• Jacqueline Rose. Photo: Mia Rose
    May 14, 2021

    Jacqueline Rose’s new book on violence; “Columbia Journalism Review” contributors imagine transforming the industry

    Muumuu House had published a collection of remembrances of Giancarlo DiTrapano, founder of Tyrant Books and New York Tyrant magazine, who died six weeks ago.

    Parul Sehgal considers Jacqueline Rose’s new book, On Violence and Violence Against Women, for the New York Times. In essays reflecting on Harvey Weinstein, sexual harassment, Anna Burns’s Milkman, and Trump’s “Global Gag Rule,” Rose examines “how violence first takes root in the mind” and how it perpetrates “a theft of mental freedom.”

    The new issue of Columbia Journalism Review has been released in a digital edition, “What Is Journalism

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  • Kavita Bedford. Photo: © Christopher Woe
    May 13, 2021

    Lauren Michele Jackson on Richard Wright and “truth-telling”; Kavita Bedford’s novel of freelancing

    For the New Yorker, Lauren Michele Jackson considers Richard Wright’s The Man Who Lived Underground, newly published in full by the Library of America. Jackson notes that the novel “tickles audiences’ appetite for that which feels both timely and, at the same time, transhistorical.” She continues: “In marketing the book’s theme of police violence, the shepherds of the new Library of America edition may be inadvertently reinforcing an old dynamic between readers and Wright, which is a version of the dynamic that plagues readers and Black writers more broadly—namely, that any interest in style

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  • Brandon Taylor. Photo: Bill Adams
    May 12, 2021

    Brandon Taylor on subjectivity, race, and reception; “Publishers Weekly” is hosting a new trade show

    Brandon Taylor, author of the novel Real Life, writes about fiction, reception, and subjectivity, and the “difference between writing about life as a black writer and writing about black life as a black writer.” Reflecting on how his fiction has changed, and looking back at his own early stories, Taylor writes, “I was substituting white subjectivity for my own particular subjectivity and calling it black subjectivity. I was an object in my own mind.” The goal, for Taylor, is to be read as “one person grappling with the difficulty of trying to express.”

    Publishers Weekly is hosting a new trade

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  • Samuel R. Delany
    May 11, 2021

    Samuel R. Delany on writing; Teen Vogue picks Versha Sharma as editor in chief

    In “Why I Write,” at the Yale Review, the pioneering author and critic Samuel R. Delany explains his lifelong engagement with the torturous profession. Of his early years, Delany observes, “I wrote because I began to realize (to borrow William Blake’s words from Proverbs of Hell), ‘Eternity is in love with the productions of time.’ It keeps producing them—and it keeps destroying them.”

    Versha Sharma has been announced as the new editor of Teen Vogue. Sharma was previously the managing editor at NowThis. The hire comes after the previous editor, Alexi McCammond, resigned after an outcry over

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  • Toni Morrison. Photo: Timothy Greenfield Sanders. Knopf/Doubleday
    May 10, 2021

    Tobi Haslett remembers last year’s riots; Michelle Orange’s reading recommendations for “pre-post-pandemic” brain

    At n+1, Tobi Haslett has a powerful essay reflecting on and remembering the uprising in response to the murder of George Floyd, an uprising that is already being played down and repurposed in the media and in national politics. “At the DNC last fall we saw how the uprising may be remembered: a sunny, noble blur of soaring rhetoric and ‘peaceful’ crowds—a fabulous alternative to the rawness on the ground. But certain facts remain; some things can’t be wished away. Too much was born and broken amid the smoke and screams. The least we can do is remember—to try, after the riots, after the speeches,

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  • Jhumpa Lahiri. Photo: Elena Seibert
    May 07, 2021

    Sigrid Nunez on Jhumpa Lahiri’s new novel; Olivia Messer writes about the psychological toll of covering COVID-19

    Eileen Myles considers a new book published by Mack that pairs the photographs of Moyra Davey with those of the late Peter Hujar. Writing about Hujar’s 1978 photo, Wave-Sperlonga, Myles observes: “I look at his oily dark surface, his haptic black sea I don’t think ‘immersive’ like Moyra’s. It’s the Hudson in the seventies. Dirty as fuck.”

