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

Fruit May Decrease Risk of Obesity

Alissa Marrapodi www.foodproductdesign.com
Study published in Journal of Nutrition finds fruit, not veggies, associated with lower risks of obesity.

Does Fox's 'Empire' Break Or Bolster Black Stereotypes?

Eric Deggans NPR
Anchored by powerful performances from Oscar nominees Taraji P. Henson and Terrence Howard, Empire features unapologetically black characters operating in a mostly black world. Nielsen says 7.5 million of them are African-American.But that's where the other controversy about Empire emerges. Because some critics say the show has earned its success by trafficking in "badly written dialogue and ham-fisted stereotypes."

This Woman to The Dark Angels

Jared Smith To The Dark Angels
Amid controversies about surveillance from Big Brothers, there's also the matter of what the Little Brothers and Sisters know and exploit. Colorado poet Jared Smith takes an ironic view of what it means to know too much and therefore nothing at all.

From Good Ole Boy to Progressive Activist: One Man's Story

Eleanor J. Bader, Truthout Book Review Truthout
Born into the segregated rural South, James Gustave ("Gus") Speth didn't see the oppression and poverty his black neighbors faced. A confrontation at a northern university with civil-rights advocates in the early 1960s triggered a life-long moral compulsion to support the burgeoning civil rights struggle. The newly minted anti-racist grew into a leading environmentalist, political activist, prolific author and Yale dean. The book under review is his memoir.

Lady Sings the Blues

Walton Muyumba The Atlantic
In her eleventh novel, God Help the Child, Toni Morrison has created what Walton Muyumba calls "a tragicomic jazz opera played out in four parts." Here is his review of this eagerly awaited new work by the artist who is arguably the greatest novelist working in the United States today.

Film Review: Last Days In Viet Nam -- With Liberals Like Rory Kennedy, Who Needs Reactionaries?

Ed Rampell Hollywood Progressive
However, skillful propagandist that Kennedy is, in her effort to whitewash history and try to ferret out something positive in a colossal debacle, there’s something even she can’t hide. Look closely at the newsreel clips as the NVA tanks roll into what was renamed Ho Chi Minh City. Not only are the soldiers jubilant, but look at the smiling faces of the Vietnamese masses as they are being liberated from decades of Japanese, French and Yankee occupation and imperialism.

‘The Wire,’ the burning of Baltimore and the limits of art

Alyssa Rosenberg Washington Post
Pleas from Simon, Andre Royo and Wendell Pierce, among others, are an acknowledgement of the real-world authority we’ve granted to “The Wire,” one of the most venerated shows ever to air on American television.

Abandoned Mine Under Snow

David Salner North American Review
"I learned how to fight the long shifts, the bashed fingers," writes poet David Salner of his mining experiences, but he also sees the beauty of sorrow. An appropriate lyric for May Day.

A Love Story, A War Story and A Story About Brutal Work

Olivia Laing New Statesman
The Patriot Act is a nightmare for immigrants without papers already living precarious lives of dead-end jobs, zero-hour contracts, squats, and physical danger. When a young Asian woman, alone in the U.S., meets an ex-serviceman, himself traumatized by three tours in Iraq and living in a basement flat , the two bond in a tough but brilliant first novel absent stock characters or cartoon emotionality but with a profound and intimate knowledge of life on the margins.