pulitzer prize winning author

stardustandseas  asked:

(private or public, up to you!) hello mollyhall! i just saw your post about your carmen sandiego jetsetting job and was hoping you could talk a little about how you got it/got into that field? i'm close to graduating college and one of the options i'm looking at is working with nonprofits since i've done a lot of that in college but i honestly have no idea how to even get started looking.

hello, my lil pomme de terre! sure. so, i have kind of always vaguely known i wanted to work in the nonprofit sector (assuming i didn’t Make It as a famous singer or pulitzer prize-winning author, which: spoiler alert!!!! i did not) so that was always what all my internships were in, in college (not, to be honest, that that really matters). i flirted with staying in academia and tried publishing for a while after i left school, and also did some freelance journalism stuff, but ultimately i really hated being at jobs where i didn’t feel like i was making some kind of concrete difference in the world.

please understand that i am not saying that any jobs that aren’t nonprofit are useless or stupid jobs. (or even that all nonprofit jobs are created equal; there are, like, a lot of useless and even harmful nonprofits out there. good intentions do not good outcomes make.) only that the specific jobs that i had did not make me feel like i was contributing anything to the world. they were also just a little too repetitive, for me, because i’m an easily distracted bird that needs lots of shiny things to look at.

the things that were really important for me when i went back to looking at nonprofit jobs (including the one i now have) were:

  1. does the mission of this nonprofit line up with my political & ethical beliefs?
  2. do the programs of this nonprofit actually achieve what they’re trying to, and can they prove it?
  3. does the job available to me have room for me to grow professionally?

my actual title is project coordinator, which basically means that i’m a jack of all trades, and that works for me because i’m rarely doing the same thing twice. it’s very difficult to put on a resume but in day-to-day life it’s great. i like being the person with the clipboard at events that people are constantly approaching with their problems. (one time at a conference i was running someone literally asked me to sort out their phone bill. i was like, “uh. that’s … really …. not my ………. you know what, it’s fine, hand me your phone.”)

my recommendations when you’re looking for jobs is not to worry too much about what you’re QUALIFIED for and more what interests you. know that you’re not going to find your dream job as your first job out of college. or even probably your second. i started this job as an admin and moved up, so, you know. get in where you can.

i hope that’s helpful!! 

Because there are references to Pulitzer Prize–winning authors, this is what they imagine: blonde, dapper, bow tie, that sort of thing. But then there was an interesting point of view where people were drawing Cecil as a person of color, as Native American, black, Asian, everything.

And so we began to lament the fact that so many others defaulted to white.

Why do we hear “respectable, intelligent, articulate” and think “white blond man,” you know? And so there was an interesting conversation about that—a tempest in a Tumblr teapot.

But “POC Cecil” became like a hashtag. And still the No. 1 question that people ask me on Twitter or in person at conventions is “What does Cecil look like?”

And I’m like, “Why do you need my opinion on this? What do you think he looks like? Well that’s what he looks like.” Here’s the thing, we’re talking about ambiguity in your art, and people don’t like ambiguity in art because it means that they have to do work, you know?

—  Cecil Baldwin being his usual wonderful self in this interview

After decapitation, the human head is believed to remain in a state of consciousness for one and one-half minutes.

In the heightened state of emotion, people speak at the rate of 160 words per minute.

Inspired by the intersection of these two seemingly unrelated concepts, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Robert Olen Butler wrote a book entitled Severence which depicted the final thoughts of famous victims of decapitation throughout history. 

This is his interpretation of Robespierre’s thoughts

Father dressed immaculately in his knee breeches his silk stockings his tailcoat Mother dead in the parlor her arms folded across her chest as he leans against the far all and I am trying to get my arms around Augustin and Charlotte and Henriette they seem like children to me now, my brother and my sisters, though I am myself only six years on this earth and I try to hold them my arms straining and inadequate and I know already that the ma leaning there is dead to us too and I am responsible and now the door shuts hard the knocker clangs and he has said nothing I follow quickly an strain at the door and he is gone his horse clatters away and he is gone the Bois de Boulogne is full of citizens dressed innocently in tricolor trousers and clogs and red caps I walk among them my hand at my side the summer daylight lingering and they look to me and I want to open my arms they are children and there are many who would harm them and I am in my room above the carpentry yard the sky incarnate with dawn m words prepared at last for the Convention and I dress in white silk stockings and knee breeches and floral waistcoat and black tailcoat and red cravat and my hair is powdered and on the cobbles a scaffold and the blade, dear father, for us all 


MBTI & Writers (x)
Anne Applebaum: ENTJ

“Anne Elizabeth Applebaum (born July 25, 1964) is an American journalist and Pulitzer Prize–winning author who has written extensively about communism and the development of civil society in Central and Eastern Europe.

