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Kate Tuttle

Writer & Critic

Kate Tuttle

Writing on books and authors, race and politics, family and childhood.

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Why a certain slur hasn’t gone away

The journalist Allison Yarrow remembers seeing an online quiz that surprised her. It invited users to learn “Which ’90s Bitch Are You?”. At the time, she was surprised — “I hadn’t really thought of the ’90s as returning for reassessment or nostalgic treatment” — but it sparked the idea for her new book.
The Boston Globe Link to Story
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Nancy Balbirer Finds Wisdom in Having a “Terrible Time”

In her first memoir,Take Your Shirt Off and Cry: A Memoir of Near-Fame Experiences, Nancy Balbirer shared some of the more extraordinary tales of her life as an actor, writer, and downtown New York fixture. Just a year after the book was published in 2009, Balbirer began a year of worry, change, and wrenching pain as she was losing her marriage and her beloved beagle, Ira, who was dying.
DAME Magazine Link to Story
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Talking with Morgan Jerkins

Morgan Jerkins’s first book, “This Will Be My Undoing,” is an essay collection that ranges from intimate stories about childhood, religion, and sexuality to broader cultural criticism on topics of race, gender, politics, and power. When asked whether she always knew the book would be so energetic and ambitious, the 25-year-old author said, “Yes!
The Boston Globe Link to Story
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Is the Solidarity of Sisterhood a Myth?

Today’s cultural conversation around gender and power, turbocharged ever since allegations of sexual assault and harassment took down Harvey Weinstein, has been a long time coming. The #MeToo movement, pioneered by Tarana Burke, grew into a juggernaut on social media, a communal reckoning that both demanded men be held accountable for their actions, and invited women to share their stories of being sexually harassed and assaulted.
DAME Magazine Link to Story
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Tracing the roots of misogyny to ancient Greece and Rome with Mary Beard

The classicist Mary Beard opens her book “Women & Power” with a scene out of the Odyssey. Penelope leaves her room to approach the assorted suitors who more or less occupy her mansion, waiting for her to give up on long-lost Odysseus and marry one of them. When she requests they stop singing such songs, she is met with resistance from the youngest male there: Her adolescent son, Telemachus, chastises her. Return to your room, he tells her; public speaking is for men.
Los Angeles Times Link to Story
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Jaclyn Friedman Wants to 'Unscrew' Systemic Sexism

She’s spoken on college campuses, television and radio shows, and her own podcast, Unscrewed, about issues of sexual liberation. In her new book Unscrewed: Women, Sex, Power, and How to Stop Letting the System Screw Us All, Friedman tackles all of it—the whole tangled web of entrenched, systemic sexism and all its modern iterations.
DAME Magazine Link to Story
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Tom Perrotta on Sex, the Suburbs, and his new MILF

When Tom Perrotta and his wife, Mary Granfield, sent their second child off to college two years ago, they found themselves navigating a brand new life stage. “Parenting becomes this career,” he says. “You’re in the thick of it, and then suddenly it’s – not quite over, but it doesn’t take up a huge amount of space anymore, and there’s a sense of reassessment of one’s adult life.”.
Los Angeles Times Link to Story
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VP Pence's No-Lady-Company Policy Is Not About Respecting His Wife

I lost my good friend, Denis, two weeks ago. He and I are both straight, and never became romantically involved. I am married, and during our friendship, he got divorced and began dating another woman (whose grief right now I can’t even imagine). The world has lost a brilliant man, his children have lost a loving father, and so many of us have lost a great friend.
DAME Magazine Link to Story
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Patricia Lockwood likes to write in bed. 'Priestdaddy' is her memoir

Patricia Lockwood became a famous poet on the Internet, a statement that raises many questions: Is “famous poet” even a thing? Isn’t poetry a stodgy and dignified endeavor, more suited to print magazines like the New Yorker than ephemeral, frivolous spaces like Twitter? And how was it that some of the smartest, most original poetry was being written by the daughter of a Catholic priest, a woman who never went to college, married at 21, and does her writing from bed in Savannah, Ga.?
Los Angeles Times Link to Story
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On Helen Gurley Brown's bio, "Not Pretty Enough"

If there’s nothing more American than a rags-to-riches story, then Helen Gurley Brown was truly an All-American Girl. Born in Arkansas in 1922, Helen Gurley’s world was rocked at age 10 by her father’s death in a freak elevator accident. Helen and her older sister were left to endure their mother’s unpredictable moods, strange ideas and disastrous plans.
Newsday Link to Story
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Emma Cline's 'The Girls' is a gorgeous, disquieting spin on Manson family dynamics

Los Angeles Times Link to Story
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Susan Faludi discusses ‘In the Darkroom,’ about getting to know her estranged transgender father

Writer and cultural critic Susan Faludi, author of the 1991 feminist classic “Backlash,” had been estranged from her father for decades when she received an email with what the sender described as “interesting news.” Steve Faludi was no more; after sexual reassignment surgery, her father was now a woman named Stefánie.
Newsday Link to Story

About

Kate Tuttle

I'm currently serving as President of the National Book Critics Circle. My reviews and articles about books have appeared in the Boston Globe, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Salon, Atlantic.com, and elsewhere. Native Kansan, longtime Cantabrigian, lately of Georgia, now in New Jersey. Mother, wife, pal.

Feel free to email me at kate.tuttle@gmail.com.