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The Digest of Arts, Culture and Ideas
Updated: 8 min 59 sec ago

How We Live – The Connectedness Problem

April 14, 2014 - 11:11am

“The ubiquity of smartphones, and employers’ insistence that we keep them on, has morphed the traditional workday into something stretchy and inconsistent: Now, even when you are not in the office, you are very likely still working.”

The History Play As Lesson For Today

April 14, 2014 - 11:04am

“The history play, it is believed, derived from the medieval morality play, and one of the welcome features of its popular return is the instructive example it provides an age badly in need of the long view.”

Top Posts From AJBlogs 04.13.14

April 14, 2014 - 2:45am

London’s Hottest Little Theatre (Literally) Gets A New Lease On Life

April 14, 2014 - 2:40am

“The 220-seat Shed auditorium at the National Theatre opened last April and perches jauntily on the river front like an upside-down red wooden cow. What was meant to be a one-off, one-year project has now been granted a three-year stay of execution, taking it until spring 2017.”

Brave New World: STILL Too ‘Controversial’ For Some Americans

April 14, 2014 - 2:36am

“Why would we teach kids what is negative in society? Let’s teach them what is right, to become good citizens and improve the fabric of society.”

Remember That Thing With Amazon And Drones? Not A Joke

April 14, 2014 - 2:33am

“Not only is the delivery drone program happening, but according to the CEO, it’s well underway. ‘The Prime Air team is already flight testing our 5th and 6th generation aerial vehicles, and we are in the design phase on generations 7 and 8,’ he writes.”

New Rules For New Technology – We Need ‘Em

April 14, 2014 - 2:16am

“The hybridization of ourselves and our technologies, and the political and economic struggle around this process, threatens to destabilize some qualities of our intimate lives that are also among the core foundations of our civil and moral society: freedom, trust, empathy, forgiveness, forgetting, attention.”

Suddenly, Everyone Loves Really Old Photos – And Here’s Why

April 14, 2014 - 2:13am

“A photograph really is a frozen fragment of time. Not even the fastest, most gifted artists or the most sensually specific novelists have ever captured the kind of incidental realities a photograph dumbly records – the creases in the uniform of the last Napoleonic veteran, his paunch and sidelong glance and white whiskers – or the Brighton Swimming Club in 1863, naked except for their trunks and top hats.”

What Does The Real Philomena Think Of Judi Dench?

April 14, 2014 - 2:10am

“When they suggested Judi Dench, I couldn’t believe it. I nearly fell off my chair. She’s famous all over the world, you know! I was over the moon. A lot of my friends thought I’d gone soft, because they didn’t believe that it was true. I was so glad to be able to say, ‘Actually, look, it is true.’”

Why Irish Novelist Colm Tóibín Doesn’t Want To Be Called A Storyteller

April 14, 2014 - 2:03am

“A particular problem with English people: they seem to think that everyone in Ireland is a writer, and very few of us are writers. And that somehow or other writing comes naturally to us, which it doesn’t. So people love saying to you, “‘h, you Irish—you’re such MAR-velous storytellers, all of you!’”

What Does LBJ Playwright Robert Schenkkan Think About Political Power?

April 14, 2014 - 1:58am

“LBJ was certainly aware of the vagaries of power. He believed that it was important to do everything you could and to use everyone around you in order to further your goals. But at the end of the day there would come a reckoning and power would recede and you would lose your effectiveness. And it didn’t matter how good a politician you were, it was just impossible to control the game all the time”

Costuming James Franco For Broadway

April 14, 2014 - 1:54am

“He’s trying to operate under the radar, so he has to appear like everybody else, like he could fill any post at any time. … There’s nothing remarkable about him.”

The San Diego Opera Just Gave Its Last Performance (We’re Pretty Sure)

April 14, 2014 - 1:51am

“After a three-week battle that convulsed the community here and subjected its once revered opera company to widespread derision and accusations of mismanagement — Ian D. Campbell, its general and artistic director, was nearly booed off the stage when he stepped out to introduce ‘Don Quixote’ this month on opening night — the board of directors on Friday reaffirmed its intention to close down”

This Guy Saved His Local Bookshop, But What’s Next In A World Dominated By Amazon?

April 14, 2014 - 1:49am

“Recent figures showed the number of independent bookshops in the UK has dropped below 1,000 for the first time; the rise of Amazon and e-books, and the decline of many British high streets has pushed the figure down to just 987.”

What Won Big At The Oliviers? Small Theatre, Not The West End

April 14, 2014 - 1:14am

“There is something emancipating about doing a show outside the West End where you don’t think you have to hit the jackpot every time. You’re not panicking about whether you can fill the theatre and there’s not a hysterical pressure there sometimes is when you do a show in the West End and there’s a lot of cash and reputation hanging on it.”

Artists Who Want Corporate Support Without ‘Selling Out’ Now Have A Broker

April 13, 2014 - 2:23pm

“‘Katie’s like a translator,’ said Jasmine Solano, 27, the featured D.J. at the W that Saturday evening. ‘She can translate artist language into corporate planning. That’s not easy to do.’”

The Scholar-Tramp Of Shakespeare, And The Things He Discovered

April 13, 2014 - 1:38pm

“In his log-cabin retreat Halliwell-Phillipps kept, and obsessively curated, his huge collection of ‘Shakespearean rarities’. This consisted of ‘about fifteen hundred separate articles’ – a cornucopia of manuscript papers and parchments, early quarto editions, play-bills, portraits, maps and curios carved from the sacred mulberry tree.”

Why Aren’t Americans Writing About Pakistan, A Pakistani Writer Asks

April 13, 2014 - 1:23pm

Kamila Shamsie: “I am deeply critical of American writers for their total failure to engage with the American empire. It’s a completely shocking failure.”

Wonder Woman Was Supposed To Save The World For Peace. What Happened?

April 13, 2014 - 1:08pm

“The Golden Age of comics was chock-full of angry, violent male superheroes, so Marston created an alternative. He believed that women were superior to men, and that they would soon take over the world and usher in an age of peaceful matriarchy. Wonder Woman was his way to prepare young minds for the idea of a strong, capable woman, so as to better facilitate the coming matriarchy.”

Guess What, Audiences? Those (Non-Equity) Actors Probably Aren’t Paid

April 13, 2014 - 12:56pm

“That hot four-star show? Those incredible performances? Surely, those actors are getting paid, right? Usually not. Or if they are, it is a flat-fee stipend of a couple hundred dollars for the entire run (rates vary among theaters) that might average out to $30 or $40 a week. That’s not including all those weeks of rehearsal, which come with no wages at all.”