She is a visiting Professor of Practice at the London School of Economics, where she runs Arena, a project on propaganda and disinformation.” (Wikipedia)


Kennedy Homes: Hickory Hill, McLean, Virginia

An elegant 18-room white brick Georgian mansion, Hickory Hill presides over 5.6 acres dotted with massive oak and hickory trees and draped in lush rolling lawns. Visible from the road, the house has 13 bedrooms and 12 fireplaces. The property also houses a pool, children’s pool, pool house, movie theatre, paddocks and tennis court, all additions to the original property.The first Kennedy to own the estate was the late President John F. Kennedy, with his wife, Jacqueline. The couple purchased Hickory Hill on Oct. 15, 1955 for $125,000. At the time, Kennedy was a young senator and traveled quite frequently. While living at Hickory Hill, he authored the Pulitzer-prize winning Profiles in Courage. Robert F. Kennedy and his wife, Ethel, moved into the home in 1957 after Jackie Kennedy suffered a miscarriage and the couple returned to Georgetown to live.

2014 YA Reads Written by Authors of Color

Warrior (Dragon King Chronicles #2) by Ellen Oh (Dec 31st, 2013) - Kira has valiantly protected her kingdom—and the crown prince—and is certain she will find the second treasure needed to fulfill the Dragon King’s prophecy. Warrior boasts a strong female hero, romantic intrigue, and mythical creatures such as a nine-tailed fox demon, a goblin army, and a hungry dragon with a snarky attitude.

Diamonds and Deceit (At Somerton #2) by Leila Rasheed (Jan 7th, 2014) - In the second book in the At Somerton series, Rose grows into her new titled position in the Averley family, while Ada must decide between saving her family or betraying her heart.

Gold Medal Winter by Donna Freitas (Jan 7th, 2014) - Esperanza Flores’s place on the United States Olympic figure skating team has come at the expense of an injured skater, so in addition to the pressure of sudden fame and outsized expectations Espi has to deal with the resentment of her teammates–and their efforts to sabotage her routine.

Touch (The Queen of the Dead #2) by Michelle Sagara (Jan 7th, 2014) - Nathan died the summer before his final year in high school. But he wakes in his room—or in the shrine of his room his mother’s made—confused, cold, and unable to interact with anyone or anything he sees. The only clear memory he has is a dream of a shining city and its glorious queen, but the dream fades, until he once again meets his girlfriend Emma by the side of his own grave. Nathan wants life. He wants Emma. But, even if Emma can deliver what he desires, the cost may be too high to pay…

Love Reborn (Dead Beautiful #3) by Yvonne Woon (Jan 7th, 2014) - Renée and Dante are dying. The soul they share cannot sustain them both, and they’re quickly running out of time. But Renée has in her possession a legendary chest said to contain the secret to eternal life-if only they could solve the clues that lie within it. With both the Liberum, a Brotherhood of the Undead, and a team of Monitors, led by Renée’s own grandfather, in hot pursuit, Renée and Dante must keep the chest safe or risk having it fall into the wrong hands. With the help of a mysterious letter-writer called only Monsieur, Renée and Dante follow a series of clues that lead them on a treacherous journey across Europe. They seek the Netherworld, a legendary chasm where souls go to be cleansed. It’s their only chance at a fresh start, but with it comes a terrible choice, one they never imagined they would be forced to make. 

