Monthly Archive:: January 2011

Sh*t My Mom Says: Women, Men, and Humor

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Ellen, Rosanne, Whoopi, Tina.  They’re women, they tell jokes, and we’re on a first-name basis.  These comedians have imposing brains but often focus on their thighs: they write frequently about their relationship with food, this being one theme that connects them.  On the popular NBC sitcom 30 Rock, Tina

Third Spacing-It in Poetry

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Thanks to a suggestion from a friend, I’ve been reading a lot of Homi K. Bhabha’s work on Postcolonialism and communicative politics. I’m not really built for critical theory, so I started with Bhabha’s best-known text, The Location of Culture. The fundamental tenet of the book (and this is

Interview with Joel Brouwer

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Like anyone, I have to contend with my own stupidity all the time—forgetting things, ignoring essentials, not listening—but one of my latest and most grossly idiotic moves was waiting until 2010 to read Joel Brouwer. That’s too kind, actually: I didn’t wait, it wasn’t like I’d seen his stuff

Red Pens and Other Ego-Paring Tools

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In “Dr. Deneau’s Punishment,” one of eleven excellent short stories in Lori Ostlund’s Flannery O’Connor award-winning collection The Bigness of the World, the title character despairs over the current trend in American schools to reward students for their mediocrity.  Under the new regime of the militantly optimistic, the red

Patterns and Need

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Our third guest blogger, Adrian Matejka, is a poet whose poem “Eighty-Eight Days in My Veins” appears in our Winter 2010-11 issue edited by Terrance Hayes.  Adrian will post on Fridays through April. Paul Hegarty said, “Noise is a system of judgments.” He was talking about the qualitative distinctions

Interview with Ed Skoog

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Weston Cutter, our second guest blogger, will post on Wednesdays through April.  Weston is a poet whose poem “The Invention of Color vs. The Song of EA” appears in our Winter 2010-11 issue edited by Terrance Hayes. Ed Skoog’s freakishly excellent debut Mister Skylight was one of 2009’s books

Dead Stories: When to Say When

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This week we welcome three new Get Behind the Plough bloggers to Ploughshares. The first is fiction writer Christine Sneed, whose story “The Prettiest Girls” appears in our Winter 2010-11 issue edited by Terrance Hayes. Christine will post on Mondays through April. Guest post by Christine Sneed The harsh

An Editing Strategy in Winter

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The best way to write is hoeing corn or chopping wood or milking cows or walking the roads. The boots I’ve worn out writing books! – Elliott Merrick Guest post by Megan Mayhew Bergman The last light falls across my backyard. The ground is covered in a foot and