Research psychologist Cordelia Fine looks at what the data does and doesn’t show, and she reminds us about the questions that weren’t asked when all those stories and headlines were written last week.
“Eventually—or so goes the strategy—people won’t be able to imagine having their options defined by a programming grid. Not coincidentally, Netflix has been vying with Amazon to become the premiere source of streaming series for young children, for whom having to wait for new episodes of their favorite shows to air is unfathomable.”
“[He] was one of Egypt’s best colloquial Arabic poets of the second half of the twentieth century, and was known [as] … one of the main voices of opposition since 1967, when he wrote his famous poems on the Six Day War. His fiery words expressed Egyptians’ and Arabs’ anger towards milestone events such as the 1967 defeat against Israel and the 1979 peace treaty with Israel.”
“The century-old home of Egypt’s mummies and King Tutankhamun’s treasures is trying to make the best out of the worst times of political turmoil. But the Egyptian Museum is taking a hammering on multiple levels, from riots on its doorstep to funding so meager it can’t keep up paper clip supplies for its staff.”
“Differences in the way various languages talk about the present and future [i.e., verb tense] could help explain why Germans urge free-spending Greeks to adopt their fiscal discipline, and why Americans are baffled by China’s low consumption and high savings rates, according to research published [last spring].”
Artistic director Robert Battle, looking to expand the repertoire and stylistic range of a troupe that had become a bit predictable, engaged McGregor to stage his stark and hyperkinetic Chroma on the Ailey dancers. They’re the first non-classical group to perform the work – and (to McGregor’s happiness) the first that’s dark-skinned.
“He’s choreographed such musical hits as Rock of Ages, Dreamgirls, … and Blades of Glory. Now Kevin Wilson is taking on a new venture: choreographing what has been called ‘The Greatest Show on Earth.’ Wondering how this creative director pulls together a cast and crew that includes everything from clowns to a horse named ‘Comanche?’ We wondered, too.”
“Among the pools of sweat, ripe brie, knotted vines, hot stones, damp glades and chocolatey tobacco in this year’s entries, it was the exploding supernovas of Manil Suri’s third novel, The City of Devi, that clinched him the most dreaded award in the world of books: the Literary Review bad sex prize.”
“The real goal, in a larger perspective, is how to de-monetize art. It’s too late for Detroit to think about such things—any attempt to keep its art out of the market would be vigorously protested by the city’s creditors—but the Detroit crisis has people thinking about how to avert such things in the future.”
“A figure less than $2 billion is likely to inflame the passions of bondholders, unions and other creditors who see DIA masterpieces as a prime source for recovering the billions they are owed by the city. It also increases the chances that a court battle over the fate of the DIA will become even more contentious as Kevyn Orr prepares his plan of adjustment to restructure city finances.”
“‘A one-time infusion of cash by selling an asset,’ he [wrote], would have only delayed the city’s ‘inevitable financial failure’ unless it could have also come up with a sustainable way to enhance income and reduce expenses. Judge Rhodes added that in considering selling assets, a city ‘must take extreme care that the asset is truly unnecessary in carrying out its mission’.”