Arts & Culture

That's What They Say
8:55 am
Sun July 7, 2013

Marked nouns: a hit at gender equality?

On this week’s edition of “That’s What They Say,” host Rina Miller and Professor of English at the University of Michigan Anne Curzan discuss the irksome “ess” added to the end of nouns to indicate a female in words like authoress, actress and governess.

These “ess” words are ubiquitous in the English language. But do we really need them? And does the distinction in fact diminish the word’s meaning? This practice in linguistics is called markedness.

Markedness is about an asymmetry in, for example, a pair of words where one is a more neutral term - the dominant term, and one is marked somehow - it’s specialized,” says Anne Curzan.

Examples include authoress versus the unmarked author, or actor versus actress. In these examples, there’s arguably no difference between the marked and neutral term beside the "ess" added to indicate the noun is female. However, as Curzan explains, history has had a pejoration of the marked word due to sexism in the past.

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Arts & Culture
6:01 pm
Sat July 6, 2013

Finding Meaning In The Mosh Pit Among Often-Reviled Groupies

Shaggy 2 Dope, left, and Violent J make of the rap duo Insane Clown Posse, seen here in their stage makeup in 1999.
Joseph Cultice AP

Originally published on Fri July 12, 2013 12:49 pm

The bands Phish and Insane Clown Posse have spawned some of the most rabid fans in music history. Their world of obsession is not an easy one to break into, but on a warm December night in Miami back in 2009, pop culture writer Nathan Rabin went to see a concert that would inspire him to enter the orbit of these infamous groupies.

He wrote a book about them, You Don't Know Me But You Don't Like Me, and tells weekends on All Things Considered guest host Rebecca Sheir about his first-hand look at the two often-reviled sub-cultures.

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Arts & Culture
1:42 pm
Sat July 6, 2013

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts leader set to retire

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) - The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts executive director has announced his retirement after 23 years, but will remain on the job until a successor is hired.

The Kalamazoo Gazette reports that it could take up to a year to replace Jim Bridenstine. He is an art historian who earned his bachelor's degree from The College of Holy Cross in 1967 and a master's in the History of Art from George Washington University in 1975. He completed Harvard University's Institute of Arts Administration program in 1978.

Culture
8:00 am
Fri July 5, 2013

Happy Birthday, Michigan Radio! Celebrating 65 years of public service broadcasting

Celebrating 65 years of broadcasting.
Credit Michigan Radio

Sixty-five years ago today, WUOM aired its first broadcast from temporary studios in Angell Hall on the campus of the University of Michigan.

U of M was one of the first educational institutions to apply for an FM license. The station's first broadcast went on out on the brand new, high fidelity FM band at 91.7. It has been broadcasting on this signal ever since. Today, the station broadcasts on two more signals (WVGR 104.1 FM in Grand Rapids, and WFUM 91.1 FM in Flint).

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Culture
12:39 pm
Thu July 4, 2013

Michigan’s oldest consecutive Independence Day parade marks nearly eight decades

People watch the 79th annual Hollyhock Lane Independence Day parade in Grand Rapids.
Lindsey Smith Michigan Radio

People are celebrating Independence Day today with parades in cities across the state.

Kids scrambled to grab laffy taffy. Politicians from both sides of the aisle wore tennis shoes and shook people’s hands.

Robbie McCollum watched from her backyard. She says the Hollyhock Lane Independence Day parade is the big summer event in Grand Rapids' Ottawa Hills neighborhood.

“The kids really look forward to it. Our children grew up riding in the parade. I remember when they celebrated 50 years. But I’ve lost track,” McCollum said.

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Stateside
4:48 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

The history of 4th of July celebrations

The Parade Company via theparade.org

With the 4th of July at hand, it's a good bet many of us have a backyard barbeque in our plans, maybe catching a fireworks show or doing one of your own in your backyard.

That got us thinking about the ways Michiganders have marked the big National Holiday over the centuries, and for that, we turn to our Official Stateside Historian.

