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Showing posts from April, 2016

What Belongs to You - Garth Greenwell

Over the course of that wonderful time in year when one season transitions into the next, I picked up John Williams' 'Stoner', a rediscovered masterpiece exploring the life and sadness of the central character across a mundanely painted image of Midwestern America. I longed for Stoner to reach some form of formidable happiness and found myself fully invested in the tale Williams wove. Fast forward two months and I find myself revisiting the same feelings in Garth Greenwell's truly astonishing debut, 'What Belongs to You'. 

Set in central Bulgaria, the novel opens, rather abruptly, with the narrator (of which his name is never revealed) visiting a bathroom stall and paying for a "transaction" with Mitko, a young high-spirited rent boy, and then begins a dangerous game of the unnamed narrator chasing his explicit desires repeatedly through more encounters with Mitko while struggling with a silent shame that is deep-rooted from his past. Interestingly, Mi…

The People vs OJ Simpson | A Cultural Significance

Last night concluded what was, arguably, the finest drama series to hit television screens in a long time. American Crime Story: The People vs OJ Simpson has span over ten, excruciatingly tense weeks telling the story of how celebrity footballer OJ Simpson was famously acquitted with the murders of Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman. Given that the trial took place when I was less than a year old, I can only commend the writers, actors and everyone involved at FX for bringing this story into the twenty first century and to ground the cultural repercussions of the trial that are still strikingly relevant today.

      Issues of intense media scrutiny, racism, driving sexism toward women and the pressure of fame are just a handful of topics handled in the series, but what makes it more illuminating if a tad concerning, is how most of these issues are still present today. Riots in the street after the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner at the hands of the police can be contextualised furt…