T-giving 1-line Book Reviews

Here are some books I’ve lately enjoyed, boiled down to concentrated truisms useful for holiday table talk, you’re welcome.

Octavia Butler: Young black women should rebuild our communities.

Wild Seed: The real fantasy here is that a woman can make herself wonderful/beautiful/powerful/loveable enough to ensure the dude won’t kill her or those she loves.

Fledgling: White supremacy is as timeless as a vampire’s ability to survive it.

Colson Whitehead: White capitalist supremacy has poisoned our land.

Zone One: Our consumption-fueled society undeads us, undeads everyone, transforms our sense of time, suffocates relationships, spreads gore and death, and FILLS NEW YORK WITH ZOOOOOOOMMMMMBIIIIEEEEEEEEES.

The Underground Railroad: Black communities engineer their own survival, and our country’s truest beauty, wrested from this desperation, steams along out of sight; bonus Holocaust reference reminds us of the universality of racial domination.

Claire Messud: Women’s primary relationships are with other women.

When the World Was Steady: Middle-aged sisters can take their mom’s advice, flirt with criminals, abandon their religion, repress their lust for women, fight and reconcile, and do any other damn thing a teenager can do thank you.

The Burning Girl: Class determines the life choices available to you, sure,  and women’s lives are forever obscured by our fabrications about them, yes, but no way can a high school junior write like that narrator.

 

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They colonized white people too

Ravages of colonialism, Brexit edition.

It would have been easier, perhaps, if it was all as overt as potato jokes. But what kills you is the ignorance; what grinds you down is how much they don’t know about the past and, if they do know, how little they care. It’s a strange and maddening thing to discover about the people who shaped your country’s fate and who are poised to do so again.

I learned this about British youth when I lived in Ireland for a mere 5 months and visited a friend studying in Cambridge. Otherwise lovely college students thought Ireland was part of the UK. In 1997.

Bonus A/V on the persistence of struggle:

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Burn Burn Burn Burn Burn Burn Burn

These f-kholes want the state to force women to carry unwanted pregnancies to term. They also want to reduce funding for contraception. For health care. For child care. For public education. They want to impose this clusterf-k of hardship so bad that they have voted to put a rageaholic drunk who asserts on the record factually erroneous legal  shit, and who’s been credibly accused of criminal behavior, into the highest court of the land really fast right now before anyone gets a chance to bring additional if-you-listen-to-women-you-know-they’re-true sexual assault and rape charges forward and before the blue wave that I’m atheisticly praying so hard may actually happen.

But this blog post is funny.

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Ottessa Moshfegh Proves I’m the Zeitgeist

Note: this post was composed almost entirely before nearly every person I know, women or not, carrying a traumatic past or not, was triggered all f-ing day yesterday and most of today by the spectacle of a composed, poised, intelligent woman trying to fight an iceberg of low-information, woman-hating PEOPLE WHO RUN OUR GOVERNMENT. However, perhaps a literary theory-type post celebrating as heroic a woman who withdraws from this constant heartbreak in a yearlong chemical haze may be well-timed?

Continue reading

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CZIZZLE

Local treasure Chalkbeat, an education philanthropy-funded education news site, published a gangbusters report on about one third of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative’s education philanthropy spending.

Some helpful timing! Journo Anand Giridharadas just published a book on how elites have always used philanthropy to reinforce their elite positions. A book funded in part by enough philanthropy dollars to help Giridharasdas make a very lumpy bed to lay in. Continue reading

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Aretha

Aretha

Aretha

Aretha

More Aretha!

And Diva Aretha

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