Joan Marcus

Race, Immigration, and Hamilton: The Relevance of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s New Musical
Kendra James | The Toast
“The cast of Black, Latina, and Asian American leads emphasizes not only the reality of who actually built and expanded America (‘we all know who’s really doing the planting,’ Hamilton spits at Jefferson during Act 2), but also how irrelevant the Founding Fathers’ whiteness is to their claim on the country.”

Questlove on Hamilton and Hip-Hop: It Takes One
Ahmir Questlove Thompson | Rolling Stone
“If you’re a pop-culture obsessive who has spent his life both making things and consuming things that are at the intersection of various art forms (music, television, comedy, politics and technology), and you see a musical that sets you back a step, you want to know what that is, too. If I can’t put my finger on it, it just makes for an itchy finger.”

Ina Garten Does It Herself
Choire Sicha | Eater
“There is something that Ina Garten knows about what we want, or who we want to be, or how we want to feel. ‘There isn’t a letter, there isn’t a recipe, there’s no photograph, there isn’t a font, there isn’t a color, there isn’t a detail that I don’t totally do myself,’ Ina said, so that’s how it’s done.”

The Distributor as Auteur
David Ehrlich | Slate
“When historians of the future try to pinpoint the precise moment that the film industry crawled out of its deathbed and back onto its feet, there’s a good chance they’ll land somewhere in March 2013, when a fledgling distribution company called A24 Films transformed a Harmony Korine movie starring a cornrowed James Franco into a genuine cultural event.”

Me Inc.
Ann Friedman | The New Republic
“Is this crop top on-brand for a networking happy hour? Is this joke tweet-worthy or something I should merely text to a friend? Is this stupid assignment I accepted in order to make rent detracting from my reputation too much? Life is not always on-brand.”

Future Reading
Craig Mod | Aeon
“Containers matter. They shape stories and the experience of stories. Choose the right binding, cloth, trim size, texture of paper, margins and ink, and you will strengthen the bond between reader and text. Choose badly and the object becomes a wedge between reader and text.”

Drake, Fetty Wap, and the Politics of the Co-Sign
Lindsay Zoladz | Vulture
“With each step he takes, Drake is revising the playbook of what is and isn’t acceptable—or achievable—for a pop star of the hip-hop generation. Whatever Drake does becomes the new normal.”

Ellen Page Goes Off-Script
Sam Anderson | The New York Times Magazine

“I often find myself, while watching Page’s films, staring at her forehead. It’s like its own system of expression, signaling quickness and muscularity ... When Page’s emotions begin to rise—skepticism, distress, anger—the forehead becomes correspondingly complex. Those two neat parallel lines swell, protrude, and start to entwine.”

Democracy of Sound: Is GarageBand Good for Music?
Art Tavana | Pitchfork
“Over the last decade, GarageBand has become the Starbucks of digital recording studios: consumer-friendly, global, omnipresent. Pre-programmed into every Apple device, anyone with an iPhone, iPad, or Mac can open the program and record something amazing (or, perhaps more likely, something totally embarrassing).”

Letter to My Younger Brother
Dorell Wright | The Players’ Tribune
“And while we’re talking family, it’s going to be hard for me playing in China this year, because I won’t be around for your rookie season. But I know it’ll be fine. I’ll still be able to watch some games, and when I do, you’re going to get a long text message afterward with all the things I see. I’m sure you’re going to tell me the same thing you said at school: ‘Yeah, my coach told me that already,’ but too bad. I’m never going to stop coaching you and being your big brother.”

Fresh off the Boat Just Aired an Amazingly Revolutionary TV Moment
Dodai Stewart | Fusion
“As someone who’s watched TV for decades, before Fresh off the Boat, I can’t recall the last time I saw an Asian American family sit down at the dinner table together.”

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