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For posts before June 2012, please follow these links to our archives.

A Texas lawsuit hinges on this question: What, exactly, are “pickles”?

Baylen J. Linnekin New Food Economy
The Department of State Health Services in Texas limits the definition of “pickle” to cucumbers only, much to the chagrin of small farmers like Anita Patton-McHaney and James McHaney
One couple wants to take advantage of the state’s cottage food law by selling pickled beets, carrots, and other vegetables they grow in their market garden. But the Texas health department says that’s only legal if they want to sell pickled cucumbers

Lillian Hellman’s Days to Come

Jane LaTour ZNet
The great mystery to me, is why the play was a failure. Originally it ran for only 3 days, and then closed. Hellman was responding to an all-too-common ethical dilemma that persists down to today. Her own sympathies lay with the striking workers.

Gone . . .

Lee Rossi
California poet Lee Rossi explores the impact of toppling old heroes, their myths, their monuments, their wrongs.

Simone Weil, Meditations on a Corpse: Sketch for an Article

Simone Weil New Left Review
A pungent and exhaustive evaluation of the short-lived, pre-war popular front government of France, written on the heels of its demise by the brilliant French writer Simone Weil, with an introduction by the NLR editors.

'Claws' Has the Best Politics on Television

Brenden Gallagher Complex
Representation alone isn’t enough to make a show political. You have to do something with it. Claws finds a way to tie its characters to a broader political narrative in almost every episode.

Operating on the Body Politic

Philip Fried Dispatches from the Poetry Wars
New York poet Philip Fried makes a diagnosis of brain damage to explain the body politic of a certain politician with orange hair.