Browsing: Americana

May – June, 2012

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Reviews of Beatitude by Larry Closs, History of a Pleasure Seeker by Richard Mason, and In the Company of Strangers: Family and Narrative in Dickens, Conan Doyle, Joyce, and Proust by Barry McCrea.

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IF PIERRE S. DU PONT II (1870-1954) loved anyone in his long life, it was Lewes Andrew Mason, the young man who worked at Longwood Gardens as his driver and handyman. Doubtless Pierre felt affection for his wife, Alice Belin du Pont (1872-1944), but a working man from Delaware won his heart. …

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BORN IN AN ERA when lesbianism was considered deviant and unmentionable, Jane Rule grew up to write books in which same-sex love was portrayed as sane, nurturing, and entirely normal.

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IF YOU’RE READING this magazine, then you’ve probably danced to the music of Nile Rodgers at some point in your life, and probably more than once. A pioneer of the disco era and co-founder of the powerhouse R&B/dance group Chic, Rodgers created some of the most memorable club hits of the late 1970’s …

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AIDS Memorial (Crown Hill, IN, 2000)
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THE THIRTIETH ANNIVERSARY of the AIDS epidemic was commemorated last year in two issues of this magazine, which covered the crisis from a range of perspectives-political activism, cultural expressions, scientific developments-but there was no mention of the various AIDS memorials that have emerged and evolved over the years. In fact, there are quite a few such memorials throughout the United States. …

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AUTHOR JOY LADIN “never much wanted to live.” Born into relative privilege, Ladin had a good childhood, but death always “seemed close.” Ladin remembers thinking that the idea of dying was exciting, while life was not, because he was forced to live in the wrong body, having been born as a boy.

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STROLLING AT NIGHT along Berlin’s famous promenade, Unter den Linden, in the fall of 1921, the American expatriate writer Robert McAlmon couldn’t be certain that the passers-by dressed as women were really women. …

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THIS INVENTIVE NOVEL tells two interrelated stories. In the main one, an author named Ben Markovits is traveling around the U.S. and England in pursuit of information about his recently deceased former colleague, Peter Sullivan, whose writings form the secondary narrative. …

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SCOTTY BOWERS’ love affair with movie stars began when he was still a boy whose divorced mother had moved from a failed farm in the Depression Midwest to the city of Chicago, where Bowers not only learned to sneak into movies but earned money for his family the way any hero in a Horatio Alger novel might start out: delivering newspapers, shining shoes, and letting local priests have sex with him. But …

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