    For Defector, The Believer’s features editor Camille Bromley discusses the LA Times’s flawed framing of a story that downplayed the harm done by former Believer editor in chief Joshua Wolf Shenk when he exposed himself during an all-staff Zoom meeting.

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  • Eddie S. Glaude Jr. Photo: Sameer A. Khan
    May 06, 2021

    Eddie S. Glaude Jr. on a revelatory Baldwin essay; an open letter confronting transphobia in the book industry

    At LitHub, Eddie S. Glaude Jr. writes about James Baldwin’s Nothing Personal, in an afterword to a new stand-alone edition of the 1964 Baldwin essay: “The reader gets a sense of the depth of his despair and his desperate hold on to the power of love in what is, by any measure, a loveless world—especially in a country so obsessed with money.” For more Glaude on Baldwin, read this interview with the author in the Fall 2020 issue of Bookforum.

    In an open letter sent to The Bookseller, a group of publishing-industry professionals in the UK condemn transphobia in the literary world: “Here we stand

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  • Joshua Cohen. Photo: Penguin Random House
    May 05, 2021

    Joshua Cohen in conversation with Colm Tóibín; Stacey Abrams’s first romance novels are being reissued

    In The Nation’s Spring Books issue, Elias Rodriques reviews Richard Wright’s posthumously published novel, The Man Who Lived Underground. Rodriques also considers the true story of Herbert C. Wright, a man who retreated underground during the Great Depression because he was out of work: “He stole to support himself in an economy and a country that would not support him. The surrealist, fantastical, and gothic elements of both his story and The Man Who Lived Underground serve to underscore how bizarre and unnatural such a governmental structure should seem.”

    The Guardian has published an

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  • Alison Bechdel. Photo: Elena Seibert.
    May 04, 2021

    The dangers of writing online while female; Alison Bechdel on her new book

    The Guardian covers a new UN report that describes the widespread abuse of female journalists online. “The Chilling: Global Trends in Online Violence Against Women Journalists” was a survey of more than nine-hundred reporters in 125 countries. Unesco, the UN agency that commissioned the study, points out that this abuse has systemic implications: “Online violence against women journalists is designed to belittle, humiliate, and shame; induce fear, silence, and retreat; discredit them professionally, undermining accountability, journalism and trust in facts.”

    The Baffler has excerpted John

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  • Arundhati Roy. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
    May 03, 2021

    Arundhati Roy on India’s “Covid Catastrophe”

    The God of Small Things author Arundhati Roy has written a powerful long essay about India’s “Covid catastrophe” and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s attempts to stifle critics of the government. Writing at The Guardian, Roy offers a dire report on what is happening in India now: “"Crematoriums in Delhi have run out of firewood. The forest department has had to give special permission for the felling of city trees. Desperate people are using whatever kindling they can find. Parks and car parks are being turned into cremation grounds." The essay builds to a sharp critique of Modi’s actions in the

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  • Mensah Demary
    April 30, 2021

    Soft Skull editor in chief Mensah Demary’s plans for the press; Sophie Haigney on citations in fiction

    Soft Skull Press’s editor in chief, Mensah Demary, talks to Catapult about his work at the indie press. Of his plans for the future, he says: “To evolve it into a house of diverse literary artists where each writer feels Soft Skull supports and respects their work. I intend to encourage readers to visit Soft Skull’s backlist and spend some time with it.” The interview is part of Catapult’s Don’t Write Alone vertical, which features resources, advice, and writing opportunities.

    For Commonweal magazine, Anthony Domestico reviews new poetry collections by Michael Robbins (Walkman) and Hannah

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  • Nella Larsen
    April 29, 2021

    Eloghosa Osunde in conversation with Akwaeke Emezi; Revisiting Nella Larsen’s “Passing”

    The Paris Review has posted a conversation between Eloghosa Osunde, the winner of the magazine’s 2021 Plimpton Prize, and Akwaeke Emezi, author of, most recently, The Death of Vivek Oji.

    ProPublica is hiring three journalists for its Abrams Reporting Fellowship. The position is a two-year investigative gig, and pays $75,000 a year, plus benefits. In a call for applicants, ProPublica writes, “Our newsroom zigs where others zag.”

    The Marshall Project has a roundup of writing by incarcerated people about how they survived the COVID-19 pandemic in prison. Bruce Bryant writes from Sing Sing prison

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