Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: Martian probe’s video / Dogs in the White House / Joan Didion on writing / Pop music and segregation / Revolutions of 1848

This week: Martian probe’s video / Dogs in the White House / Joan Didion on writing / Pop music and segregation / Revolutions of 1848

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism. Learn more about my academic background here.

1. Mars Video Reveals Perseverance Rover’s Daring Touchdown
By Alexandra Witze | Scientific American | February 2021
“The NASA spacecraft has also snapped more shots of its surroundings and listened to a Martian wind gust”

2. The Wonder of It All
By Jon Kirby | Oxford American | November 2019
“In Ron McNair’s Orbit”

3. ‘Who pours the kibble?’ And other answers about daily life for dogs in the White House
By Bonnie Berkowitz | The Washington Post | January 2021
“When the two German shepherds entered the White House, they brought a great opportunity to dig into the day-to-day doggie logistics in one of the busiest and most powerful households in the world.”

4. Joan Didion: Why I Write
By Joan Didion | LitHub | January 2021
“All I knew then was what I wasn’t, and it took me some years to discover what I was.”
Also see, from The New Yorker: What We Get Wrong About Joan Didion

5. Fran Lebowitz on Not Sleeping, Not Writing, and Not Naming Names
By Brian Alessandro | Interview | January 2021
“Lebowitz and I discussed her relationship with Warhol … her disdain for bad art, taxing the tasteless, and trigger warnings, among other topics. No matter what she’s saying, it’s always imbued with her trademark wit and bold judgments.”

6. Biden administration could have record number of Indian Americans — more than half women
By Alexa Mikhail | The 19th | January 2021
“The Biden-Harris administration has named or nominated the most Indian Americans for positions in the administration in American history.”

7. Trump’s useful thugs: how the Republican party offered a home to the Proud Boys
By Brendan O’Connor | The Guardian | January 2021
“Early in Trump’s presidency, emboldened neo-Nazi and fascist groups came out into the open but were met with widespread revulsion. So the tactics of the far right changed, becoming more insidious — and much more successful”

8. Developing the Amazon
By Christopher Rose, Joan Neuberger and Henry Wiencek | 15 Minute History :: UT Department of History | 2014-2020
Also see: Climate Change and World History | Segregating Pop Music | The Senses of Slavery | The Myth of Race in America

9. Have You Ever Experienced ‘Impostor Syndrome’?
By Nicole Daniels | The New York Times | January 2021
“Do you ever have feelings of self-doubt, that you’re not good enough or that you don’t belong?”

10. Pericles
By Melvyn Bragg | In Our Time :: BBC 4 | 2012-2020
Also see: Erasmus | The Kama Sutra | 1848: Year of Revolution | The Safavid Dynasty

Author: Fernando Ortiz Jr.

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

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