When I Was The Greatest by Jason Reynolds (Jan 7th, 2014) - In Bed Stuy, New York, a small misunderstanding can escalate into having a price on your head—even if you’re totally clean. Ali’s got enough going on, between school and boxing and helping out at home. His best friend Noodles, though. Now there’s a dude looking for trouble—and, somehow, it’s always Ali around to pick up the pieces.  And then there’s Needles. Needles is Noodles’s brother. He’s got a syndrome, and gets these ticks and blurts out the wildest, craziest things. It’s cool, though: everyone on their street knows he doesn’t mean anything by it. Yeah, it’s cool…until Ali and Noodles and Needles find themselves somewhere they never expected to be…somewhere they never should’ve been—where the people aren’t so friendly, and even less forgiving

The Blossoming Universe of Violet Diamond by Brenda Woods (Jan 9th, 2014) - Violet is a smart, funny, brown-eyed, brown-haired girl in a family of blonds. Her mom is white, and her dad, who died before she was born, was black. She attends a mostly white school where she sometimes feels like a brown leaf on a pile of snow. She’s tired of people asking if she’s adopted. Now that Violet’s 11, she decides it’s time to learn about her African American heritage. Despite getting off to a rocky start trying to reclaim her dad’s side of the family, she can feel her confidence growing as the puzzle pieces of her life finally start coming together. (MG)

For Today I Was A Boy by Kim Fu (Jan 14th, 2014) - Peter Huang and his sisters, elegant Adele, shrewd Helen, and Bonnie the bon vivantgrow up in a house of many secrets, then escape the confines of small-town Ontario and spread from Montreal to California to Berlin. Peter’s own journey is obstructed by playground bullies, masochistic lovers, Christian ex-gays, and the ever-present shadow of his Chinese father. At birth, Peter had been given the Chinese name juan chaun, powerful king. The exalted only son in the middle of three daughters, Peter was the one who would finally embody his immigrant father's ideal of power and masculinity. But Peter has different dreams: he is certain he is a girl.

Fake ID by Lamar Giles (Jan 21st, 2014) - African-American teen Nick Pearson in the Witness Protection Program moves to a new town and finds himself trying to solve a murder mystery when his first friend, Eli Cruz, is found dead.

Beware of Boys (Charly’s Epic Fiasco #4) by Kelli London (Jan 28th, 2014) - Now that Charly’s a star, she wants to give back any way she can. So she’s made The Extreme Dream Team’s newest mission to help three sizzling celebs’ charitable foundation build a super swanky retreat for teen girls who’ve battled an illness. But keeping things running smoothly is next to impossible when too many ideas–and egos–collide.

Bird by Crystal Chan (Jan 28th, 2014) - A girl, who was born on the day her brother Bird died, has grown up in a house of silence and secrets; when she meets John, a mysterious new boy in her rural Iowan town, and those secrets start to come out. (MG)

Girl Out of Water by Winifred Burton (Jan 28th, 2014) - In Seattle, Tabitha is about to be reborn from the rubble of her crazy family that doesn’t have any parents, her crappy job at a video store, and a social status that lepers would pity. When she collides with the team that polices the citizens of the other Seattle, the hybrids and legendary creatures living in the muddy gloom and energy efficient condos of the Puget Sound, she has to decide: If the shadow city pushes outside its boundaries, is it her job to push back? When an exceptional physicist that can do impossible things threatens the whole city, does Tabitha have a choice?

Ignite Me (Shatter Me #3) by Tahereh Mafi (Feb 4th, 2014) - With Omega Point destroyed, Juliette doesn’t know if the rebels, her friends, or even Adam are alive. But that won’t keep her from trying to take down The Reestablishment once and for all. Now she must rely on Warner, the handsome commander of Sector 45. The one person she never thought she could trust. The same person who saved her life. He promises to help Juliette master her powers and save their dying world…but that’s not all he wants with her.

Saving Kabul Corner by N.H. Nezai (Feb 4th, 2014) - From Afghanistan to America, family matters most in this companion to Shooting Kabul.” A rough and tumble tomboy, 12-year-old Ariana couldn’t be more different from her cousin Laila, who just arrived from Afghanistan with her family. Laila is a proper, ladylike Afghan girl, one who can cook, sew, sing, and who is well versed in Pukhtun culture and manners. Arianna hates her. Laila not only invades Ariana’s bedroom in their cramped Fremont townhouse, but she also becomes close with Mariam Nurzai, Ariana’s best friend. Then a rival Afghan grocery store opens near Ariana’s family store, reigniting a decades-old feud tracing back to Afghanistan. The cousins, Mariam, and their newfound frenemie, Waleed Ghilzai, must ban together to help the families find a lasting peace before it destroys both businesses and everything their parents have worked for. (MG)

