NewPages Blog Archives
Find the current NewPages Blog here: newpagesblog.com
by Christopher Hayes
Posted June 27, 2007 (July 16, 2007 issue)
"In what may be a tacit acknowledgment of this unfortunate fact, Sicko is different from Moore's last two efforts. Not just because of an absence of gimmicky gotcha moments, or a reduction in screen time for Moore himself, but because its topic isn't fundamentally polarizing in the way his previous works were. There's a whole lot of Americans who love their guns, and in 2004 there were a lot of Americans who loved their President, but it's pretty hard to find anyone who loves their health insurance company."
Read the rest at The Nation
by Matthew Birkhold
June 8, 2007
"Over the last few months hip-hop has been under attack in the mainstream media. However, the political hip-hop community (PHHC) -- a group comprised of socially conscious hip-hop fans, grassroots activists, prominent hip-hop generation artists and intellectuals -- has not been silenced. We have defended hip-hop from outside and feel confident in our defense. Unfortunately, most of our attempts to defend hip-hop have deflected valid criticisms of the music and culture. In response, this essay argues that being hip-hop is often a roadblock to intellectual honesty and hinders political organizing by allowing us to deflect critique."
Read the rest on Wiretap
by Steven J. McDermott
Each week since mid-January, McDermott has read a story from his short story collection Winter of Different Directions. These can be accessed free as an mp3 you can listen to from your browser or download into your mp3 player. In addition to the podcast, McDermott has posted commentary on the story over in the Storyglossia litblog: "The Story Behind the Story." This includes history on where the story came from, why he wrote it, how it changed in its various revisions, as well as some of the craft issues he was working on in the story.
June 28, 2007
VIRGINIA — A Fairfax County high school has removed a newspaper adviser and said it will revise school policy on student publications after the student newspaper released two controversial issues in March.
The Lake Braddock High School student newspaper, The Bear Facts, landed itself in controversy when it published its March 2 issue that included articles on homosexuality, transsexuality and review of a documentary about bestiality, and its March 30 issue that carried a story on Post Secret, a Web site that posts anonymous contributors’ secrets displayed on homemade postcards. Although the school did not punish the student newspaper staff for circulating these issues, faculty member Daniel Weintraub has been removed from his adviser position and the school has signaled that it plans to modify student editorial policy for the upcoming school year.
Read the rest as well as other articles at the Student Press Law Center
If you haven't been reading along as each story has been released, the full Issue 20 is now available featuring stories by: Conor Robin Madigan, Eileen Corder, Elizabeth Ellen, Myfanway Collins, Jocelyn Johnson, David Michael Wolach, Marcela Fuentes, Mark Spencer, Shubha Venugopal, Jacquie Powers, Michael Wigdor, Sabrina Tom, Julee Newberger, and Priscilla Rhoades.
Volume 13 Number 2, Summer/Fall 2007
Volume 34 Number 4, Spring 2007
Issue 1, Summer 2007
Missouri Review, The
Volume 30 Number 2, Summer 2007
Volume 190 Number 4, July/August 2007
Virginia Quarterly Review
"Framing the War"
Volume 83 Number 3, Summer 2007
Building Powerful Community Organizations
A Personal Guide to Creating Groups that Can Solve Problems and Change the World
by Michael Jacoby Brown (Long Haul Press)
A guidebook for people who want to make a difference in the world and know they can't do it alone. This new book, with stories, personal exercises and lessons learned, provides detailed information to help you build a new group or strengthen an old one to solve problems in your community, workplace or the world. It includes details about how to:
Take specific steps to build an effective group from the start
Revitalize an existing group
Tap into the special resources and talents of your particular community or group
Recruit participants and keep them active – so that all the work does not fall on your shoulders
Inspire others to take on tasks and responsibility
Structure the group so that it runs the way you want it to
Foster members’ passion for the cause
Run meetings that engage your members and achieve your goals
Raise money to keep the work going
Plan and carry out effective actions to win improvements in the real world
Reflect and learn from your actions to build a powerful group for the long haul
Build a sense of caring and community within your organization
by Christine Boyka Kluge
"In front of me in line, a man hisses at a woman. I can’t distinguish all of the words, but the words don’t matter; his voice crackles and stings. He talks to her the way fire talks to wood..."
Read the rest and more on Pif, "one of the oldest, continually published literary zines online."
"Beginning in June 2005, members of Visual Resistance have been creating small and somber memorials for New York City bicyclists killed by automobiles. Each time a biker is killed, a bicycle painted all white is locked to a street sign and a small stenciled plaque is bolted in place above it.The installations are meant as reminders of the tragedy that took place on an otherwise anonymous street corner, and as quiet statements in support of bikers’ right to safe travel. It was inspired by Ghost Bike Pittsburgh, which was in turn inspired by a similar effort in St. Louis. In recent months, Ghost Bikes have appeared in cities across the country, as well as in the UK."
Read more about this movement as well as view an interactive map detailing Ghost Bike Memorials in NY.
Also on Visual Resistance: "How to make street art"
Another of NewPages contributors makes a big splash with this first novel. Call it Young Adult if you want to, but this book had me turning pages all night long. Definitely in the cross-over category of YA - content is VERY adult, but also VERY real to what so many of our nation's "children" are witness to every day. This book can get any class of students wanting to read to the end and talking the whole way through about issues of terrorism, racism, classism, sexism (LOTS on the male side of this and the pressures placed on young men), homophobism, family, community, education and religion. Whew!. This book lacks for nothing in terms of topics, yet leaves so much to be discussed and explored.
Mexican guy. White guy. Classmates and enemies from across the border and on each other’s turf. Big fight. White guy wins. Next day, he’s dead. Everyone’s a suspect. Everyone’s guilty of something.
