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If you've seen Pleasantville--the story of teenagers who are
magically transported from 1990s reality into 1950s television--you know
that its writer-director, Gary Ross, has a sly respe

If the idea of monochrome painting occurred to anyone before the
twentieth century, it would have been understood as a picture of a
monochrome reality, and probably taken as a joke.

Pop music's eternal appeal can be found in one instance out of many:
"This Magic Moment," a 1960 song by The Drifters.

It's always good fun to see a boy wax romantic over the first girl to
give him a handjob--and if the boy should be a black-hatted Jew, the fun
is only improved.

Most of what we know about the life of Miles Davis is either anecdotal
or a matter of official record, and thus not absolutely reliable; but by
all accounts, most pertinently his own, Miles Dav

This Independence Day, the symbolic struggle being waged on thousands of
screens across the Empire pits Reese Witherspoon against Arnold
Schwarzenegger, gooey-sweet girl against impassive (but

When Bob Dylan took the stage at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival, all
leather and Ray-Bans and Beatle boots, and declared emphatically and
(heaven forbid) electrically that he wasn't "gonna work

Not many people can say they changed the world and make it stick. In
Myself Among Others: A Life in Music, George Wein does.

I have often been asked the difference between movie reviews and film
criticism; and after much thought, I've decided the answer is about one
week.

"In society the homosexual's life must be discreetly concealed. As
material for drama, that life must be even more intensely concealed.

Blogs

The Nation and the Center for Community Change partnered together for an essay contest in which young people were asked to submit a photo they found meaningful and an essay explaining the significance of the photo in 500 words.

September 17, 2014

Eric on "The Beatles in Mono" and Reed on how the emphasis on optics skews our democratic priorities.

September 11, 2014

"Outside, the ground separates, / breaking open like sores..."

September 3, 2014

An incomplete list of ten of the best songs ever written about school.

September 3, 2014

A solo Koons exhibition, Danto wrote in 1989, was “a vision of an aesthetic hell.”

September 2, 2014

In honor of Labor Day, here’s a stab at the impossible task of naming the best songs ever written about working people.

August 29, 2014

Eric on this week's concerts and Reed on the media’s coverage of climate change. 

July 21, 2014

These ten songs, taken together, help distill the American experience and make clear both what’s great about the US and what still needs critical attention.

July 2, 2014

On the 25th anniversity of Spike Lee's "Do the Right Thing," America needs to ask itself some hard questions.

June 30, 2014

Eric on this weeks concerts and Reed on Syria's chemical weapons program. 

June 25, 2014