Game World by Christopher John Farley (Feb 4th, 2014) - Dylan Rudee’s life is an epic fail. He’s bullied at school and the aunt who has raised him since he was orphaned as a child just lost her job and their apartment. Dylan’s one chance to help his family is the only thing he’s good at: video games. The multibillion-dollar company Mee Corp. has announced a televised tournament to find the Game-Changers: the forty-four kids who are the best in the world at playing Xamaica, a role-playing fantasy game that’s sweeping the planet. If Dylan can win the top prize, he just might be able to change his life. (MG)

Willow by Tonya Cherie Hagamin (Feb 11th, 2014) - On one side of the Mason-Dixon Line lives fifteen-year-old Willow, her master’s favorite servant. She’s been taught to read and has learned to write. She believes her master is good to her and fears the rebel slave runaways. On the other side of the line is seventeen-year-old Cato, a black man, free born. It’s his personal mission to sneak as many fugitive slaves to freedom as he can. Willow’s and Cato’s lives are about to intersect, with life-changing consequences for both of them. Tonya Cherie Hegamin’s moving coming-of-age story is a poignant meditation on the many ways a person can be enslaved, and the force of will needed to be truly emancipated.

The Skinwalker’s Apprentice by Claribel Ortega (Feb 24th, 2014) - The Skinwalker’s Apprentice is a prequel to the upcoming novel, Emerald Kipp and The Riddle of The Timekeeper, a terrifying magical scavenger hunt through the gritty streets of 1980’s New York City.

Darksoul by Eveline Hunt (March 2014) - 17-year-old Hazel Lisle has a problem. Or two. Or three. Problem number one: Asher Evans, her best friend and long-time crush. Then there is Hunter Slade, who, although cold at first, becomes surprisingly good friends with her. He also works her last nerve. But when she finds out his deadly secret, their friendship comes to an abrupt end—or so it may seem.  Hunter and Ash are the least of Hazel’s worries. Someone is out to kill her, and she has no idea why. After a series of scary encounters, Hazel doesn’t know who or what to believe, although she isn’t about to go down without a fight. Armed with some old self-defense lessons, two Butterfinger candy bars, and her ever-present camera, Hazel will seek to find out the truth—no matter how much it costs her.

Abby Spencer Goes to Hollywood by Varsha Bajaj (March 1st, 2014) - What 13-year-old Abby wants most is to meet her father. She just never imagined he would be a huge film star–in Bollywood! Now she’s traveling to Mumbai to get to know her famous father. Abby is overwhelmed by the culture clash, the pressures of being the daughter of India’s most famous celebrity, and the burden of keeping her identity a secret. But as she learns to navigate her new surroundings, she just might discover where she really belongs. (MG) 

Alpha Goddess by Amalie Howard (March 4th, 2014) - A retelling of Ramayana, the epic Indian love story of Rama and Sita. Sera is Lakshmi reborn, a human avatar of the immortal Indian goddess. Marked by the, magic symbols of both heaven and hell, Sera’s avatar is meant to bring balance to the mortal world. Torn between her present life and her previous incarnation as Sita — the wife of an Indian god — Sera is the key to an epic battle between good and evil.

Keep reading

“You guys know about vampires?You know, vampires have no reflections in a mirror? There’s this idea that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror.  And what I’ve always thought isn’t that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror. It’s that if you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves. And growing up, I felt like a monster in some ways. I didn’t see myself reflected at all. I was like, "Yo, is something wrong with me? That the whole society seems to think that people like me don’t exist? And part of what inspired me, was this deep desire that before I died, I would make a couple of mirrors. That I would make some mirrors so that kids like me might seem themselves reflected back and might not feel so monstrous for it.” - Pulitzer Prize winning author Junot Diaz

The Sixth Extinction with Elizabeth Kolbert
Elizabeth Kolbert and Mike Novacek
The Sixth Extinction with Elizabeth Kolbert

Congratulations to author Elizabeth Kolbert on winning the Pulitzer Prize in general nonfiction for her book “The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History.”  

