Toni Morrison on Embracing Failure as Information

It’s as though you’re in a laboratory and you’re working on an experiment with chemicals or with rats, and it doesn’t work. It doesn’t mix. You don’t throw up your hands and run out of the lab. What you do is you identify the procedure and what went wrong and then correct it. If you …

“Was Holly Golightly Bisexual?”

For the Paris Review, Rebecca Renner compares Truman Capote's novella and the Breakfast at Tiffany's movie script, particularly concerning Holly Golightly's sexuality: "In other words, Holly’s sexuality doesn’t matter quite as much as how the world perceives and polices it. For Holly, sexuality is part of the persona she has woven around herself. She is …

“Do You Favor the Country Becoming More Politically Correct?” Is Not a Neutral Question

A recent NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll and the connected article results in what they call a "warning for Democrats: Americans are largely against the country becoming more politically correct." The question in the poll, like the framing of the article, is.. odd.The full question is: "In general, are you in favor of the United States becoming …

"In trying to see and hear what professional critics never see and hear, I felt as though I was attending one endless block party. In New York City, Benjamin’s mechanical reproduction has clearly become Baudrillard’s cybernetic apocalyptic ecstasy of communication, in which everything is repeated to the point of meaninglessness. Or is it rather that …

John Kelly and Convenient Cultural Amnesia

Viet Thanh Nguyen, Pulitzer Prize winning author of The Sympathizer,  comments about John Kelley's remarks on immigrants: Convenient amnesia about one’s origins is an all-American trait, since we believe ourselves to be the country in which everyone gets a new beginning. What some of us also forget is that at nearly every stage of our country’s …

“I had not been prepared for the simple charm of watching someone you love grow. “

So far the most surprising, beautiful sentence in Ta-Nehisi Coates' We Were Eight Years in Power. It's about his wife and part of one of the meta-essays that introduce his previously published essays in this collection. Some have aged better than others, but the meta-essays alone are worth the read alone. Man, that guy can write.

The Point of Michelle Wolf’s WHCD Monologue

On-point analysis of Michelle Wolf's speech roast at the White House Correspondents Dinner by Rhonda Garelick at The Cut:  Yes, it’s a sexist epithet, using a slur against women (“bitch”) to equate feminine behavior with inadequacy. But beyond that lay Wolf’s greater point: The White House currently resembles a misogynist dystopia, but the press has …