Does what you look like or where you come from finally determine where your loyalties lie? Who’s Us? Who’s Them? Which side is your side? Is it Truth?
Contemporary politics, the consequences of guys-being-guys, and questions about faith and personal responsibility pulse throughout the pages of this provocative, eloquent debut.
Published by Knopf, July 2007
ISBN: 978-0-375-83872-9 (0-375-83872-4)
David Horowitz, Founder & President, Horowitz Freedom Center
Cary Nelson, President, American Association of University Professors.
Scott Smallwood, senior editor The Chronicle of Higher Education
David Horowitz: Unfortunately, professors of English do rant against the war in Iraq in English classes, inappropriately and unprofessionally. And professors of Women’s Studies do conduct courses on globalization in which the only texts are Marxist tracts on the evils of the free-market, corporate system. “International feminism” is the non-academic, political rubric under which they discuss globalization. These Women’s Studies professors more often than not have PhDs in Comparative Literature or English literature, and have no professional qualifications whatsoever for teaching about the global economy.
Cary Nelson: My academic specialty happens to be modern American poetry. I began teaching contemporary American poetry in 1970 in the midst of the Vietnam War. I suppose I could have pretended that hundreds of American poets were not writing anti-war poetry, but that would hardly have been responsible; it wouldn’t have been to represent my subject matter fairly.
I found I could add a bit of color to my classes by describing what it was like to hear Allen Ginsberg read his poetry at an anti-war rally at the United Nations and before 10,000 armed bayoneted troops at the Pentagon. He read the poem Pentagon Exorcism Chant in front of the Pentagon with troops all pointing their bayonets at him on top of a flatbed truck, and I stood beside the truck. I didn't hide the fact.
I now teach a week on September 11th poems where the poets’ political points of view are all over the map. But I have no problem telling my students when they read Imiri Baraka’s poem about September 11th that I think his belief that Israel knew about the 9/11 attacks beforehand is nothing more than paranoid nonsense. I guess that’s a political opinion. I offer it.
[Read the rest here.]
Hate Group Count Reaches 844 in 2006
"Energized by the rancorous national debate on immigration and increasingly successful at penetrating mainstream political discourse, the number of hate groups in America continued to grow in 2006, rising 5% over the year before to 844 groups."
Read more on this as well as view a Hate Groups Map of the U.S. which shows exactly what groups and where for each state (nothing like seeing how high your state ranks on this scale *sigh* - Dakotas anyone?): Intelligence Report, Southern Poverty Law Center
by Jonathan Freedland
"Academics in Britain are set to debate a boycott of their Israeli colleagues, in protest at Israeli treatment of Palestinians. Here, writing for the London Evening Standard, Index supporter Jonathan Freedland tells why he opposes any such move."
Read the rest: Index for Free Expression
When Mike became Christine, she gave Los Angeles sports fans a courtside view of gender politics.
By John Ireland
"For all of its trappings of money, fame, and corruption, professional sports has a lot to do with character. Avid sports fans seem to respect those who face up to overwhelming challenge and overcome adversity. So it should not come as a surprise that readers rose in solidarity when a 23-year veteran sports writer announced in the Los Angeles Times that he would return from a short hiatus…as a woman."
Read the rest: In These Times.
By Jonathan Hunt
"...the crossover novel has continued to command its share of attention, and questions about the nature of the YA novel and its audience continue to be hotly debated. [. . .] In this new era of the crossover novel, publishers have had to make decisions about whether to publish certain books as YA titles or not. Obviously, publishers want their books to have the largest audience possible, and increased publicity in the form of awards and reviews can help a book find its audience and boost sales..."
Read the rest at: The Horn Book Magazine
"Over the last four decades Arlo Guthrie has toured throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australia winning a broad and dedicated following. In addition to being an accomplished musician—playing the piano, six and twelve-string guitar, harmonica and a dozen other instruments—Arlo is a natural-born storyteller whose hilarious tales and anecdotes are woven seamlessly into his performances."
Read more about Guthrie's career and get the full tour schedule at Honest Tune.
Olivet College, Michigan
Intensive Learning Term poet-in-residence program, April 29-May 16, 2008. An award of $3,100 (plus room and board) will be given to the 2008 resident poet. The Humanities Department faculty will evaluate the submissions and choose the winner. Poets who have published at least one book of poetry are eligible.
Volume 32 Number 2, April-June 2007
Counterpoise: For Social Responsibilities, liberty and dissent
Volume 10 Number 3, Fall 2006
Corporate Responsibility Officer
Volume 2 Number 3, May/June 2007
fRoots: The Essential Worldwide Roots Music Guide
Number 289, July 2007
Issue Number 187, July 2007
In These Times
Volume 37 Number 7, July 2007
Why progressive graduates sell out / The pentagon's contraception politics / Struggling with sports
Sierra: Explore, Enjoy, and Protect the Planet
Volume 92 Number 4, July/August 2007
by Ashley Gilbertson
with Joanna Gilbertson
Baghdad, March 2007
I didn’t want to go back.
When I began reporting from Iraq in 2002, I was still a wild and somewhat naïve twenty-four-year-old kid. Five years later, I was battle-weary. I had been there longer than the American military and had kept returning long after most members of the “coalition of the willing” had pulled out. Iraq had become my initiation, my rite of passage, but instead of granting me a new sense of myself and a new identity, Iraq had become my identity. Without Iraq, I was nothing. Just another photographer hanging around New York. In Iraq, I had a purpose, a mission; I felt important. I didn’t want to go back, but I needed to—and for the worst possible reason: I wasn’t ready for it to end. After twelve months away, I had a craving that only Iraq could satisfy.
Read the rest and see photographs at Virginia Quarterly Review.