On February 27, 2014, Elizabeth Kolbert, staff writer for the The New Yorker magazine and author of the new book The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, and Michael Novacek, senior vice president and provost of science at the American Museum of Natural History, discussed the process of extinction—and the role humanity plays in it. The event was moderated by science writer and video journalist Flora Lichtman.

Listen to the podcast above or download it on iTunes

Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall starred in “The Big Sleep,” circa 1946.  The famous Hollywood couple met on the set of  "To Have and Have Not" in 1944. When they met, Bogart was 44 and Bacall was 19.  The couple married on May 21, 1945 in a small ceremony at Bogart’s close friend, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Louis Bromfield at Malabar Farm near Lucas, Ohio.

The couple starred four films together including the aforementioned and  "Dark Passage" (1947) and “Key Largo” (1948).


On this day in 1943, Samuel Shepard Rogers III was born in Fort Sheridan, Illinois.

“I believe in my mask– The man I made up is me
I believe in my dance– And my destiny”
― Sam Shepard

Sam Shepard is the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of more than forty-five plays. As an actor, he has appeared in more than thirty films, receiving an Oscar nomination in 1984 for The Right Stuff. He was a finalist for the W. H. Smith Literary Award for his story collection Great Dream of Heaven. He lives in New York and Kentucky.

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Russo talks about new book, Everybody’s Fool, a sequel to 1993’s Nobody’s Fool.

Terry Gross: So finally, I want to ask you about the title of your new book “Everybody’s Fool.” So it’s a sequel to “Nobody’s Fool.” So you knew you wanted to call this “Everybody’s Fool” and how the title resonates, and you had to have a reason to call it that. And so you actually Raymer, the police chief, saying at some point “I’m so tired of being everybody’s fool.” Did you know you had to give some character that line in order to have the title that you needed?

Richard Russo: Well, it was nice when it turned up, I had the opportunity to do so. But I’m sitting here in the studio, of course, looking at the cover of my book which says “Everybody’s Fool.” And there’s a name right below that, and it’s Richard Russo.

So I leave you to contemplate what may or may not be an irony here. I only mention it because it occurred to me.

Hear this interview 

In articles, blog posts and Facebook threads, scholars have debated whether “Hamilton” over-glorifies the man, inflating his opposition to slavery while glossing over less attractive aspects of his politics, which were not necessarily as in tune with contemporary progressive values as audiences leaving the theater might assume.

The conversation has yet to erupt into a full-fledged historians’ rap battle. But some scholars are wondering if one is due to start.

“The show, for all its redemptive and smart aspects, is part of this ‘Founders Chic’ phenomenon,” said David Waldstreicher, a historian at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York who last September sounded an early note of skepticism on The Junto, a group blog about early American history.

Amid all the enthusiasm for “Hamilton” the musical, he added, Hamilton the man “has gotten a free pass.”

Annette Gordon-Reed, a professor of history and law at Harvard and the Pulitzer-Prize-winning author of “The Hemingses of Monticello,” put it more bluntly.

“One of the most interesting things about the ‘Hamilton’ phenomenon,” she wrote last week on the blog of the National Council on Public History, “is just how little serious criticism the play has received.”

Ms. Gordon-Reed was responding to a critical essay by Lyra D. Monteiro, in the journal The Public Historian, arguing that the show’s multiethnic casting obscures the almost complete lack of identifiable African-American characters, making the country’s founding seem like an all-white affair.

“It’s an amazing piece of theater, but it concerns me that people are seeing it as a piece of history,” Ms. Monteiro, an assistant professor of history at Rutgers University, Newark, said in an interview.

The founders, she added, “really didn’t want to create the country we actually live in today.”

Ms. Gordon-Reed — who is credited with breaking down the resistance among historians to the claim that Thomas Jefferson had a sexual relationship with Sally Hemings — wrote in her response that she shared some of Ms. Monteiro’s qualms, even as she loved the musical and listened to the cast album every day.

“Imagine ‘Hamilton’ with white actors,” she wrote. “Would the rosy view of the founding era grate?”

Historians are generally not reluctant to call out the supposed sins of popularizers. When Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” arrived in 2012, a number of prominent scholars blasted it for promoting a “great man” view of history and neglecting the role African-Americans played in their own emancipation.

