Arts

The Arts

Ruby and Sapphire get married on Steven Universe. Cartoon Network

After Decades In The Background, Queer Characters Step To The Front In Kids’ Media

The Peabody award-winning series Steven Universe, which broke barriers in queer representation by airing the first LBGTQ wedding in a kid’s series when Ruby and Sapphire (who are actually living rocks, yes, but feminine-coded rocks who use she/her pronouns and present as female) got married. Continue Reading After Decades In The Background, Queer Characters Step To The Front In Kids’ Media

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Singer and actor Leslie Grace stars as Nina Rosario (center), the beloved and brilliant neighborhood sweetheart in the film adaptation of the musical In the Heights. Macall Polay/Warner Brothers

The Limitations Of ‘Latinidad’: How Colorism Haunts ‘In The Heights’

On the Monday after the release of In the Heights, its creator, Lin-Manuel Miranda posted not a congratulatory note but an apology. Over the weekend, the conversation around colorism and In the Heights reached a fever pitch as more viewers began to wonder why there weren’t any dark-skinned Afro-Latinos in any of the leading roles to represent a place as diverse as Washington Heights. Continue Reading The Limitations Of ‘Latinidad’: How Colorism Haunts ‘In The Heights’

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Two sea creatures go undercover as boys in a small Italian Riviera town in the charming Pixar film Luca. CREDIT: Pixar

FILM REVIEW: Dive Into ‘Luca’ And ‘Undine,’ 2 Under-The-Sea Films To Treasure

By curious coincidence, two of the lovelier movies I’ve seen so far this summer — the family-friendly animated fable Luca and the German art-house fairy tale Undine — tell stories about mythic sea creatures making contact with the human world. That’s hardly a new concept, as we’ve seen in films as different as The Shape of Water, Aquaman and countless versions of The Little Mermaid. But as Luca and Undine demonstrate, there are still fresh stories to be dredged up from these watery depths. Continue Reading FILM REVIEW: Dive Into ‘Luca’ And ‘Undine,’ 2 Under-The-Sea Films To Treasure

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Nigerian author Chigozie Obioma

‘Traverse Talks’ Episode 14: Chigozie Obioma On Finding Differences And Similarities Between Cultures

In this episode of Traverse Talks with Sueann Ramella, author Chigozie Obioma talks about how his time in Cyprus for school and growing up in Nigeria shaped his work, the types of racism he has experienced in his travels and the meaning behind his name. Continue Reading ‘Traverse Talks’ Episode 14: Chigozie Obioma On Finding Differences And Similarities Between Cultures

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BOOK REVIEW: This Family Saga Finds Grace And Beauty In Ordinary Lives, Fully Lived

Read at night, at the end of a too-long day, and characters will enter and exit the rooms of memory, trailing the scent of cigarette smoke and faded perfume. With Simon Van Booy’s new novel, Night Came With Many Stars, open in front of me, I know the smell of summer afternoons and the pattern of paint spattered on a workingman’s boots. I can hear the bugs in the dark and feel the spill of light from a house at the end of a long, dirt drive. Find a book that speaks a language you know and you can drown in it without even realizing. Continue Reading BOOK REVIEW: This Family Saga Finds Grace And Beauty In Ordinary Lives, Fully Lived

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Author Becky Albertalli with her book collection.

‘Traverse Talks’ Episode 12: Becky Albertalli & Scott Leadingham On Literature Helping Form Identity

In this unique episode of “Traverse Talks with Sueann Ramella,” NWPB’s Scott Leadingham interviews author Becky Albertalli. The two talk about identity, representation of LGBTQIA+ books in school libraries, and how people come out and present themselves to the world. Continue Reading ‘Traverse Talks’ Episode 12: Becky Albertalli & Scott Leadingham On Literature Helping Form Identity

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book cover - House of Sticks - by Ly Tran

BOOK REVIEW: ‘House Of Sticks’ Is An Immigrant Success Story With Filial Bonds At The Core

Ly Tran’s memoir House of Sticks brings to mind both the story of The Three Little Pigs and the myth of the unassimilated other in Francois Truffaut’s The Wild Child (L’Enfant Sauvage), in its unsentimental yet deeply moving examination of filial bond, displacement, war trauma, and poverty. Continue Reading BOOK REVIEW: ‘House Of Sticks’ Is An Immigrant Success Story With Filial Bonds At The Core

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Image of Will O'Neal and Renee Love from Backyard Harvest.

‘Traverse Talks’ Episode 11: Backyard Harvest On The Importance Of Food And Community

In this episode of “Traverse Talks with Sueann Ramella,” Will O’Neal and Renee Love, leaders within the organization Backyard Harvest, share how the group serves its community and how both they and many of their volunteers got a close-up view of food insecurity within local households. Continue Reading ‘Traverse Talks’ Episode 11: Backyard Harvest On The Importance Of Food And Community

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