Bill Loomis writes for the Detroit News and he's the author of "Detroit's Delectable Past: Two Centuries of Frog Legs, Pigeon Pie and Drugstore Whiskey." He joined us today in the studio.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
4:44 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

New memoir details the struggles of a single parent living on a farm in northern Michigan

Mardi Jo Link is the author of "Bootstrapper: A Memoir."
Facebook

One of the best things about sharing each other's stories is how we can learn from each other.

And especially as Michigan has weathered the Great Recession, so many people in our state have had to face challenging periods, times when money was tight when you dreaded finding another past-due notice in the mailbox or phone call from a creditor.

Then factor in the challenges of being a single parent trying to raise a family and stretch a dollar.

That's the story Mardi Jo Link shares in her new book: "Bootstrapper: A Memoir. From Broke to Badass on a Northern Michigan Farm," published by Knopf.

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Stateside
4:40 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Noise complaints led to prohibiting late-night fireworks in Michigan

Sarah Cwiek Michigan Radio

You don't have to look at the calendar to know the 4th of July is at hand. Just open your window and chances are you'll hear folks all over Michigan take advantage of the 2012 fireworks law, the one that allowed larger and louder fireworks to be sold and launched.

But the second year of the new state law may find things a little quieter. A raft of complaints prompted lawmakers to tweak the fireworks law, allowing local governments to ban overnight use of consumer grade fireworks on and around holidays.

Andy Webb, owner of Captain Boom Fireworks in Otsego, joined us today.

Listen to the full interview above.

Arts & Culture
1:53 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Detroit music landmark could be lost to I-94 expansion

The United Sound Systems building on Second Street in Detroit could be demolished in an I-94 expansion plan.
Credit DetroitWiki

The United Sound Systems building on Second Street in Detroit could be demolished in an I-94 expansion plan. The recording studio has a rich musical history dating back to the 1930s.

Artists such as Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, Miles Davis and George Clinton have recorded there.

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Arts & Culture
5:24 pm
Tue July 2, 2013

ArtPod heads up north

Where to go? What to read? ArtPod's got you covered.
Bug_girl_mi Flickr

There’s nothing ArtPod hates more than humidity. Don’t even mention the word “frizz” right now.

And since so much of southern Michigan swings between flash flooding to feeling like a sauna, ArtPod is doing what all true Michiganders do: heading up north.

Specifically, Petoskey. And not just for the pretty bay views or the $5 kiddie-size gelato.  

Petoskey has a humming arts community in its own right, one that draws artists and art buyers from across Michigan, even out of state.

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Arts & Culture
12:10 am
Tue July 2, 2013

Part of an Irish Hills landmark coming down

A demolition crew is removing the two observation decks on top of the Irish Hills Towers
Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

Part of the iconic Irish Hills Towers in Lenawee County is being demolished this week.

Members of a small wrecking crew are slowly dismantling the two observation decks that top the six story tall wooden towers.   The work is expected to take a few days, depending in part on the weather. 

The towers have been a landmark along U-S Route 12 in southern Michigan since the 1920’s and they're on the National Register of Historic Places.  

But age and neglect have taken a toll in recent years.

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Stateside
5:27 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

What books should you consider reading this summer?

Flickr/Sarah Sosiak

Now that summer has truly taken us into her embrace, we’ve been thinking of some of our favorite summer pleasures. And it was fairly unanimous: one of the sweetest times of summer is lounging around in the sun, maybe on a beach, maybe your favorite spot on your back porch or yard, and in your hands is a good book.

Keith Taylor coordinates the undergraduate program in creative writing at the University of Michigan, he is a poet and a writer, and he is simply the best at uncovering hidden gems for us to read and enjoy.

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Arts & Culture
1:08 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Photos from the Electric Forest Festival in Rothbury, Michigan

Julia Field

Michigan is home to a number of nationally renowned music festivals but one of the largest, and perhaps the most colorful, is the Electric Forest Festival.

This past weekend, thousands of music lovers from across the country converged at the Double JJ Resort in Rothbury, Michigan to see over a hundred bands and artists.

While most of the music was electronic dance music, a diversity of music genres were represented in the lineup. There were jam bands, rappers, world musicians, DJs, and even two marching bands.

