Category Archives: LARB Channels

LARB Channels larb blog past california

Futures Past

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Today’s post was originally published on LARB Channel Boom, which describes it as “exploring California landscapes with the San Francisco Estuary Institute.” By Erin Beller, Ruth Askevold, and Robin Grossinger Heading home from a successful duck hunting trip near the Sacramento River one rainy winter evening around 1850, William Wright got hopelessly lost in a muddy […]


LARB Channels larb blog mulholland drive

Grief, Investigation, and Mulholland Dr.

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Today’s post was originally published on LARB Channel Avidly. By Lisa Beskin A month or so after my mother’s death in 2001, I found myself in an awkward situation involving David Lynch’s Mulholland Dr. I had just seen it in the theater, loved it, and desperately wanted to talk about it with a certain friend. But I hadn’t yet […]


LARB Channels larb blog muir

John Muir, A Century On

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Today’s post is from LARB Channel Boom. Photo: Tree in Field, 2006, from A New Pastoral: Views of the San Joaquin Valley. Photograph by Barron Bixler. By Glen M. MacDonald John Muir, the grand old man of the Sierra Nevada, died 100 years ago in a Los Angeles hospital bed with only an unfinished book manuscript […]


LARB Channels larb blog learning to read at 17

Learning to Read at Seventeen

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Today’s post was originally published earlier this week by LARB Channel Avidly. By James McWilliams The psychoanalyst Adam Phillips once observed that people don’t strive to be what they already are. It’s an elegantly obvious point, but it’s also terrifying in its implications. After all, for the “aspiring self,” the ambition to be something else—someone else—reveals […]

LARB Channels larb blog wu-wei

The Paradox of Wu-Wei

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Today’s post was originally published by LARB Channel Marginalia.  By Andrew B. Irvine Almost all the arts of life are enhanced when performed with unselfconscious spontaneity — think shooting hoops, playing a complicated musical passage, dining with friends. The moment we try not to try is often the moment performance collapses in a counterproductive muddle. This “paradox of wu-wei,” […]


LARB Channels Ice Bucket Challenge

On the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and Ferguson

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Today’s post was originally published last week by LARB Channel Avidly.  By M.J. Dinius Last night on Facebook, my friend explicitly linked the two stories dominating my social media feed: The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and the events in Ferguson, Missouri.  My friend asked,  “How many buckets of ice would I have to pour over my […]


LARB Channels larb blog invisible bridge

California and The Invisible Bridge

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Today’s post, a review of Rick Perlstein’s The Invisible Bridge, was originally published by LARB Channel Boom. By Thad Kousser When the immigrant refugees were first transported, in huddled mass after huddled mass, into federal facilities spread across the country, local reactions were visceral and virulent. Residents signed petitions to let them know they weren’t welcome, talk […]


LARB Channels larb blog hoffman

Where I’m Calling From: Philip Seymour Hoffman, 1967-2014

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Today on the blog we revisit a piece from LARB Channel Avidly on the passing of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, in light of his latest and last starring movie role in A Most Wanted Man. By Philip Maciak Philip Seymour Hoffman was great on the telephone. If you start to think about it, it’s going to be hard […]


LARB Channels larb blog ernest and celestine

Bastille Day in Beverly Hills: The Revolution, Televised

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Photo: Ernest and Celestine, New Video Group, 2014 Today’s post was originally published by LARB Channel Marginalia.  By Ted Scheinman We were both light in the head from a five-mile hike that had verged on a vision quest — too many miles with too little water under a cloudless sky at Calabasas Peak. It therefore took me […]


LARB Channels larb blog boom and bust

Boom and Bust and What Comes Next

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Photo: Howard Street and First Street by Leo vanMunching. Today’s post was originally published on LARB Channel Boom, and is available on their site or from their Summer 2014 issue.  “Boom and bust is our lot and we must follow the ancient advice. . .that Joseph gave to the Pharaoh: Put away your surplus during the years […]