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THIS. (From SPONTANEOUS PARTICULARS: THE TELEPATHY OF ARCHIVES by Susan Howe)

THIS. (From SPONTANEOUS PARTICULARS: THE TELEPATHY OF ARCHIVES by Susan Howe)

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"Each collected object or manuscript is a pre-articulate empty theater where a thought may surprise itself at the instant of seeing. Where a thought may hear itself see."

— from SPONTANEOUS PARTICULARS: THE TELEPATHY OF ARCHIVES by Susan Howe 

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TONIGHT AT 8PM in Prospect Heights
"After September the beloved Buzzards Banquet will be going on a Fall/Winter break, so don’t miss this one! 
This month for its first time ever will feature multi-media poetry. There will be mages of literature melting faces with truths and theories. There will be music to die dancing for. Come to Prospect Heights, Soda Bar at 8pm, grab a drink and get your fill of the town’s best emerging talent in words of fiction, poetry and rock’n’roll, before the Banquet goes into hibernation.This month’s performers include:Jennilie BrewsterRich MoyMichele FilgateJason PorterBeth LisickWith music from Milk & Honey”

TONIGHT AT 8PM in Prospect Heights

"After September the beloved Buzzards Banquet will be going on a Fall/Winter break, so don’t miss this one! 

This month for its first time ever will feature multi-media poetry. There will be mages of literature melting faces with truths and theories. There will be music to die dancing for. 

Come to Prospect Heights, Soda Bar at 8pm, grab a drink and get your fill of the town’s best emerging talent in words of fiction, poetry and rock’n’roll, before the Banquet goes into hibernation.

This month’s performers include:

Jennilie Brewster
Rich Moy
Michele Filgate
Jason Porter
Beth Lisick

With music from Milk & Honey”

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It’s like Caitlin Moran took the words out of my head. (From HOW TO BE A WOMAN.)

It’s like Caitlin Moran took the words out of my head. (From HOW TO BE A WOMAN.)

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Great Nonfiction Books by Female Writers

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The 2014 Longlist for the National Book Award for Nonfiction was announced today, and it’s a very disappointing and stodgy list . Roz Chast is on there (yay!) but it says something about one of the most prestigious literary awards in America that the judges chose NINE books by men and one book by a woman. Also of note: the lack of diversity. Perhaps most disturbing is that the list comes across as very Dad-centric—books you’d buy for your father. It’s heavy on history, current events, and biography, and sadly lacking when it comes to literary journalism, essays, and memoirs. 

So what can we do? Complain. Continue to complain. Write think pieces. Or make our own lists. 

Here are some great nonfiction books by female writers. I put an asterisk next to the books that came out this year and were eligible for the award. This is by no means a complete list. I could go on and on. 

Check out Vela Magazine’s list for even more recommendations. 

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"We dream much of paradise, or rather of a number of successive paradises, but each of them is, long before we die, a paradise lost, in which we should feel ourselves lost too."

— from SODOM AND GOMORRAH by Marcel Proust

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"Doubtless I had long been conditioned, by the powerful impression made on my imagination and my faculty for emotion by the example of Swann, to believe in the truth of what I feared rather than of what I should have wished."

— from SODOM AND GOMORRAH by Marcel Proust 

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"…we acquire a true knowledge only of things that we are obliged to re-create by thought, things that are hidden from us in everyday life…"

— from SODOM AND GOMORRAH by Marcel Proust

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What should you read this September? Listen to my latest segment on NHPR’s Word of Mouth. There are so many good books coming out this month.

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BNR: My niece and nephew are obsessed. How do you feel about the current world in which your children are being raised in, with art and the potential for art?

SR: I think it’s great. My daughter Anna–I should write an essay about this. She said recently while going to school, she put on something for school and she looked nice. I said, “You look pretty, Anna.” She said “Mom, I don’t go to school to look pretty. I go to school to learn.” Very matter of fact.

BNR: How old is she?

SR: She’s 8. I want to make a T-shirt saying that.

I interviewed Sarah Ruhl for The Barnes & Noble Review.