While the most recent critiques of “Hamilton” have focused on race, some scholars have also noted that it’s an odd moment for the public to embrace an unabashed elitist who liked big banks, mistrusted the masses and at one point called for a monarchal presidency and a Senate that served for life.

Alexander Hamilton “was more a man for the 1 percent than the 99 percent,” said Sean Wilentz, a professor at Princeton and the author of “The Politicians and the Egalitarians,” to be published in May.


R.B. Bernstein, a historian at City College of New York who has written extensively about Jefferson, credited “Hamilton” with keeping the subject of slavery simmering underneath its jam-packed story. But race and slavery, he added, were not the only important, or timely, aspects of the show.

“It’s about how hard it is to do politics, about how people of fundamentally clashing political views tried to work together to create a shared constitutional enterprise,” he said. “And right now, that’s a message we really need.”

Recommended Blogs for Civil War Buffs

I’ve been considering doing an American Civil War and 19th century-focused  Tumblr blogroll for a while now. I’m probably going to miss a few (apologies in advance!) but if you want me to include your site (or someone else’s), please feel free to send me an ask. Here are some of my current favorites (in no particular order) that focus primarily on the ACW era. Please check them out you haven’t already:

  • Chooeubhaokhaossian the Great’s Temple of History
    • ACW & mid-19th century with the occasional ventures into WWI. In addition to having a solid knack for shedding light on a lot of rarely-seen images, Chubachus also creates great animated gifs (”wiggle grams?”) out of stereoscopic images.
  • The Civil War Parlor
    • Lots of rare images and fantastic text content on a broad variety of ACW subjects.
  • The Life & Times Of Wild Bill Burroughs
    • “An indentured servant at 7, Civil War veteran, friend of Buffalo Bill, fond of gunpowder, swords and motorcycles. Learn true stories about NY Regiments during the Civil War and this true American icon!” Great tales and artifacts from the legendary “Wild Bill” Burroughs + lots of other great ACW-related material.
  • Faces of the Victorian Era
    • Victorian era photos with a particular emphasis on women.
  • Joshua Fountain
    • I friggin love this blog. Its own summary puts it well: “sailors & soldiers & cowboys & circles & pyramids using tintype & cabinet card & early photography mostly.” A lot of 20th century stuff in the mix as well but I still have to include it for the wonderful selection of 19th century photos from all over the world.
  • Tuesday Johnson’s Historical Indulgences
    • Not as frequently updated lately as in its glory days, but tons of awesome and unusual portrait photos from the 19th-early 20th century.
  • Civil War Era Fashions
  • Faces of War
    • ACW photographs from the collection of author and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ron Coddington.
  • SC Confederate
    • A lot of reblogs but a nice compendium of ACW-related material from a variety of sources. I don’t always see eye-to-eye politically but respect all the same.
  • Civil War Saga
    • Good blog, not updated all that regularly. Quality over quantity, right?
  • History in Full Color
    • colorizations of historic B&W images, including lots of ACW stuff.
  • All Things Lincoln
    • Lincoln Lincoln Lincoln Lincoln Lincoln Lincoln (hope you like Lincoln)
  • Badass Civil War Beards
    • There are beards, they are from the Civil War, and they are indeed badass.

10 school year's resolutions
  1. stop comparing scores, grades, ec’s, pretty much everything. don’t ask people what their scores were! you will either gloat or feel bad about yourself. just don’t do it.
  2. reading makes you happy! reading novels is the best thing you do and you forget to do it! stop forgetting! read! read!
  3. go to bed before 10:30 every night
  4. reduce stress-related procrastination. practice calming down, sitting down, and doing your work, instead of manically power-walking around your house to nicki minaj
  5. remember that you are smart, usually nice, and absolutely capable of kicking ass in school
  6. drink more water, eat breakfast, & pack lunch
  7. spend 20 minutes writing / drawing in your journal every night. you will feel like a pulitzer prize winning author / fernando botero if you do this. it will be great.
  8. reread number 5
  9. do more work on the weekends
  10. reread number 8

We wanted to be, in the words of one of the musical’s songs, “in the room where it happens” to see whether it earns the raves it has received — and my ticket money as one who is too impatient to wait for the movie version.

