Landfill Fodder: On Adam Minter’s “Secondhand: Travels in the New Global Garage Sale”

In Secondhand: Travels in the New Global Garage Sale, the intrepid Adam Minter sets off to find some answers, traveling from his home in Malaysia to interview cleaners, sellers, sorters, exporters, and importers in Japan, India, West Africa, and North America. Whatever their specialty, few of Minter’s experts are optimistic about the future of the

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Do Black Lives Matter to Westworld? On TV Fantasies of Racial Violence

In the second season, the brutal death of Maeve Millay’s black daughter is the crux of the plot. Ford — is a replica of Ford’s original partner Arnold. You have to swallow these things and put them aside to keep reading, keep watching. Their mothers’ faces — eyes and mouths shuttered tight to not let

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Energy Policy: Will Special Interest Groups Short-Circuit Our Future?

That fog has cut both ways. Of these, argues Stokes, special interest groups have the greatest potential to either amplify or short the circuits of energy policy. Utilities realized that solar threatened their business model, and so the state’s largest private utility, Arizona Public Service Company (APS), spent $11 million in the 2014 election for

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What Do They Know of English, Who Only English Know? On Gaston Dorren’s “Lingo: Around Europe in Sixty Languages” and “Babel: Around the World in Twenty Languages”

He quotes from an 1893 girls’ primary-school textbook that “a woman’s good speech should not jar one’s ear, but should be soft and lovable, and should not talk reason. What began in the United States as casualness has devolved into carelessness, and, to my ears, everyday American language now often borders on incoherent. One could

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The Stories We Tell About Disability: A Conversation with Amanda Leduc

I am working on a short story collection right now that is looking at fairy tales through that lens. And that assumes that society is responsible for mitigating all aspects of disability and that’s also not right. I want to see more stories like that: where the world is changing around the disabled person rather

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Stéphanie Dujols: ‘The More I Translate the More Nervous I Get’

[There’s an association of French literary translators, the ATLF.] Plus, I’m physically far away so I’m not in touch with what’s going on and am not invited to many events, even if they concern books I’ve translated. We don’t have anyone to promote translations either. A writer writes and isn’t held accountable; some of their

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Varieties of Violence

— LARB Editorial Histories of Violence: Why We Should All Read Malcolm X Today Brad Evans – June 1, 2020 Brad Evans speaks with Kehinde Andrews, whose latest book is “Back to Black: Retelling Black Radicalism for the 21st Century.”… And for a larger selection of Evans’s work, check out Atrocity Exhibition, published last year

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The News They Wanted Not to Hear: On Robert Stone

All three books are excellent, though there is considerable overlap among them. I’m not ashamed to prevail.” More perceptive than her credulous husband, Anne begins to fret that Strickland is mocking them — planning to depict them as, in essence, the slightly dull, vaguely pompous middle-class couple that they are. They were unforgiving of mistakes.

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Thou Shalt Show: On Robert Alter’s Translation of the Hebrew Bible

JUNE 2, 2020 ROBERT ALTER’S NEW TRANSLATION of the Hebrew Bible, the Old Testament, is a beautiful example of not only why translation matters but also of how translation matters. Translations of the Bible into English proliferated in the 20th century, with each translator (or group of translators) usually having one denominational audience in mind,

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The Online Pivot: California’s Cultural Institutions Adjust to the New Reality

And “the huge downside to virtual programs is that people expect them to be free” — even though, as Parsons notes, “they’re not free to produce!” Across the San Francisco Bay, City Arts and Lectures has been making the effort to reincarnate their cancelled conversation series online. Since stay-at-home orders were first issued in March, I’ve

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Histories of Violence: Why We Should All Read Malcolm X Today

Part of the reason for his popularity was his condemnation of Whiteness, for which audience often have an almost Catholic self-flagellation obsession with (see Whiteness as a psychosis). But in Black Studies we talk about the need to “colonize” the university, using the privileges and resources of the space to support movements for liberation off

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Dance Routines, Pandemic Routines: Ryan Heffington’s “SWEATFEST”

If you haven’t watched that wonderfully weird series, the way that the characters — who are imprisoned by a charismatically evil scientist and trapped together in a basement separated from one another by glass boxes — negotiate their captivity is through the dance movements that they learn in dreams (yes, the show is wonderfully weird) and

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Burying Nobodaddy: What Is “God” Even Supposed to Mean?

While it’s tempting to read the Soira skeptics as having embraced a modern materialist skepticism about God, it’s important not to project a post-Enlightenment atheism back onto them, even as there’s certainly an “emergent” quality to their thought (to borrow Raymond Williams’s language). What Almond emphasizes is how the bodily God disbelieved by contemporary atheists

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The Politics of Pop: The Rise and Repression of Uyghur Music in China

Are they safe amid the global pandemic raging around all of us? He could sing pop in a way that sounded like the most skilled mu’ezzin reciting the call to prayer. At the same time, musicians trained in more traditional idioms created another popular form that some scholars writing in English have called “New Folk.”

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