Reviews

Embodied is an Intertextual and Intersectional Masterpiece

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I could go on and on about these collaborations, but I don’t have enough space here to describe how wonderfully, gloriously, and lovingly enthralling they are. There are poems about birth and the body, stories of misogyny at a university and of grappling with a miscarriage. These works explore heritage, family, gender, love, and in the case of the inimitable Diane Seuss, tits. Altogether, they typify the robust state of contemporary poetry.

Embodied Cover
On May 6, 2021

Her Taste For Speed: Rachel Kushner’s “The Hard Crowd”

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The Hard Crowd offers us a portrait of Kushner through her preoccupations, obsessions, concerns, affinities, and distastes. Her writing on others is always writing about the self and in this sense, she is always doing donuts, flashing the lens externally so as to make an entire revolution, pointing the eye inward once again.

Myriam with the Hard Crowd
On April 28, 2021

Crying in H-Mart: Grief, Hunger, and Healing

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In rock musician Michelle Zauner's memoir "Crying in H-Mart", food is not just a vessel to memorialize her mother but a touchstone for accessing her Korean heritage.

Crying in H-Mart book cover
On April 22, 2021

Pola Oloixarac’s Mona is a Devastating Satire That Got Blurbed by a Creep

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Pola Oloixarac’s Mona (translated from Spanish by Adam Morris) is a devastating and harrowing satire of the literary world, an alternately hilarious and piercing examination of the culture surrounding books.

Mona book cover
On March 23, 2021

‘Moxie’ Provides White Girls an (Imperfect) Guide to Activism

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Amy Poehler's Moxie is the narrative version of Feminist Organizing 101, made with the white, teenage set in mind. If that sounds tiring, know that Poehler brings her singular ability to make do-gooding fun and while its white feminist reach is limited, Moxie manages to inspire.

Still from Moxie
On March 11, 2021

Bad Attitude: The Art of Spain Rodriguez Explores the Legacy of a Cartoonist Who Reserved the Right to Objectify

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Toward the end of her documentary Bad Attitude: The Art of Spain Rodriguez, director Susan Stern asks in voice-over, “Did I make this film to defend Spain? Or to defend myself?” It’s a telling question, one important enough to justify Stern briefly putting the focus on herself and taking it away from her husband and […]

Spain Rodriguez
On March 9, 2021

Of Women and Salt: A Beautiful Novel from Flatiron Books Rubs Salt in the Wounds of the Black Caribbean

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A complex and nuanced story of mother-daughter relationships developed across five generations. But while Garcia attempts to contribute to the larger conversation of race and ethnicity in Cuba, but the depictions of Black Cuban characters lean heavily on age-old stereotypes defined by theft and criminality.

of women and salt cover
On February 16, 2021

The Dangers, and Pleasures, of Smoking in Bed

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Mariana Enriquez’s The Dangers of Smoking in Bed joins the ranks of magic realism's finest short story writers with a group of off-kilter tales enlivened by captivating unease.

Smoking in Bed cover
On February 4, 2021

Sylvie’s Love is Pretty as a Picture

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Sylvie's Love relegates whiteness to its rightful place: This isn't Harlem gentrified by our concepts of unity twenty years into the 21st century.

Sylvies Love
On January 5, 2021

The Mommy Issues Picture Show

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It will entail secret rooms, padlocked trunks, maternal brutishness, and leather cuffs about the wrists and ankles. It will be psychotic. It is called love. A survey of films where women curiously love other women in lieu of their own mothers.

mommie issues
On December 24, 2020

A Nation of Kevins: Home Alone Again…and Again

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I grew up during the 80s, in a household so Mexican a statue of Mictlantecuhtli sat on the mantle, and this environment made Hughes’s films matter to us in ways they didn’t for our peers. The movies gave assimilationist lessons, transmitting important cultural information to my brother, sister, and me. We relied on these films to teach us what white Americans expected of us.

Christmas at the Laundromat
On December 11, 2020