The New Yorker

VIDA Count Is Back: Which Magazines Are the Palest and Malest?

Today’s release of the annual VIDA count, for literary magazines and book reviews, puts me in mind of a literary gender avenger version of Santa Claus coming to town, weighing whether children (aka magazines) have been naughty or nice. In this case, the question is less how magazine editors have behaved in school, and more how aggressive they’ve been in counterbalancing their blind spots by mindful solicitation of and interest in female writers.

And the judgment of who’s getting coal in their metaphorical stockings is up to us, the readers of these publications when presented with VIDA’s pie charts. We’re encouraged by VIDA to email the editors with praise or disapproval, and we can also help the magazines rectify the situation — encouraging agents, pitchers of book reviews, publicists and writers to do their part and put underrepresented writing forward for consideration. … Read More

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Spice Girls Reunions and ‘Furious 7’s’ Chances at a Best Picture Oscar: Links You Need to See

The seventh time might be a charm for the Fast & Furious action film franchise. At least Vin Diesel seems to think so, telling Variety with an intense enthusiasm this week that, “It will probably win best picture at the Oscars, unless the Oscars don’t want to be relevant ever.” Diesel wasn’t joking, but we’re not holding our breath that the Academy will come around — just in case, however, Slate has made a “For Your Consideration” ad.  … Read More

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Why Are Female Directors Never Viewed as Part of a “Scene”?

In The New Yorker, Richard Brody has published a response to Manohla Dargis’ magnificent three-part series in the New York Times on the difficult road for female filmmakers in 2015. In Brody’s opinion, Dargis ignores the fact that there are genuinely talented female filmmakers out there — whether it’s Josephine Decker, who Brody proclaimed a “star” after the release of her first two films Thou Wast Mild and Lovely and Butter on the Latch, or Miranda July, whose Me and You and Everyone We Know and The Future when it was reviewed, received fascinating reviews, ranging from “nope!” to “genius!” … Read More

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‘Vogue,’ ‘New York’ and ‘The New Yorker’ Win Big at the National Magazine Awards

Vogue won Magazine of the Year at last night’s National Magazine Awards dinner. The New Yorker and New York Magazine also took home… Read More

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Spider Dresses and Empty Puppy Promises: Links You Need to See

Let’s talk about personal space. Personally, I think anyone wearing this robo-spider dress should just be left alone. For that reason, it’d probably be useful at parties. People could kiss the idea of unwanted suitors goodbye if robo-spider clothing ever became available to the public, because it’s pretty easy to distinguish between a metallic arachnid “come hither” and “back off.” … Read More

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The Secret Truce in the Literary Genre Wars

Should young-adult, science fiction, and fantasy novels be considered works of literature? Is The Hunger Games a work of art? Does anyone care? Over the last couple of years, a handful of authors have pitched their tents in the no man’s land between “genre fiction” and “pure literature.” But the more intense the genre wars become, the more difficult it is to understand what it’s all about. Is it a question of what we should read? Is it a critical discussion about what counts as “literary quality” writing? Or is it a war of words over which books should be published? … Read More

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On Loving “Bad” People: Links You Need to See

With the polar vortex looking down on the East Coast and the sun setting on one of our last days of loveliness, perhaps we should be focusing on indoor activities: This may be a little old, but BuzzFeed’s piece about people’s pooping preferences is extremely timely and crucial. Most of us have been privately pooping since we were five or so, and thus our habits have solidified, let’s say, in isolation, without outside influence. There are some odd findings here; for example, 9% of those polled take off their shirts to poop. Not sure what purpose that serves, but you know, whatever…floats your boat. … Read More

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Move Over, James Franco: Tom Hanks Pens So-So Fiction for ‘New Yorker’

Move over James Franco and Steve Martin: you aren’t the only fiction-penning celebrities around. This week, The New Yorker features a short story by Tom Hanks — yes, that Tom Hanks — which seems to be heavily influenced by his time working on Apollo 13. While reading, I had do my very best to approach the story, a futuristic space-jaunt called “Alan Bean Plus Four”, as a lighthearted foray into fiction by a revered actor (director, screenwriter, producer, and cultural figure) and not as something I would mercilessly savage if I were in a fiction workshop and a “packet” of my peers’ writing had just arrived in my arms for a pre-class critique. … Read More

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Flavorwire Roundtable: Is Lena Dunham a Voice of a Generation in ‘Not That Kind of Girl’?

We are living through a golden age of the female-comedian memoir. Stoked by Chelsea Handler’s consistently bestselling memoirs about drinking and sex, the genre became a full-on trend with Tina Fey’s Bossypants in 2011. The latest example is Not That Kind of Girl, the debut book by Girls creator, writer, director, and lead actress Lena Dunham. Notable for garnering a $3.7 million advance and much attendant outrage, it’s filled with essays about the 28-year-old artist’s life so far, with subjects ranging from childhood to boys to work. So, beyond the hype, is Not That Kind of Girl any good? And is Dunham the voice of our generation — or a voice of a? Four Flavorwire staffers have four different… Read More

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Longform You Have to Read: Mary Gaitskill’s True Stories

In a world where you have more options for satisfying longform reading than ever, your friends here at Flavorwire are taking the time once a week to highlight some of the best that journalism and longform has to offer. Whether they’re unified by topic, publication, writer, being classic pieces of work, or just by a general feeling, these articles all have one thing in common: they’re essential reading. This week, we’re looking at the best of Mary Gaitskill’s nonfiction work. … Read More

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