Interesting Reads | 5.31.2013

in which I share links to things that caught my attention

Erotic Republic
By Afshin Shahi
From Foreign Policy

A surprising sexual revolution is underway in Iran. Afshin Shahi shines a small spotlight on the revolution with some interesting data.

Chasing fireflies in rural twilight
By Andrea Badgley
From Butterfly Mind

I hope you enjoy Badgley’s well-timed childhood reverie on her excellent creative nonfiction blog.

Company Man
By David Sedaris
From The New Yorker

Another Interesting Reads feature and another David Sedaris piece. Maybe it’s because he’s now middle aged, but this is a far tamer piece that what made him famous. All the more, I was still entertained while reading it.

Have you read anything interesting lately?

Interesting Reads | 3.20.2013

in which I share links to things that caught my attention

A Box of Puppies by Lena Dunham
The New Yorker 

I’m guessing this is a teaser for her forthcoming book. It’s a very good read. Please check it out ASAP!

Don’t be surprised when you see my own personal essay on childhood pets in a couple weeks. I was actually inspired by Sloane Crosley’s essay in How Did You Get This Number. Also, this pretty much confirms what my newest feature will be: Head to Head, a comparison of books with similar themes, concepts or press coverage. (I bet you can’t guess that my other planned Head to Head will be Sandberg vs. Slaughter. I love Slaughter’s name in this context.)

Taylor Swift’s Telltale Heart
Vanity Fair 

Nancy Jo Sales’ interview that I referenced here has been posted online this week. It’s at once a flattering look and a not-so-flattering look at Swift behind the scenes. It made me far less sympathetic to her, and made me question Sales motives. In the article, Sales mentions Swifts’ Grammy appearance, but apparently doesn’t ask her why she makes her relationships (or the end of her relationships) public in such a manner if she doesn’t want to deal with any negative press about how much she dates. It leads me to believe her “feud” with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler is purely promotional.

What Friedan Changed
The New Yorker 

I can’t describe the changes that have taken place since The Feminine Mystique was published 50 years ago any better than Katie Roiphe did.

When my mother was a child, her father told her that ‘Only ugly women become lawyers.’ That was the world she grew up in. And I grew up in a world where my mother removed the Barbie Beauty Palace that my grandfather gave me, and told me the next morning, when I got up and was eager to play with it, that it had been lost.” The audience—a diverse group of about ten men and fifty women, of second- and third-wave vintages—laughed. “And then my daughter, we were watching the Obama–Hillary Presidential election, she was tiny, like five, and she was a big Obama supporter. And I said, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if there was a woman President?’ And she looked at me disdainfully and said, ‘Mom, of course there’s been a woman President.’ In that short time we went from ‘Only ugly women become lawyers’ to ‘Of course there’s been a woman President’ in a five-year-old girl.”

Harry Stamps Obituary
Sun Herald 

This is a funny and touching obituary written for a man who would have lived in obscurity outside his Mississippi-area home if not for his daughter’s excellent writing.

Have you read anything interesting lately? What do you think of Lena Dunnham’s essay?

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