Since They Cancelled This Year’s Bad Sex In Fiction Award, Here’s Some Brand New Bad Sex In Fiction

“The judges offered the justification that ‘the public had been subjected to too many bad things this year to justify exposing it to bad sex as well,’ but come on — the bad things we’ve weathered in 2020 are exactly the reason we need to laugh and cringe at [execrable sex writing]. … The Literary Review judges admonished writers not to take the cancellation as ‘a license to write bad sex’ — but they abandoned us in our time of need so we don’t have to listen to them.” – Electric Literature

Why Just ‘Adding Context’ To Controversial Monuments May Not Change Minds

In two words, confirmation bias. If the text about slavery added to a statue of a Confederate general at a battleground or to the displays at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello conflict with visitors’ pre-existing beliefs, those people will dismiss the new information as irrelevant (if they even notice that it’s there). This is particularly true at historical monuments because, research has shown, most people who visit them don’t go there to learn. – Smithsonian Magazine

In Canada, A True Brouhaha About Yet Another Well-Funded Artist’s Claim Of Indigenous Identity

Michelle Latimer is the co-creator and director of Canada’s Trickster, a TV series that has won acclaim as an adaptation of an Indigenous writer’s trilogy. But Latimer’s claimed identity has come into serious question. She said she had “prematurely claimed a link without first doing the proper research to back up her belief.” – CBC

It Took A Netflix Movie To Shed Light On Playwright August Wilson’s Vision

Well, not in the theatre world, obviously – but in the wider world, Netflix carries some pretty solid cultural cachet. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is the first of Wilson’s plays to be adapted for the streaming behemoth. Its director says Wilson’s play is all too relevant in 2020. “It would be lovely one day if it was a lovely piece of nostalgia about the difficult complicated racial equation of 1927. But that’s not going to happen for a while.” – NPR

Pop Culture Absolutely Failed Us In 2020

Perhaps it’s too overwhelming to contemplate on any pop level, but also, the lack of a sufficient representation of our time is weird. “Months into this altered reality, pop culture has remained stunted, vaguely gesturing at our shared reality without having contributions of substance. There have been surprisingly few works in music, TV, or films that help us process what we are going through. This is not for lack of content.” – BuzzFeed

The Head Of Americans For The Arts Steps Aside After Many, Many Workplace Complaints

The powerful arts advocacy nonprofit had many successes – but workplace culture wasn’t one of them. “The move comes after a growing chorus of criticism, from current and former AFTA employees and advisory council members, who said that the organization was failing its mission with respect to diversity, equity and inclusion. There were also complaints of sexual harassment, and of a management culture that was built on intimidation instead of transparency.” – The New York Times

Yes, It Absolutely Is A Big Deal To Have Queer Christmas Movies

Why would anyone want to join that schlocky tradition? Well, ask screenwriter Michael Varrati. “‘Movie Christmas is a lot different than real Christmas,’ Varrati said. ‘Not everybody has a great relationship with their family or has pristine memories of yesteryear.’ In holiday movies, he added, queer people ‘get to live in the Christmas they always wanted or didn’t get to have.'” – The New York Times

Is Making Movies Worth It Right Now?

That’s really what Tom Cruise’s rant was about, and it’s also about the concentration of power during the pandemic, while studios are paying millions to try to keep their productions afloat: “In the short term, this means more projects in the pipeline to keep Tinseltown busy. In the long term, though, the shift only widens Hollywood’s power imbalance, creating an industry dependent on the wealthiest studios and celebrities.” – The Atlantic