NPR : News

Filed Under:

Book News: American Library Association, Barnes & Noble Called 'Facilitators Of Porn'

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

  • The American Library Association and Barnes & Noble were among the groups named by conservative group Morality in Media in its "Dirty Dozen List" of "the top 12 facilitators of porn." The list states that the ALA encourages libraries to have unfiltered computers, and that the bookstore chain "is a major supplier of adult pornography and child erotica." The top spot, however, went to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder for "refus[ing] to enforce existing federal obscenity laws."
  • Squirreled away in a recent Wall Street Journal article about a concert DVD by singer Alanis Morissette was this revelation: "She's focused at the moment on writing a book, which she calls 'transpersonal psychology meets autobiography, with a little humor thrown in, I hope.' "
  • The latest "Mysteries of the Vernacular" installment — charming video etymologies of English words — locates the word "clue" in the Minotaur's maze and Chaucer's England.
  • A new book by comedian Cleo Rocos, The Power of Positive Drinking, which comes out in May, claims that she and Queen singer Freddie Mercury sneaked Princess Diana into a gay bar in the 1980s by disguising her as a male model.
  • In The Guardian, John Dugdale takes apart "campus fiction," and, in particular, Joyce Carol Oates' The Accursed: "Oates's bizarre, sprawling novel, in which the devil comes to Princeton in 1905, is especially saturated with other books, ranging from vampire and Stephen King shockers to the prototypical tale of a don driven mad, Goethe's Faust. Like other recent campus concoctions, it suggests a moratorium has long been overdue."
  • Jacob Harris, senior software architect at The New York Times, has developed an algorithm to find accidental haikus in the paper, from the mundane: "The one thing to be / careful about / is trimming the broccoli rabe," to the poetic: "The buzzing of a / thousand bees in the tiny / curled pearl of an ear."
Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Not My Job: Sharon Jones Gets Quizzed On Handshakes

We've invited the lead singer of Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings to play a game called "Let's shake on it."
NPR

Salvage Supperclub: A High-End Dinner In A Dumpster To Fight Food Waste

The ingredients — think wilted basil, bruised plums, garbanzo bean water — sound less than appetizing. Whipped together, they're a tasty meal that show how home cooks can use often-tossed foods.
NPR

Barbershop: Speechwriters Speak On The RNC And DNC

Republican speechwriter Mary Kate Cary, Democratic speechwriter Jeff Nussbaum and historian from the University of Virginia Barbara Perry dissect the last two weeks of speeches at the RNC and DNC.
NPR

From 'The Water's Edge To The Cutting Edge': Fish Skeletons, CT Scans And Engineering

Professor Adam Summers is a "fish guy." He uses fish to get engineering ideas. His latest project is to CT scan every type of fish — all 33,000 of them.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.