Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Singing to John Brown … President Matt Damon? … Perry’s perks … Life fades in scorched Texas … History of women’s protests.

Most of these great items come from my Twitter feed or Facebook news feed. Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook for more fascinating videos, articles, essays and criticism. Read past recommendations from this series here.

1. As Texas Dries Out, Life Falters and Fades
By Richard Parker | The New York Times | Aug. 13
“Up in Austin, Gov. Rick Perry is moving toward a run for the presidency. But he has had precious little to say about the drought that is devastating his state. He did organize a prayer for rain back in April. Looking at that blazing hot, clear blue sky up there, it seems heaven isn’t listening.”

2. Flannery O’Connor reads ‘A Good Man is Hard to Find’
Manasto Jones | May 18, 2009
“This is a recording from 1959 of Flannery O’Connor … Vanderbilt University.”

3. Perry offers perks to donors who raise generous funds
The Fix :: The Washington Post | Aug. 13
“According to a strategy document obtained by The Washington Post’s Karen Tumulty, there are four levels in the Perry donor universe.”

4. A Brief History of Women’s Protests
By Megan Gibson | Time | Aug. 12
“Timing is everything, especially when it comes to a rally.”

5. A first look at the National September 11 Memorial
By Blair Kamin | Cityscapes :: The Chicago Tribune | Aug. 14
“A tough work of abstract minimalism, softened by waterfalls and oak trees, seeks to meld remembrance and regeneration”

6. Oldest survivor of Bataan Death March dies at 105
By Jim Suhr | Associated Press | Aug. 15
“‘Doc’ Brown was nearly 40 in 1942 when he endured the Bataan Death March, a harrowing 65-mile trek in which 78,000 prisoners of war were forced to walk from Bataan province near Manila to a Japanese POW camp. As many as 11,000 died along the way. ”

7. Matt Damon for president? In US politics, they have seen crazier scripts
By Paul Harris | The Guardian | Aug. 14
“The line between Hollywood fame and political power is often blurred, so suggestions that the liberal actor might run can’t be dismissed”

8. Why they sang about John Brown
By R. Blakeslee Gilpin | The Boston Globe | Aug. 14
“How a violent revolutionary inspired the Union’s great marching song – right here in Boston”

9. Rereading: Love on the Dole by Walter Greenwood
By John Harris | The Guardian | Aug. 7, 2010
“An evocative portrayal of life in depression-era Britain, Love on the Dole sold thousands when it was first published in the 1930s. John Harris visits the Salford streets where it was set and finds some grim resonances”

10. Mixed race marriage victory in US
Witness :: BBC News | June 9
“In 1958, a mixed-race couple were banished from the US state of Virginia for breaking its laws against inter-racial marriage.”

Author: Fernando Ortiz Jr.

Handsome gentleman scholar, Civil War historian, unpretentious intellectual, world traveler, successful writer.

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