Today, I’m grateful for friends who send me links and book suggestions – making my life wonderful by these seemingly mundane acts.
Ife put me on to Nell Zink’s books. I read The Wallcreeper this week, and wow! Go find! He also introduced me to Zadie Smith’s essays recently. This one is about Joy. What it means, the other side of it, i.e., why it is just as painful.
Uche sends me wonderful gems such as The Coddling of the American Mind about the possible disasters of ‘hypersensitivity’ online and in Colleges. Then this gorgeous story that moved me so much about the author’s journey to becoming a writer/editor. I think that more people than not will relate with the story; in the words of Titilope Sonuga:
Somewhere there is a writer whose finger tips tap a calculator all day, and there are no stories left to tell at night. Somewhere there is an artist daydreaming about wet paint dripping down a cubicle wall. Somewhere there is a singer whose voice is hoarse from repeating fast food orders. Somewhere there is a dancer whose body moves with the rhythm of a mop across marble floor. We are all dreamers, and morning comes too soon.
Here is a poem written by our very own Kov.
This man saw his dead mother in an old Google Street view photo. It reminded me a bit of the show, Black Mirror and the place of advancing technology when it comes to handling grief. How ‘easy’ it is revisit old conversations, memories, etc. Everything’s in the cloud.
In the fiction world where I am the most comfortable, here are a few stories I enjoyed a lot recently:
- The Republic of Bad Taste by Jonathan Franzen. This one made me gush a lot! If you read only one, let it be this one.
- Los Angeles by Ling Ma. This is a story about a woman who lives with her husband all her ex-boyfriends.
- Spider the Artist by Nnedi Okorafor. Oldie, but goodie.
- The Invention of Seperate People by Kevin Brockmeier. Plausible.
I liked this article about Sex and the Muslim feminist a lot because it addresses a part of the movement that I had noticed, worriedly, recently:
To bolster her argument, Hills presents findings from hundreds of interviews, tales of women who have felt that they have to pretend to be more sexual than they are in order to fit into the ideal of the cool, hip feminist. Magazines marketed to women bolster this paradigm, pushing the achievement of orgasms, adventurous sex lives, and the constant incorporation of novelty as the basis for a good and even healthy sexual life. All of this, Hills concludes, has led to the transformation of women from sexual objects to sexual subjects. While the former were policed by other people, the latter police themselves, watching and regulating their own behavior in order to create for themselves an identity that fits the cultural ideal.
I love letters. I love emails. I love long letters sent via email. Here is a post that made me feel even better about letters.
This article is about the danger in the rise of what the author terms ‘philanthrocapitalism’, using Zuckerberg’s recent announcement as background.
My love for Arundhati Roy is no news. This is about her meeting Edward Snowden and Daniel Ellsberg in Moscow. I find her insight amazing.
What sort of love is this love that we have for countries? What sort of country is it that will ever live up to our dreams? What sort of dreams were these that have been broken? Isn’t the greatness of great nations directly proportionate to their ability to be ruthless, genocidal? Doesn’t the height of a country’s “success” usually also mark the depths of its moral failure? And what about our failure? Writers, artists, radicals, anti-nationals, mavericks, malcontents – what of the failure of our imaginations? What of our failure to replace the idea of flags and countries with a less lethal Object of Love? Human beings seem unable to live without war, but they are also unable to live without love. So the question is, what shall we love?
What if men and women changed roles? Watch.
And here is Angelique Kidjo belting out Tumba which has been on repeat too many times lately. (Sorry, just the audi0.)
Thanks for sticking it to the end.. if there’s something you think I should read, please drop a comment!