Invisible Nursing Woman
Shoshana Rachel (great middle name!) talks about breast-feeding, cleavage and invisible women over at GirlBodyPride.
I Review Tear The Curtain
Earlier this month, I had the chance to interview one of the creators of a supposedly-groundbreaking new Canadian theatre piece. Schedules allowed me to chat with co-creator Kevin Kerr, and this weekend just gone, I was able to see the production in one of its final performances. My review is available through The British Theatre Guide, where I’ve been a contributor since 2003ish.
A Fan Letter To Certain Conservative Politicians
From @scalzi on Twitter. A letter to anti-choice politicians from a satirical rapist. Triggering, yet scathing on the order of Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal. A skilled piece of writing, whether or not you agree with his political views.
I’ve been following the campaigns, and one thing I’ve noticed is that the major candidates have refrained from significant discussion on the topic of climate change. Earlier this year, I did a project called Hot Mess: speculative fiction about climate change and I’d like to take this opportunity to suggest that sometimes, fiction can be an effective way of starting conversations on a grassroots level. Short stories include work by Sare Liz Gordy, RJ Astruc, Miranda Doerfler and Eric Sipple.
Trailer – Celeste Bright
I’ve mentioned a web series project in previous posts, and have to thank @thepowerobject for pointing me to this trailer. Gorgeously shot, the editing and music take you along for the ride – I’m going to pop in the first episode and see what I think of the product. This is part of my research on form and webseries; while I’m still trying to make it through Aidan 5’s full season, learning the language of a quality webseries is coming to the front in my ever-revolving priorities binder.
Ack. I just said binder, didn’t I.
We’re about ten days away from Election Day and voters in key swing states are already heading to the polls. If you spend time on “Twittah“, you already know my views, so I won’t bore you. Politics are, however, relevant, because of my new writing project.
Back in June, I had the idea for a novella that would look at the mechanics of a modern-day election, in scifi-punk terms. Having read a lot of cyberpunk in my teens, and growing out from the ongoing progress of my AI Anthology, Electalytics was meant to give me a chance to express some anxieties about the current election cycle, as well as the framing of political action/content within what I felt (and still feel) to be outdated models – all within a technopunk framework.
Electalytics started off as a challenge – could I write 30K words in a month? By July, I was still shy 2.5K, but I had the solid basis of a piece – and since then, I’ve been editing and refining the story. It’s lost mass and gained focus, and I’m excited to be offering a free look at the first chapter to the first 50 people who sign up on my mailing list. We’re about halfway to our subscription goal, so sign up for the free promo.
Also, come November 6th? Vote.
Posted in Activism & Politics, Lifestyle, Research
Tagged a modest proposal, aboleyn, adorable, aidan 5, babies, binders, binders full of women, bluma appel, body image, body pride, boobies, boobs, breastfeeding, british theatre guide, canada, canadian stages, canadians, celeste bright, climate change, confidence, conservative politicans, conservatives, conversations, electalytics, election 2012, eric sipple, feminism, fiction, girlbodypride, hot mess, human rights, independent election monitors, ireland, jill stein, jonathan swift, Jonathon Young, Kevin Kerr, literature, miranda doerfler, mitt romney, motherhood, mothering, mourdock, novella, nypinta, paul ryan, peter lathan, politicizing, Politics, pride, pro-choice, pro-life, rape, reproductive rights, republicans, rights, rj astruc, road trip, sare liz gordy, scalzi, self-image, shoshuga, Tear the Curtain, the power object, todd aiken, toronto, unfamiliar lives, united nations, vote, voting rights, war on women, women, women's rights
What a fantastic little fable about American politics. In THE BODY POLITIC, writers Richard Abrons and Margarett Perry (the latter of whom also directs this production) have crafted a whip-cracker of a tale about a Republican who falls for a Democrat on the campaign trail. As their relationship – and the campaign – progresses, the young party-liners find themselves negotiating and renegotiating their plans to win the presidency for their candidates.
Abrons and Perry have crafted a world where the superficial trappings of the political machinery are present, creating a backdrop against which the action unfurls, but at the same time they’ve kept the spotlight on the characters in this play – their intrigues and double-crosses, their strategizing and bending of moral certitude – instead of getting bogged down in, you know, actual politics.
At its opening, the six characters of THE BODY POLITIC are waiting for their town cars after a debate. Alternately charming and scathing, the two youngest members of the campaign trade barbs – with young WASP Spencer Davis (Matthew Boston) getting in a few cheeky zings at his democratic counterpart, Trish Rubenstein (Eve Danzeisen). The scenes move quickly – at times the pace of the production feels more filmic than theatrical, with audiences often having only a few pages’ worth of rapid-fire dialogue to establish a setting and connect with the characters’ intentions. It’s a gambit that could make the piece feel choppy, but instead – to an audience member familiar with political drama like THE WEST WING and IN THE LOOP – it’s easy to quickly decide where each scene fits with the one before it. The result is that the pace of the piece is kept moving at a steady clip, and at no point in the production does one feel that horrible sense of time’s immovable plodding. The show might run two hours long (including an intermission), but is tightly constructed and never feels like a drag.
The chemistry between the two protagonists is sometimes lacking, but both Boston and Danzeisen are a pleasure to watch as they’re played off and against one another by their fellow campaigners, and it is the likeability of both these actors that keeps their characters sympathetic despite the tricks they play; we can admire their tenacity and commitment to their own ideals because on sensitive issues, the playwrights have found ways to legitimately express the frustrations, hopes, fears and motivations of both the religious right and the radical lefties – while at the same time reminding us that actually, both Democrats and (to a lesser degree now that the Tea Party has arrived) Republicans benefit from a polarized system.
The rest of the cast is entertaining and enjoyable – particularly Leslie Hendrix, whose turn as Political Warrior Goddess Brunhilda Logan transports this play into high satire; her blunt, direct and mannish delivery is an absolute delight. From brutal profanities to a direct delivery of threatened emasculation, Brunhilda is a fizzing, spitting Fury – and Hendrix is utterly delightful in the role.
If you’re looking for affordable (for NYC) theater at a terrific venue (59E59 is a personal favorite of mine), then you can’t go wrong with THE BODY POLITIC.
Posted in Activism & Politics, Lifestyle, Theatre Reviews
Tagged 59E59, Activism & Politics, atheism, brunhilda logan, criticism, democrats, eve danzeisen, leslie hendrix, margarett perry, matthew boston, new plays, new writing, New York Theater, nyc, nyc theater, Opinion, political campaign, political theater, Politics, positive review, primary colors, religion, religion in politics, republicans, review, richard abrons, romantic comedy, spencer davis, the body politic, theater, theater review, theater reviews, theatre, trish rubenstein, two-party system