo from prison. According to Cain, Xiaobo was detained for “inciting subversion of state power,” and his supporters, including Margaret Atwood and Ian Rankin, hope he will be released by the seventh anniversary of his arrest. Poet Judith […]

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