16 February


  • The Nation interviewed Rachel Kushner, author of The Flamethrowers. “… I know a certain amount about the Autonomist movement, what they call the Movement of ‘77. When I was writing the novel and got to the tear-gassing scene, Occupy was reaching its penultimate moment, and I knew a lot of people who were involved in Occupy Oakland. I was watching the live feed every night for hours, and you could see exactly the effect of tear gas on comrades in the streets.”
  • Much more than a history of courtship, “Dating in the Expanded Field” maps the logic of coupledom.
  • Check out “Your Big Gay Olympics” by Carl Wilson (that guy who wrote that book about Celine Dion we all love). “Twenty protest, queer and sporting songs to which to watch the Sochi Games—or, maybe better, not to watch.”
  • Slate and The Guardian respond to the controversy ignited by Tony Matelli’s statue The Sleepwalker, a realistic-looking bald man in his tighty-whities.
  • Facebook on Thursday added more than 50 custom gender options for users who don’t identify simply as “male” or “female.”
  • The Believer’s Sarah Marshall on “Tonya Harding, Nancy Kerrigan, and the Spectacles of Female Power and Pain.”
  • Have you seen the film Oppressed Majority (Majorité Opprimée)? Thoughts?
  • The Jacobin on “Feminism’s Toxic Twitter Wars.”
  • Do you know about open-source software? No? Then go learn something at Rookie Mag!
  • Vanity Fair tackles a tough question relating to  Woody Allen: “what happens when you learn, or are bluntly reminded after twenty-some years, that one of your favorite filmmakers may be a loathsome human being?”
  • The cover of this year’s Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue will feature Barbie (the doll). “The efforts at Mattel to reshape Barbie’s image may be taking on added urgency after sales results during the crucial holiday shopping season, which fell short of expectations among investors and corporate management.”
  • Kristen Stewart (a la Twilight fame) has written a poem for Marie Claire and some  poets have provided her with feedback.
  • British comedian Avery Edison has finally been allowed to return home. Avery’s alarming tweets about her experience dealing with the immigration officers at Pearson Airport are compiled here.
  • Anne Boyer has written an incredibly evocative piece about the dangerous influence of philosophy in  Althusser’s work: “Philosophy is harmless, except when it harms. It is no accident that philosophy and wife-killing are both conservative institutions with long cultural histories… In being unaware even if the person whose neck he is “massaging” from the front is alive or dead, Althusser inadvertently describes philosophy’s fatal level of abstraction. As the wife-killer treats human as object, a passive material to be formed or unformed by more powerful hands, so too, the kind of philosophy Althusser describes makes objects of the masses, much to their own risk.”



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