I also wanted to see if the production is guilty, as some critics have charged, of “Founders chic,” the practice of over-glorifying our nation’s Founding Fathers (and thanks to modern DNA tests, we’re learning more about who some of them fathered), especially when judged by today’s standards of racism, sexism and other culture war issues.

Those are legitimate concerns, in my view, although they also call upon us to judge people by the standards of their day, as much as ours, which is not always comfortable.

For example, Harvard history and law professor Annette Gordon-Reed, a Pulitzer-Prize-winning author who has been credited with reopening debate over whether Thomas Jefferson had a sexual relationship with slave Sally Hemings, said she loves the musical yet has qualms.

“Imagine ‘Hamilton’ with white actors,” she wrote in a blog of the National Council on Public History. “Would the rosy view of the founding era grate?”

Good question. The show’s nontraditional casting of mostly nonwhites to portray white historical figures is timely, refreshing and enticingly ironic. It enables us to have a bit of emotional distance to see, for example, white slave owners portrayed by black or Hispanic actors.

But as a product and reflection of hip-hop culture, the play defies attempts to imagine it with a traditionally white cast. “Hamilton” sets out to be more than that. Its multiracial cast and Miranda’s lyrics seamlessly connect rap compositions with storytelling in a way that respects and renews the nation’s founding narratives.

This, in short, is a patriotic production that, among other messages, conveys the notion that U.S. history is not for whites only. It is U.S. history reimagined for an era in which people of color increasingly are taking more responsibility for a multiracial future — all the way up to the White House.

—  ‘Hamilton’ is even better than its hype (Chicago Tribune)
A Gay Angel? by Annie Dillard

In 1792, Annie Dillard, the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of Pilgrim At Tinker Creek wrote the essay, “A Gay Angel?”, a work which she considered to be her magnum opus– describing it as “hilarious,” “a real study of the human character,” and “soap.” However, unfortunately the manuscript was lost and until this day has yet to be published. However, after a concerted effort involving “bribery, intimidation, and raw sexual power,” the manuscript has been recovered and it presented here in its entirety. So without further ado, “A Gay Angel?” by Annie Dillard.

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30 writers talks about God

  1. Sir Arthur C. Clarke, Science Fiction Writer
  2. Nadine Gordimer, Nobel Laureate in Literature
  3. Professor Isaac Asimov, Author and Biochemist
  4. Arthur Miller, Pulitzer Prize-Winning Playwright
  5. Wole Soyinka, Nobel Laureate in Literature
  6. Gore Vidal, Award-Winning Novelist and Political Activist
  7. Douglas Adams, Best-Selling Science Fiction Writer
  8. Professor Germaine Greer, Writer and Feminist
  9. Iain Banks, Best-Selling Fiction Writer
  10. José Saramago, Nobel Laureate in Literature
  11. Sir Terry Pratchett, NYT Best-Selling Novelist
  12. Ken Follett, NYT Best-Selling Author
  13. Ian McEwan, Man Booker Prize-Winning Novelist
  14. Andrew Motion, Poet Laureate (1999-2009)
  15. Professor Martin Amis, Award-Winning Novelist
  16. Michel Houellebecq, Goncourt Prize-Winning French Novelist
  17. Philip Roth, Man Booker Prize-Winning Novelist
  18. Margaret Atwood, Booker Prize-Winning Author and Poet
  19. Sir Salman Rushdie, Booker Prize-Winning Novelist
  20. Norman MacCaig, Renowned Scottish Poet
  21. Phillip Pullman, Best-Selling British Author
  22. Dr Matt Ridley, Award-Winning Science Writer
  23. Harold Pinter, Nobel Laureate in Literature
  24. Howard Brenton, Award-Winning English Playwright
  25. Tariq Ali, Award-Winning Writer and Filmmaker
  26. Theodore Dalrymple, English Writer and Psychiatrist
  27. Roddy Doyle, Booker Prize-Winning Novelist
  28. Redmond O’Hanlon FRSL, British Writer and Scholar
  29. Diana Athill, Award-Winning Author and Literary Editor
  30. Christopher Hitchens, Best-Selling Author, Award-Winning Columnist