Ilaf

Media chains POC artists to cultural narratives

Cutting Room Floor

Spotting the few POC artists in the relatively homogenous pool of American media may be the easiest “Where’s Waldo?” yet. We tokenize them, celebrating their successes as if they singlehandedly solve the lack of diversity plaguing the entertainment industry. We force their cultural narratives upon them, demanding their roots to
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Remembering Tilikum: the public impact of documentary ‘Blackfish’

Cutting Room Floor

About a week ago, in the early hours of Jan. 6, Tilikum — Seaworld’s best-known orca and the star of Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s 2013 documentary “Blackfish” — died at age 36. Captured wild in Icelandic waters, Tilikum was long known as the notorious perpetrator of three homicides over a period of
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danielle-gutierrez_online2

The divine comedy

Ladies and gentlemen, I’m an atheist. I’m a total cliché of what the media makes the typical (moderately) liberal youngster out to be. My Sunday rituals consist of watching new episodes of “The Simpsons” and catching up on the previous week’s “Conan.” No church or bedtime prayers for me. I’ve
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harrison_tunggal_online

Rogue Mold: (Sort of) a Star Wars Story

Last year on the Sunday night before Dead Week, I walked into my residence hall and something felt wrong. No, something smelt wrong. It was like the soggy fur of a tauntaun that had just sprinted through 10,000 parsecs of bantha fodder, only to take an unjustifiably long dip in
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Eleventh Twelfth

Cutting Room Floor

I can’t explain why November is my favorite month. When anyone asks, I say that it’s because my ascendant sign is Scorpio and hope that they buy it and that they won’t try to debate me on whether or not astrology is real in the first place. Ten novembers ago
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Justin Knight_Online

A liar, a scammer

Fake Out

“What is your column about, exactly?” I was quite literally asked this question on a date last week. He, like an assortment of other people in my life this semester, was mildly curious about my column’s intentions. People seemed to like my work, but clearly the larger whole of my
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Justin Knight_Online

A real boy

Fake Out

Thanksgiving isn’t the only holiday we’ll be celebrating this Thursday. Nov. 24 of this year, which coincidentally falls on Thanksgiving, will mark the eighth anniversary of one of the most important pop albums of this century: Kanye West’s 808s and Heartbreak. In light of Kanye’s recent statements at his shows
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Justin Knight_Online

Both sides now

Fake Out

The first concert I ever went to was Joni Mitchell’s. I still hadn’t been born yet. Mom wanted to go see her that much, so she sweated out a humid Louisiana April afternoon, still pregnant with me in 1995, just to see Joni Mitchell perform. That was my last chance
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olivia_jerramonline

Late blooming

My younger brother was the first person to show me “What Makes You Beautiful,” released in 2011. We probably played that song 30 times that afternoon and danced nonstop around the living room the whole time. We watched the music video and critiqued the attractiveness of all the lead singers
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Justin Knight_Online

Queer bait

Fake Out

Growing up, I collected queer-feeling art like trading cards. Musicians like Arca, Lou Reed and Sleater-Kinney are coded as distinctly queer performers. I’ve taken their work in deep, ingesting their explicit, vocal queerness with relish. They performed their queerness as icons and as artists in bold, daring and highly visible
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