It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these posts, which is a shame. I love keeping everyone abreast of the things that I’ve been reading around the web, because it gives you a bit of insight into the person I am outside of my book reviewing.
I’m starting with this because July 10th was Bahamian Independence Day, meaning big celebrations in my house. However, the link isn’t about our Independence Day– instead, it’s about the travel warning that urges young male citizens to “exercise extreme caution” around American police.
If nothing else, that article sets the tone for the heavier things I read this past month. For those who had problems digesting everything in the news over the last month (really over the last 2 years), The Undefeated curated a great playlist of songs that will keep you engaged, while allowing you maintain your sanity. A close friend of mine also wrote on this piece on Christianity and Black Lives Matter When you’ve finished with that, The Atlantic has “An Alternative to the Madness of Proving Police Injustice,” which examines the potential of restorative justice in the aftermath of police killings. Vann uses the term restorative justice as “a process that allows for direct mediation between victims of violence and police perpetrators,” with echoes of South African reconciliation efforts. On second thought, read that after GQ’s investigative journalism on the attempted coverup of the Tamir Rice story.
Changing gears slightly, here’s the recently resurfaced “I Want to be Neenja” video by a former Miss Oregon and ex-‘Apprentice’ contestant. If you choose to watch, please pay special attention to the body language of the only Asian in the room. It’s an older article, but if you want a great piece on the importance on Asian representation read “What I learned from Kristi Yamaguchi.” Tone deaf beauty queens weren’t having the best month, particularly Louise Linton, whose book and associated article about her hellish gap year in Africa went viral for all the wrong reasons.
If we’re talking about Africa and Europe, I can’t possibly overlook the importance of Germany’s apology for the genocide in Namibia. Undoubtedly an overdue apology, but perhaps one that will set a precedent– surely there are more European (and American) apologies that could be made. Because these posts are one big exercise in word association, I’m hoping from Germany over to this Brain Pickings piece on Schopenhauer’s definition of genius, and how it differs from talent. “Talent achieves what others cannot achieve, whereas genius achieves what others cannot imagine,” writes Maria Popova. While this sadly means I’m probably not a genius, I still think it’s a pretty solid distinction.
By now, everyone probably heard about Leslie Jones and the racist Twitter trolls that harassed her after the Ghostbusters premiere. Harassment on Twitter isn’t anything new (remember the time trolls ran Robin Williams’ daughter off twitter after his suicide?), but that doesn’t excuse it’s continued existence. Women continue to bear the brunt of dudebro cyber harassment, and Twitter still hasn’t thought of sufficient ways to handle the problem. While we’re talking about harassment, here’s your regular reminder not to touch people without their permission.
Delving a bit into academia, the NYTimes put together this piece that triggers college PTSD, analyzing how people from non-wealthy backgrounds make unpaid internships work in DC. Along those same lines, The Atlantic published, “Where books are nonexistent,” linking limited access to book stores and libraries in places like Detroit and Southeast Washington D.C. with larger child illiteracy rates.
Continuing down the bookish wormhole, Chimamanda once again proved how much of a boss she is by secretly having a baby. This brought up so many great conversations about what it means to “perform pregnancy,” particularly as a woman in the public sphere. Following the theme of badass literary women, Zadie Smith wrote an incredibly human response to the Brexit craziness. It’ll give a bit of perspective to those outside of the UK, or even outside the EU. For people who have want more bookish goodness, Audible just started a series this month called Authorized, hosted by Ashley Ford, that will have interviews with various authors (Janet Mock and Yaa Gyasi so far).
As always, we celebrate diverse book bloggers here on Brown Books & Green Tea, so I absolutely have to direct you to this post by Word Contessa about the importance of diversity in the reviewer cohort. It’s BRILLIANTLY done.
Alright, that’s it! It was a long post, but hopefully y’all found something worth reading in that dump. July has been a heavy month, and I think that’s probably been reflected in this post. What content has kept you engaged this summer? Drop some links in the comments so I can read them too!