Weekly Culture Round Up: Black Cinema, Banned Books, and All the Week's Must Reads


This week has been all about the glory that is Julianne Ross. For those of you who missed out on last week’s introduction, allow me to re-present Julianne, who is our new Deputy Culture Editor Julianne is already contributing in awesome ways to the section, with a fabulous interview with Portugal. The Man that we ran this morning. Our editrix romance is blossoming, and the Culture section will only improve with Julianne on board. If you still haven’t said ‘hey,’ say ‘hey.’

Shout Outs of the Week: 

Also, an enormous hat tip to each and every one of our summer skillsharers who today are wrapping up eight weeks of great writing. A big thank you (and congratulations!) to Ana Defillo, Chelsea Hawkins, Cat Gioino, Stephen Roper, Erin Lowry, and Rachel Redfern.

Also, please spread the good word about PolicyMic to your writer friends! As we continue to grow the section, share our call for new writers!

Culture Section Must-Reads of the Week: 

On the Rodeo Circuit, July is Cowboy Christmas (Abby Sun, @abbypsun) – Professional rodeo cowboys are able to promote a uniquely American Western way of living, but only if they adopt incongruously modern strategies.

5 American Books Banned Around the World (Sarah Swong, @SarahSwong) – Here are five American classics that have been banned abroad for their political implications.

Miranda July Has Managed to Turn Celebrity E-Mails Into Fascinating Art (Kinsey Sullivan, @misskinseylane) – Artist, writer, and filmmaker Miranda July launched an email-based art piece this month. Along with Kirsten Dunst, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Lena Dunham she is testing the limits of voyeurism.

9 Movies That Confirm a Rebirth For Black Cinema (Frank Hagler, @bamatek) – Here are nine movies to prove that the renaissance in black cinema is alive and well.

Face the King is An Indie Band With An Arena Ready Sound (Steven Goldstein, @GoldsteinNU) – An exciting new four-track EP from the Long Island band has its flaws but ultimately shows a whole lot of promise.

‘The To Do List’ Will Change Everything Movies Have Taught You About Women’s Sexuality (Elena Sheppard, @eleshepp) – 'The To Do List' is a film about a high schooler on a sexual quest. For men in film, that plotline is par for the course; but for a female lead the story is shockingly subversive.

Watch What Happens When Genders Are Flipped in the ‘Blurred Lines’ Video (Hannah Loewentheil, @hnrl792) – Many have criticized Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" video for being sexist and even "rapey," but few have taken action. This parody video reverses Thicke's gender roles and  turns talk to action.

The Sad Reason Hollywood Royalty Isn’t Capable Of a Summer 2013 Blockbuster (Nick Recktenwald) – America may be a democracy, but Hollywood has always been a meritocracy.  This summer, one dependable movie star after another has seen his or her movie bomb. Is Hollywood's 1% suffering, too?

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