The Pop Cultural Landscape (According to Books)

Earlier this week, we spotted a great list of the most mentioned songs in literature over at PWxyz. They’d gotten their info from Small Demons, a fantastic website devoted to connecting books to each other and to the world in interesting ways. Inspired, we did some exploring of our own, and came up with a snapshot of the pop cultural landscape — at least if our books can be believed. Though all of these lists are of necessity always changing as new works get added to the database (and the world), we still think they give a pretty good picture — click through to see the artists, musicians, songs, films and even clothing brands that get most mentioned in literature printed in English, and let us know if you think the book world reflects our culture accurately in the comments. … Read More

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What’s On at Flavorpill: The Links That Made the Rounds in Our Office

Today at Flavorpill, we got a peek at the British Museum’s new Shakespeare exhibition. We discovered what our favorite books say about us. We read the best Full House article on the Internet this week. We saw librarian tattoos that weren’t terrible. We learned about Portland’s teacher… Read More

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What’s On at Flavorpill: The Links That Made the Rounds in Our Office

Today at Flavorpill, we got to know an artist who paints with blood. We learned about that time the Rolling Stones hung out at Andy Warhol’s East Hampton pad. We browsed some alternative Shakespeare book covers. We wondered what Joe Biden was whispering to this biker lady.… Read More

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Gallery: Cats as Famous Shakespeare Characters

If there’s any one thing that could instantly improve all of Shakespeare’s plays, what would it be? How about replacing some of his most recognizable characters with cats? You might think we’re joking, that’s exactly what artist Susan Herbert did in her 2004 book Shakespeare Cats, a collection of 32 hilarious paintings that reimagine some of the Bard’s most beloved works as acted out by felines. Thanks a post over on thaeger, we’ve gathered some of our favorites for you to peruse after the jump. We know the Internet will love these silly, cat-infiltrated scenes, but what do you think your high school English teacher would say? … Read More

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The Most Beautiful Outdoor Theaters in the World

A Swedish proverb tells us that a life without love is like a year without summer. Who better, then, to comment on the joy of our favorite season than a country that experiences never-ending midsummer days when the sun never sets? The summer solstice is fast approaching, and our yearly anticipation of the sultry, dog days is reaching an all time high. Our plans for the inevitable rooftop gatherings are in place, our outdoor event lists have been made, and bathing suits and sun hats have been purchased. Summer fun, we’re ready for you.

In honor of the long, sun-drenched days ahead, we thought we’d take a look at some of the most amazing open-air play spaces in the world. From the largest natural amphitheater in America, surrounded by some of The West’s most perfect picnic spots, to stunning forest theaters to a stage jutting into the sea along the rugged coast of Cornwall, click through to check out showstopping outdoor stages that have us wishing summer would last forever. Nominate your local favorites in the comments below! … Read More

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10 Ingenious Shakespeare Adaptations on Film

The best of this week’s (admittedly lean) DVD releases is Coriolanus, the sleek and muscular Shakespeare adaptation from star and first-time director Ralph Fiennes. He’s been angling to bring the play to the screen for nearly a dozen years now, since he first played it on the London stage, and when the time came to do so, he did what many a filmmaker before him has done to make Shakespeare tenable to today’s audience: he modernized it. But the text is so open, and his staging is so robust, that the interpretation works; it couldn’t feel more timely and appropriate, with (perhaps intentional, perhaps accidental) allusions to the Tea Party, Congressional dysfunction, and the Occupy movement that land without the clumsiness that so often batters political cinema.

In honor of a job well done, we’ve assembled ten other films that altered the Bard’s plots and texts in a similarly entertaining fashion. Check them out after the jump, and add your own in the comments. … Read More

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What's On at Flavorpill: The Links That Made the Rounds In Our Office

Today at Flavorpill, we met a 39-pound cat. We believed in our “smellves.” We checked off a few of the 29 trends to try before we die. We said happy birthday to Shakespeare. We were surprised there were only 25 terrible TV shows on FOX over… Read More

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10 Works of Art We Can’t Believe They Got Away With

In the context of our post last week on French yé-yé pop, we touched on France Gall’s “Les Sucettes,” an ostensibly innocent ditty written for her by Serge Gainsbourg, which came stuffed full of allusions to oral sex. The song’s questionable enough, but the video is all kinds of wrong — giant dancing phalluses, nubile teens sucking on very suggestive lollipops, and poor little France Gall, oblivious to it all. We still can’t quite believe Gainsbourg got away with it, but then, he made a career out of getting away with it. Anyway, the whole thing got us thinking about similar works of art with hidden meanings that somehow managed to slip under the radar — history is full of them, and we’ve put together a rather eclectic selection after the jump. We’re sure there must be heaps more, so let us have your suggestions in the comments section. … Read More

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Wrapped Up In Books: 10 Great Odes to Famous Writers

Here at Flavorpill, we’re huge fans of genre crossover, particularly when one artist we love pays tribute to another one we hold dear. This week, Vol. 1 Brooklyn pointed us towards a new song by Diehard called “Steinbeck,” after, of course, the famous author. After listening, we were inspired to dig up a few more sonic odes to famous writers — not just songs inspired by their works, mind you, though there are many of those, but songs actually devoted to or inspired by the authors themselves, which are a little less common. Click through to listen to ten songs we love about famous writers we love even more — or just stream the entire playlist here — and let us know if we’ve missed any of your favorite sonic odes to authors in the comments! … Read More

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Bookish Brands: 25 Pieces of Awesome Literary Street Art

Graffiti artists aren’t particularly known for their bookishness. After all, when you spend your nights out on the street as a graphic art vigilante, you’re missing important time that could be spent snuggled up in bed with a book. So after we saw this spectacular Isaac Asimov portrait, we decided to go hunting for graffiti with a distinct literary bent — and in fact, the world abounds with bookish street art, from portraits of favorite authors to stenciled and scribbled quotes to representations of beloved characters. Click through to see twenty five of our favorite finds, from the reverent to the blatantly mocking, and let us know which author’s likeness you’d most like to stencil onto the walls of your city in the comments — or get out there and contribute to our collection. … Read More

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