April 21, 2015

Tin House's winning tote

Tin House’s winning tote

The Washington Post‘s Tehran correspondent Jason Rezaian, who’s been in prison in Iran since July, is now facing formal charges, including espionage.

Pulitzers were just announced—winners include Elizabeth Kolbert for The Sixth Extinction and Anthony Doerr for All the Light We Cannot See.

Michael Eric Dyson has attempted a demolition job on Cornel West in the New Republic, presenting West’s criticisms of the Obama presidency as the whining of a “spurned” and “embittered” political lover who “should have understood that Obama had had similar trysts with many others.” West’s intellectual trajectory, Dyson writes, has been in steep decline for years: Where once he “rode the beast of philosophy with linguistic panache as he snagged deep concepts and big thinkers in his theoretical lasso,” he now resembles a washed-up Mike Tyson, “given to biting our ears with personal attacks rather than bending our minds with fresh and powerful scholarship.” Not Tyson but Ali, Dave Zirin rejoins in the Nation, further noting that Dyson’s feelings toward West seem uncannily like those he attributes to West in relation to Obama, and that “Dyson never forgoes taking a roundhouse punch, even when just a jab will do.”

In the final of Game of Totes at Housing Works last night, Tin House prevailed over several formidable opponents, including The New Inquiry‘s bronze winner, the misandry tote. Less tangible treasures were available from the Library of Congress, which has posted some of its Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature online. There’s Audre Lorde and Gwendolyn Brooks and Elizabeth Bishop, and we could go on…

“More of a ‘backside story’ than an ‘inside story'”: Julian Assange turns book critic, attacking Luke Harding’s The Snowden Files—which apparently fetched $700,000 as the basis of an upcoming Oliver Stone movie starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt—as a “walloping fraud”, a vehicle for the Guardian‘s “institutional narcissism”, a “thriller without thrills by the man who wasn’t there”.