King Arthur Harry Potter

Harry Potter, the Arthurian Romance

Perhaps the Harry Potter stories are so potent because they rework the iconic hero stories of medieval French Arthurian romances.
Arif Anwar The Storm

The Bright Future of Bangladesh: Researching The Storm

An interview with Arif Anwar, whose debut novel covers sixty years of Bengali history in five love stories.
Little Women movie

My Summer of Watching Little Women

What the author learned from his mother, a feminist academic doing a research project on film adaptations of Little Women.
politics of women reading

When Reading Inspired Women to Change History

The "Friday Night" group was a cohort of prominent nineteenth century Baltimore women who met each week to read, write, and debate social issues.
Michelle Dean

Michelle Dean: A Sharp Look at Criticism by Women

Dean on the obstacles women face in being taken seriously as intellectuals, feminist infighting, and the importance of being an outsider.
Family reading children's book

In Children’s Books, How Much Reality is Too Much?

While children will undoubtedly counter myriad difficulties as they navigate life--and it does them a disservice to pretend otherwise--exposure is a double edged sword.
Sunbonnet Babies

The Merchandising Whiz Behind the Sunbonnet Babies

In the late 1890s, Bertha Corbett set up her own illustration studio in Minneapolis. Her simple drawing of children in sunbonnets became her ticket to success.
Iskander Miscellany

The Ultimate Bespoke Manuscript

In The Miscellany of Iskandar Sultan, sections of text stack on top of one another, interlaced like fretwork. Bursts of flowers and tangles of vines fill the empty spaces.
Norma Jean the Termite Queen

A Forgotten Feminist Novel About the Creative Power of Rage

Remembering history helps us to parse the present, and it follows that women struggling to process these "decades of pent-up anger" can find apt reading material in the feminist fiction of the 1970s.
Old open book

The Great American Game of Picking the Great American Novel

Arguing about the great American novel was perfect fodder for periodicals in the late 1800s, and it is catnip for a listicle-obsessed internet.