In National Geographic, Jonathan Franzen covers the slaughter of migrating songbirds in the Mediterranean.
Vice magazine has a reputation for being shameless about their content, but yesterday, the magazine made the rare move of pulling a photo-essay after it inspired a series of outraged responses. The feature, a fashion spread called "Last Words," re-created the suicides of seven female literary icons: Virginia Woolf, Iris Chang, Dorothy Parker, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Sylvia Plath, Sanmao, and Elise Cowen. After being roundly berated, the magazine released a sheepish apology and pulled the feature from their website. The photo spread remains in the print edition, which has already gone on sale.
Bookforum holds a Riot Grrrl Roundtable: Lisa Darms, Johanna Fateman, Kathleen Hanna and Sheila Heti discuss the new Riot Grrrl Collection and take stock of punk feminism.
Granta is currently hosting a literary week in Nairobi, where the magazine will launch its latest issue, "Best of Young British Novelists 4," but the literary magazine continues to show signs of turmoil. After a recent flurry of departures, two more people are leaving the journal: sales and marketing director Brigid Macleod and sales manager Sharon Murphy.
In addition to being a writer, a new book reveals that Ernest Hemingway was also a failed KGB spy. According to the authors of Spies: The Rise and Fall of the KGB in America, Hemingway was briefly recruited as a "dilettante spy" in 1941 before taking a trip to China. He was nicknamed "Argo," and "repeatedly expressed his desire and willingness to help" Soviet agents he met in London and Havana. Despite Hemingway's enthusiasm, his work as a KGB spy was short-lived: he failed to "give us any political information" and was never "verified in practical work."
The New York Times profiles Luke Jankow, former rocker and "heir apparent" to the powerful literary agent Morton L. Janklow. Janklow talks with the Times about opening for Ted Nugent, growing up in "the epicenter of literary Manhattan" and the New York publishing industry: "I'm not part of their club... I just showed up. I wasn't an English major at Yale. My summer job wasn't at The New Yorker, even though I am a fan. I'm just a weird Martian to them, I guess."