AltWeeklies Wire

Barbara Ehrenreich's Latest Book Tackles Our Oppressive Optimismnew

Rather than focus on some particular tool of oppression that's misled the masses into believing they're happy, in Bright-Sided Ehrenreich trains her ire on happiness itself.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  10-19-2009  |  Nonfiction

How Exactly is Diablo Cody's Update of the Rape-Revenge Shocker 'Feminist'?new

In the earlier rape-revenge movies, patriarchy was an evil to be overcome. In Jennifer's Body, on the other hand, an opening voice-over tells us that "hell is a teenaged girl"—or more precisely, the friendships between teenage girls. Cody claims that's feminist, but I must confess, I don't see it.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  09-28-2009  |  Reviews

'Tales Designed to Thrizzle' Turns Boob-Tube Tropes Into Artnew

Tales Designed to Thrizzle is a monument not only to silliness, but to craft -- which is perhaps the way in which it most clearly departs from its TV inspirations. With few exceptions such as Terry Gilliam's Flying Circus animations, TV doesn't pay attention to visual aesthetics the way Kupperman does here.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  07-20-2009  |  Nonfiction

Leaving Camp: Antony & the Johnsons 'The Crying Light'new

Antony Hegarty sings earnest torch songs for the natural world.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  01-26-2009  |  Reviews

'Torchwood' Gives Fan Fiction its Headnew

The BBC sci-fi show isn't so much a TV series as a fangirl's wet dream. Where shows like Star Trek and Buffy merely inspired fan ­fiction, Torchwood gives the impression of having been inspired by it.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  10-06-2008  |  TV

'Potential' Serves Teen Angst, Straight Upnew

Ariel Schrag didn't survive the Holocaust or flee the Ayatollah, but her comics find meaning all the same.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  06-24-2008  |  Nonfiction

Ashanti Proves She's Out of Step on 'The Declaration'new

Hip-hop and R & B merged years ago, but Ashanti's still playing catch-up.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  06-16-2008  |  Reviews

What Mary Roach Doesn't Want to Talk About in 'Bonk'new

Sadism recognizes taboo and guilt and shame; the transgression is the point. But for science, and for Roach, taboo is simply superstition, a roadblock the repressed throw up between sex and pleasure, and between research and its funding.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  04-28-2008  |  Nonfiction

Pulp Pornnew

Patrick Conlon and Michael Manning's long-awaited sequel to the sexy sci-fi comic Tranceptor.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  01-15-2008  |  Fiction

'See You in Court' Makes the Case for More Democracynew

What starts as an argument that Republicans are responsible for out-of-control litigation ends up as a sharp critique of the entire American system.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  11-05-2007  |  Nonfiction

Country Means Never Having to Say You're Sorrynew

Why Merle Haggard can make a middling detour into bluegrass and still bounce back.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  10-22-2007  |  Reviews

In R&B, Get Big or Go Homenew

Brooke Valentine's innovative major-label debut posted numbers any indie would kill for -- so who wants to put out her next record?
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  08-20-2007  |  Music

'Pushed': The Obstetric-Industrial Complexnew

Jennifer Block's expose on birth in America just emphasizes how little the problems of American obstetrics have changed.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  07-02-2007  |  Nonfiction

Power to the Cluelessnew

The politics of bisexuality aren't as complicated as you'd think.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  03-06-2007  |  Nonfiction

From MLK to Jay-Znew

An attempt at understanding contemporary black male identity.
Chicago Reader  |  Noah Berlatsky  |  02-06-2007  |  Nonfiction

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