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Tag: powell’s

Brian Doherty

In the 1950s, comics meant POW! BAM! superheroes, family-friendly gags, and Sunday funnies, but in the 1960s, inspired by these strips and the satire of MAD magazine, a new generation of creators set out to subvert the medium, and with it, American culture. Their “comix,” spelled that way to distinguish the work from their dime-store contemporaries, presented tales of taboo sex, casual drug use, and a transgressive view of society. Embraced by hippies and legions of future creatives, this subgenre of comic books and strips was printed on out-of-date machinery, published in zines and underground newspapers, and distributed in head shops, in porno stores, and on street corners. Comix often ran afoul of the law, but that would not stop them from casting cultural ripples…

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Jesse Ball in Conversation With Max Porter

Jesse Ball has produced 14 acclaimed works of deeply empathetic absurdism in poetry and fiction. Now, he offers readers his first memoir, one that showcases his “humane curiosity” (James Wood) and invites the reader into a raw and personal account of love, grief, and memory. Inspired by the memoir Édouard Levé put to paper shortly before his death, Autoportrait (Catapult) is an extraordinarily frank and intimate work from one of America’s most brilliant young authors. The subtle power of Ball’s voice conjures the richness of everyday life. On each page, half-remembered moments are woven together with the joys and triumphs — and the mistakes and humiliations, too — that somehow tell us who we are and why we are here. Held at the same height…

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Michael Pollan / TICKETED EVENT

From Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma and How to Change Your Mind, comes a radical challenge to how we think about drugs, and an exploration into the powerful human attraction to psychoactive plants — and the equally powerful taboos. Of all the things humans rely on plants for — sustenance, beauty, medicine, fragrance, flavor, fiber — surely the most curious is our use of them to change consciousness: to stimulate or calm, fiddle with or completely alter, the qualities of our mental experience. Take coffee and tea: People around the world rely on caffeine to sharpen their minds. But we do not usually think of caffeine as a drug, or our daily use as an addiction, because it is legal and socially acceptable.…

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Jon Raymond in Conversation With Leni Zumas

Denial (Simon & Schuster) is a futuristic thriller about climate change by Jon Raymond, the acclaimed screenwriter of First Cow, Meek’s Cutoff, and HBO’s Mildred Pierce. The year is 2052. Climate change has had a predictably devastating effect: Venice submerged, cyclones in Oklahoma, megafires in South America. Yet it could be much worse. Two decades earlier, the global protest movement known as the Upheavals helped break the planet’s fossil fuel dependency, and the subsequent Nuremberg-like Toronto Trials convicted the most powerful oil executives and lobbyists for crimes against the environment. Not all of them. A few executives escaped arrest and went into hiding, including pipeline mastermind Robert Cave. Now, a Pacific Northwest journalist named Jack Henry who works for a struggling media company has received…

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W. Kamau Bell & Kate Schatz in Conversation With Megan Rapinoe

W. Kamau Bell and Kate Schatz’s Do the Work! (Workman) is a hands-on workbook for anyone overwhelmed by racial injustice, who feels shocked by all the American histories they never learned, and who keeps asking the question “what can I DOOOOOO?!” Packed with humorous, thought-provoking activities — all are rooted in history and contemporary social justice concepts — Bell and Schatz’s new book helps readers move from “What can I do?” to… you know… actually doing the work. Revelatory and thought-provoking, their highly illustrated, highly informative interactive workbook gives readers a unique, hands-on understanding of systemic racism — and how we can dismantle it. Packed with activities, games, illustrations, comics, and eye-opening conversation, Do the Work! challenges readers to think critically and act effectively. Try…

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Marilyn Milne & Linda Kirk

In the 1960s, Tillamook County, Oregon was at war with itself. As the regional dairy industry shifted from small local factories to larger consolidated factories, and as profit margins for milk and cheese collapsed, Tillamook farmers found themselves in a financial crisis that fueled multiple disputes. The ensuing Cheese War included lies and secrets, as well as spies, high emotion, a shoving match, and even a death threat. Sisters Marilyn Milne and Linda Kirk, children of the Cheese War, conducted years of research and have integrated it with tales of their experiences as farm kids living through the all-consuming fight. As Americans become ever more interested in food supply chains and ethical consumption, Cheese War (Oregon State) is the story of the very human factors…

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Mikel Jollett

Hollywood Park (Celadon) is a remarkable memoir of a tumultuous life. Mikel Jollett, frontman for The Airborne Toxic Event, was born into one of the country’s most infamous cults, and subjected to a childhood filled with poverty, addiction, and emotional abuse. Yet, ultimately, his is a story of fierce love and family loyalty told in a raw, poetic voice that signals the emergence of a uniquely gifted writer. His story opens in an experimental commune in California, which later morphed into the Church of Synanon, one of the country’s most infamous and dangerous cults. Per the leader’s mandate, all children, including Jollett and his older brother, were separated from their parents when they were six months old, and handed over to the cult’s “School.” When…

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Elisa Albert in Conversation With Kimberly King Parsons

From an author whose writing has been praised as “blistering” (The New Yorker), “virtuosic” (The Washington Post), and “brilliant” (The New York Times) comes a provocative and entertaining novel about a woman who desperately wants a child but struggles to accept the use of assisted reproductive technology — a hilarious and ferocious send-up of feminism, fame, art, commerce, and autonomy. On the eve of her fourth album, singer-songwriter Aviva Rosner is plagued by infertility. The twist: as much as Aviva wants a child, she is wary of technological conception, and has poured her ambivalence into her music. As the album makes its way in the world, the shock of the response from fans and critics is at first exciting — and then invasive and strange.…

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Matthew Dickman in Conversation With Chelsea Bieker

Guided by acclaimed poet Matthew Dickman’s signature “clarity and ability to engage” (David Kirby, New York Times), Husbandry (W. W. Norton) is a love song from a father to his children. Written after a separation and during overwhelming single-fatherhood in the early days of COVID-19 lockdowns, Husbandry refuses romantic notions of parenting and embraces all its mess, anguish, humor, fear, boredom, and warmth. Dickman composes these poems entirely in vivid couplets that animate the various domestic pairs of broken-up parents, two sons, love and grief. He explores the terrain of his children’s dreams and nightmares, the almost primal fears that spill into his own, and the residual impacts of his parents’ failures. Threading his anxieties with bright moments of beauty and gratitude, the volume delights…

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Tiana Clark, Vanessa Friedman & Shayla Lawson in Conversation With Katherine Morgan

In May 1962, Helen Gurley Brown’s Sex and the Single Girl sent shockwaves through the United States, selling more than two million copies in three weeks. The future Cosmopolitan Editor-in-Chief’s book promoted the message that a woman’s needs, ambition, and success during her single years could actually take precedence over the search for a husband. While much of Brown’s advice is outdated and even offensive by today’s standards, her central message remains relevant. In their exceptional anthology, Sex and the Single Woman (Harper Perennial), editors Eliza Smith and Haley Swanson bring together insights from many of today’s leading feminist thinkers and writers to pay homage to Brown’s original work and reinterpret it for a new generation. These contributors provide a much-needed reckoning while addressing today’s…

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