It’s Spring term and I find myself without time and energy to do many rewarding activities, like keeping up-to-date with my news feeds and maintaining this blog, but I have finally collected a few items to share.
Last week, Inside Higher Ed featured a story on the efforts of librarians to archive internet documents so that scholars in the future have the same kind of access to those texts as they do to print materials. The article is a good illustration as to why librarianship needs to be a professional and academic field, no matter what some in college administration might think.
Also last week, at The Atlantic, Ta-Nehisi Coates has an incisive blog post challenging assertions of “black privilege” and anti-affirmative action politics. The most salient point is that most who see themselves as victims of discrimination as a result of affirmative action also fail to see their own privilege and how being white has historically been a benefit in America.
And here’s another moment of mundane beauty in Spacing Toronto’s “Street Scene” series.
Finally, some cool and fun looking cosplay (via Comics.Hockey.Boobs) (Update: here’s more).
Items that I have been compiling.
From the world of academia:
- Last week, Michelle Obama gave a little noted talk encouraging study abroad for American college students. Her focus on China is predictable, but I do appreciate that she seems to have grounded that in a broader appeal. It isn’t easy getting Western students to leave the comforts of home, but maybe as the university attracts more international students itself, that will change.
- On her Cocktail Party Physics blog, Jennifer Ouellette has a great post on Veronica Mars as a model for girls in science.
- rabble.ca has an interesting post about the University of Toronto General Assembly, which is an attempt on the part of students, faculty, staff, and community to build an alternate governing model for the university.
Turning to comics:
- Via Ragnell on Written World, is a link to this Metrokitty comic on the “paper mirror” which succinctly explains why diversity in comics matters.
- On the other side of that debate, Gail Simone on her tumblr blog, tangles with an aspiring comics writer regarding his desire not to be compelled to write a comics with a gay hero.
- Project:Rooftop recently featured this cool Victorian Batman by Matthew Humphreys.
- Finally, it isn’t really news anymore, but I learned of the new Batman film casting via Comics Alliance. Right now, I am mostly interested to know what it means that Anne Hathaway has been cast as “Selina Kyle” rather than as Catwoman.
And in urban geography, via Inhabitat, Washington DC unveiled a bike station adjacent to Union Station. On the Spacing Magazine blog, Alex Bozikovic, looks at an interesting contest to design wildlife pathways for major roads and highways. Some very cool ideas. And in my feed at least, via ProgGrrl on Twitter, I found this interesting map showing where in the U.S. it make more sense to rent and where it makes more sense to buy. Culturally, of course, in the U.S. ownership is always assumed to be better.
An eclectic list of items from my feeds:
At OregonLive, Shawn Levy covers the Portland premiere of IFC’s Portlandia, which airs this Friday on the channel.
Meanwhile, via Publisher’s Weekly on Twitter, is news of India’s first comic convention.
From Spacing Magazine on Twitter is a pointer to a study that suggests that bicycling infrastructure contributes more to economic development than does similar building for cars.
Another Twitter link, this one to Foreign Policy from ed bice (via ProgGrrl), and to an article by Marc Lynch taking an early look at social media and the current political situation in Tunisia. As a high school student I worked on an Amnesty International campaign to free a political prisoner in Tunisia, an individual who was eventually released, which does not happen most of the time. So, I have a slight personal connection to issues of freedom and democracy in that country that has raised my interest in what’s happening now.
Finally, Torontoist has this neat work of graffiti.
A few short items today:
First, the Arsenal.com match report on the Gunners 6-0 thrashing of Sporting Braga in the Champions League today.
Next, a nice feature on Metric by Jer Fairall in PopMatters. An excerpt from the conversation with Emily Haines:
“[New Wave] was just where we were at. That’s what we heard, that’s what we wanted: my synth dreams that will one day come true of truly expressing my inner synth geek one day will happen. It’s not like you make a strategic move, it’s like you do what you wanna do and what feels right to you. I love the garage rock stuff but I wasn’t gonna suddenly just drop what Jimmy and I have been developing, which is this total love of electro and dance music and trying to bring those New Wave sounds and the songwriting and the energy of rock and roll all together. Dance rock is not a new idea now, but it’s hard to try and express that in front of 20 people, it feels kinda stupid, but that’s part of the test. You just keep doing it. I’m glad we didn’t give up. It was hard to make a synth look rock and roll for a minute, but it worked out.”
The article provides a condensed history of the band, with a particular look at Metric’s place in the world of digital music and their recent Hollywood entanglements.
Finally, this from Inhabitat is just cool.