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I Wanna Be Literated! 109
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A critical evaluation of Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl by Carrie Brownstein. The closest I ever got to seeing Sleater-Kinney was seeing Wild Flag play. Standing on the balcony, waiting through the opener’s set, there was Carrie Brownstein standing on the sidelines of the stage watching the set as well. I wondered if we’d get to interact with her. “She’s a rock star,” my then-girlfriend reminded me. After the show, much to my surprise, a lot of people stayed...

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Wednesday, 25 May 2016
I Wanna Be Literated 108
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A critical evaluation of Funny Girl by Nick Hornby. I owe a great deal to Nick Hornby, partly for writing one of the greatest movies ever (no, it’s not the new one), but mostly for getting me into reading books in the first place. This happened many years ago and even though I’ve had my favorites of his over the years, every book has managed to strike a chord within me. Whenever I thought I’d have a character or a...

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Friday, 13 May 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 107
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A critical evaluation of Under The Big Black Sun: A Personal History of L.A. Punk by John Doe with Tom DeSavia and friends, published by Da Capo Press While the stories are (almost) never the same, it’s pretty surprising how consistently structured and formulaic most rock biosand scene expositions are; be it the story of one artist or the collected stories of many, the authors of such books often attempt to condense the finer points of “what happened” down into...

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Friday, 06 May 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 106
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A critical evaluation of Tim Ginger by Julian Hanshaw. Do you know why it’s probably a good idea for anyone interested in comics to stay away from the mainstream DC/Marvel stuff? Because not in a million years would you read a book like Tim Ginger if you did. The concept of Tim Ginger is both unique, extravagant and also very simple at the same time. It deals with a topic that most of us don’t think about which is parenthood,...

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Wednesday, 20 April 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 105
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A critical evaluation of Renée by Ludovic Debeurme. Readers need to buckle up and strap on their helmets, because this book is going to take you on an emotional ride and it’s going to get uncomfortable. Renée should be applauded for getting so many things right in a medium that is honestly either misunderstood or under-appreciated. Who says comics can’t look fresh and tug at your heartstrings in a disturbing way? There are a lot of ideas floating around in...

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Wednesday, 20 April 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 104
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A critical evaluation of NOFX: The Hepatitis Bathtub and Other Stories by NOFX and Jeff Alulis, published by Da Capo Press. As “Fat” Mike Burkett says himself in the final chapter of NOFX: The Hepatitis Bathtub and Other Stories, “I guess when a person tells one fucked-up story it sounds believable, but a series of fucked-up stories back to back sounds too weird to be true. Collectively, NOFX have enough fucked up stories that no one ever knows what to...

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Tuesday, 12 April 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 102
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A critical evaluation of Human Society in Ethics and Politics by Bertrand Russell. Above all, one has always been able to count on Betrand Russell to speak his mind no matter what the consequences may be, historically. While he sometimes wrote on very specific topics like education or western philosophy, on other occasions he covered much broader subjects like in this book, Human Society in Ethics and Politics. I suppose this tendency to speak freely had gained him a reputation...

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Tuesday, 29 March 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 101
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A critical evaluation of Let’s Go To Hell: Scattered Memories of the Butthole Surfers by James Burns, published by Cheap Drugs. Whether it was because of the book’s great quality or simply because it was the first to address the merits of the bands which erupted out of the American underground music scene in the 1980s, Michael Azerrad’s Our Band Could Be Your Life truly did set a standard that any other book which intended to cover any of the...

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Tuesday, 22 March 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 099
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A critical evaluation of On Education by Bertrand Russell. Bertrand Russell’s irreverent take on social institution continues through On Education. Here, as expected, Russell takes a very liberal approach regarding how children should be educated and considers the value of ornamental and practical education and its goals (“Hamlet, on the other hand, will not be much use in practical life, except in those rare cases where a man is called upon to kill his uncle”). It also bares noting that...

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Friday, 26 February 2016
I Wanna Be Literated! 097
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Title: The Method of Freedom: An Errico Malatesta Reader Author: Errico Malatesta AK Press has been doing scholars a service these past few years by putting out some pretty stellar anthologies of some of anarchism’s greatest writers. First it was Proudhon and the Property is Theft! anthology. Then, there was Kropotkin’s Direct Struggle Against Capital. Both edited by Iain McKaye and both informative and thorough. But this anthology on Errico Malatesta takes the cake.  I don’t...

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Tuesday, 26 January 2016