CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 13, 2014 |
With a strong push from MTV, spoken-word poetry went mainstream in the mid-1990s, and Maggie Estep was its leading lady. Dressed in black, often backed by a rock band, Estep was a sassy, slightly twisted New Yorker who wrote and performed humorous, biting pieces that merged poetry with stand-up comedy. A regular at Manhattan's Nuyorican Poets Café, the center of the poetry slam movement, she was a crowd favorite for pieces with titles like "Hey Baby" and "The Stupid Jerk I'm Obsessed With.
February 12, 2014 |
The merits of the nine nominees for the Academy Award for best picture are being debated by cineastes around the world. But as a college professor, this year's Oscar nominees also reaffirm the growing importance of the movies in the classroom and how film can inspire young people to greater academic inquiry. Although most of my students have never heard of the 1970s Abscam scandal, many have seen "American Hustle. " The horrors of American slavery are brought back on screen, in "12 Years a Slave," for a generation of white undergraduates who see nothing extraordinary about having African Americans as roommates, teammates or teachers.
February 6, 2014 |
Sometimes political careers are born of chance. John Nicolay and John Hay were two young men working in Springfield, Ill., when they became involved with the political life of Abraham Lincoln before his 1860 U.S. presidential campaign. Tireless and smart, the friends, still in their 20s, proved themselves indispensable to Lincoln, who brought them along with him to the White House as his personal secretaries - in effect, the president's gatekeepers. In his new book, "Lincoln's Boys: John Hay, John Nicolay, and the War for Lincoln's Image," author Joshua Zeitz skillfully recounts what were heady days for Nicolay and Hay, even as they were tragic days for the nation.
January 31, 2014 |
At 24, professional snowboarder Elena Hight is already a two-time Olympian and in training for the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Raised near the mountains in California, she began hitting the slopes as a child and competed in her first Olympics at age 16. Hight, now a full-time boarder, is also passionate about surfing and cooking. Here, she discusses how she stays in shape mentally and physically. How did you learn to snowboard and develop it as a passion? I was born in Hawaii, and my family relocated to the mountains in Lake Tahoe when I was 6 years old. My dad was a surfer his whole life, and the first thing he did when we relocated was teach my whole family to snowboard, and I just took to the sport real quickly, and it took off from there.
January 13, 2014 |
SYCAMORE RANCH, Israel - On a day marked by military protocol, somber ceremony and informal reflection, former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was remembered Monday as a "practical and pragmatic man," a "bulldozer" who helped shape his nation even as he earned a reputation for ruthlessness from its enemies. Sharon, who died Saturday at 85 after years in a stroke-induced coma, was hailed by world leaders in a public memorial service in Jerusalem before taking a last journey to his family's ranch in southern Israel, where he was laid to rest beside his second wife in a burial that combined military pomp with traditional Jewish ritual.
January 11, 2014 |
The World Cup kicks off in Brazil in five months. And with the group-play pairings already set, the U.S. knows who it will play, where it will play and when it will play. Still to be determined, however, is who will be in uniform when all that happens, which leaves Coach Juergen Klinsmann and his staff with several difficult decisions to make between now and early June, when the team leaves for Sao Paulo. But with just one FIFA match day on the international calendar this spring, those decisions will necessarily be influenced by what the players did last year, what they do with their club teams this year and what many of them do during the national team's winter camp, which began last week.