The Two Kinds Of Novelists

Pumpkin Pie Slice

“Cormac McCarthy [is] a novelist who neglects to contact one-night stands after a passionate night of lovemaking, Tom Wolfe one who sends each conquest a handwritten note on monogrammed paper.”

The Terror Of One-Star Book Reviews


Go find a book you love. Click the one-star reviews – there will always be some. Cancel your plans for this evening. But one-star Amazon reviews are more than a space for performance art or green-ink rantings. Some authors believe that they amount to “bullying”.

How Theatre Can Help Science (And Vice Versa)

How Theatre Can Help Science (And Vice Versa)

“With this requirement [for scientists] to perform (student assessment of lecturers’ abilities is now standard), comes an increasing readiness to engage with audiences who might have little understanding of the process of science, but a lot of interest in the message of science. But theatre can engage with science in more ways than simply the technical. The key thing here is that they share a common term and a common tool – that of ‘interpretation’.”

Need Orchestral Backup? There’s An App For That!


“A number of apps provide musical backup, but Cadenza out of Harvard goes a step further, automatically synching a recording of a full live orchestra to your style and tempo in real time. As you begin playing your instrument, the app listens to each note you play and the rhythm and speed in which you play them, calculating and recalibrating a prediction model for when you will play the next note.”

How Did The Language Police Take Over?


“We grammarians who study the English language are not all bow-tie-wearing martinets, but we’re also not flaming liberals who think everything should be allowed. There’s a sensible middle ground where you decide what the rules of Standard English are, on the basis of close study of the way that native speakers use the language.”

The Rise Of Walter Benjamin


“Following his suicide in 1940 at age 48, in Portbou, Spain, his name had been kept alive by a small number of friends and colleagues, the kind of trickle of a readership that hardly suggested he would one day be counted among the most significant and far-ranging critics, essayists, and thinkers of the past 100 years—and one whose reach may still not be completely fathomed.”

How Much Are We Willing To Pay For Music? (Here Are The Data)


“So, the data tells us that consumers are willing to spend somewhere around $45–$65 per year on music, and that the larger a service gets, the lower in that range the number becomes. And these numbers have remained consistent regardless of music format, from CD to download.”

Shirley Temple As Dancer

Shirley Temple dancing

Joan Acocella: “Since Shirley Temple died, a month ago, I’ve read tributes to her adorableness and her courage and her success. … But I haven’t seen much about Temple as a dancer. She was a pretty good one, and a pioneer.”

Why People Are Gullible And Fall For Fake News Stories

Why people are gullible

“Most of us – though unfortunately not all of us – are now aware that Onion articles aren’t real, but the proliferation of online parody and fake news has created an environment where many people are simply accepting fake news as fact. … So why do people believe this crap?” One new study suggests an explanation.

Top Posts From AJBlogs 03.18.14

The Death of Music Journalism, and SXSW
AJBlog: CultureCrash | Published 2014-03-18

Futurisms: Can Italian Futurism Be Saved?
AJBlog: Artopia | Published 2014-03-18

The New Stolen-Art Tracker Opens Its Doors
AJBlog: Real Clear Arts | Published 2014-03-18

Taylor’s Treasure Trove
AJBlog: Dancebeat | Published 2014-03-18

Supportin’ Skorton: Cornell’s Sad Loss is Smithsonian’s Big Gain (with video)
AJBlog: CultureGrrl | Published 2014-03-18



Here’s What’s Really Wrong At The Metropolitan Opera


“In a single season, the company requires more in donations towards annual operating expenses than the New York Philharmonic, BAM, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The New York City Ballet, and Lincoln Center Theater combined! Or, to put it another other way, the Met’s fundraising obligation of $161 million is more money than the National Endowment for the Arts disperses in a single year.”

Sydney Biennale In Disarray


“The month-long exhibition of contemporary art, set to open on Friday, has been marred by a controversy that led to the dumping of a major sponsor, Transfield, and the resignation of the chairman of the Biennale board.”

America’s TV Networks Are Busy Reinventing How They Do Business


“People are consuming content much differently, and that requires the networks to think about how they’re getting audiences to these shows. When you see the leading broadcaster in the business, CBS, doing things outside of their normal wheelhouse, you know that all rules are up for grabs right now.”

Are Readers Of E-Book Better Than Those Who Read Paper?


“According to the survey, 48 percent of UK adults who use e-readers say the technology gets them to read more. In addition to that, 41 percent of respondents reported that being able to look up words they don’t know makes reading easier, and over half say that being able to change the size and appearance of text helps as well.”