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Arts & Culture
12:14 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Michiganders taking part in Gettysburg sesquicentennial

This painting depicts the Iron Brigade at Gettysburg. Composed partly of the Michigan 24th, it played a prominent role in the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg, July 1, 1863, repulsing the first Confederate offensive.
Artist Don Troiani

A large number of civil war re-enactors from Michigan are in central Pennsylvania this week to mark the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg.

Michiganders heard the first shots fired at Gettysburg.   And they were there a few days later, as the Confederates launched the ill-fated Pickett’s Charge, which failed to break the Union lines.

Don Everette is among the Michigan civil war re-enactors in Gettysburg this week.

He says he’s been to previous re-enactments of Pickett’s Charge that were highly emotional.

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Arts & Culture
10:37 am
Sun June 30, 2013

Historical marker stolen on the Western Michigan University campus

The WMU/East Hall historical marker was stolen sometime last week
flickr /Michigan Historic Markers

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) - A college prank?

Police at Western Michigan University are looking for a large historical marker stolen from outside the birthplace of the Kalamazoo school.

The marker was discovered missing Thursday at East Hall. Size would make it difficult to hide: Like other state markers, it's 54 inches tall and 42 inches wide.

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Arts & Culture
5:12 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

Snap Judgment brings 'storytelling with a beat' to Ann Arbor

Glynn Washington is the creator, executive producer, and host of Snap Judgment, as well as a Michigan native.
Twitter

Saturday night, Michigan Radio and the Ann Arbor Summer Festival welcome Snap Judgment to the Power Center. Snap Judgment is one of the newer additions to the public radio lineup and its creator calls it storytelling with a beat.

“I’m a big, big public radio head from a long time ago,” said Glynn Washington, the creator, executive producer, and host of the show. “But sometimes public radio can get a little bit boring. And I was trying to come up with an idea to get rid of the boring stuff and leave everything that I loved. What we try to do at Snap is get rid of the exposition, drop people right into the heart of the story, and the way that we do that is through soundscaping.”

Many of Washington’s personal stories and experiences have made it onto the show, sometimes even stories his family members have never heard. His mother often appears as a character in his stories.

"Sometimes Mommy doesn’t appreciate it too much," he confessed. 

Washington explained that while it has been difficult to maintain such a level of transparency on the air, it has also been very rewarding.

“It’s been interesting getting used to sort of bleeding into the microphone every week, but I do find it very, very cathartic in the end. I find that storytelling is kind of the way that I process my own issues. And, you know, stories have a beginning, middle, and end, but life doesn’t really have an end, and so putting these stops on things is helpful for me at least.”

The show on Saturday will feature some of the world’s best storytellers, and they have all been asked to tell a tale that will move the audience. Accompanying the storytellers is a live band directed by Alex Mandel. Washington expects that everyone who attends will not be disappointed.

“It’s a duet between the storytellers and the musician that really creates a new art form, and I’m really excited for everyone to hear it. You’re going to be blown away.”

Recently, The Atlantic wrote an article about Washington hailing him as “NPR’s Great Black Hope.” Washington said that while he loved the article, he felt that it was an unfortunate headline.

“I see what they were doing. ‘Let’s get the most clicks we can for our headline, let’s put something provocative out there.’ And I understand because I do it myself all the time,” he said. “I think what they were trying to say was that what Snap Judgment is doing is reaching out to audiences that public radio has traditionally left behind. If I wanted to be provocative, I would have called it This New American Life, but Ira would really be upset if I did so.”

Glynn Washington and Snap Judgment will be here Saturday at 8 p.m. in the Power Center. Tickets are on sale now. 

-Michelle Nelson, Michigan Radio Newsroom

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:14 pm
Thu June 27, 2013

Flint uses art to tackle important issues surrounding the city

Andrew Morton is one of the nine artists selected for Flint's master plan.

The city of Flint is currently working on a master plan to help shape the city’s future in the next 20 years. Part of that plan involves the role of arts.

Recently the National Endowment for the Arts gave a grant to hire nine artists who live in each of the city’s wards to explore the role arts can have in the community and get residents involved in the master plan.

One of those artists, Andrew Morton, is the artistic director of the Shop Floor Theatre Company in Flint, and he joined us today.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:12 pm
Thu June 27, 2013

Pipe organ festival hits Kalamazoo and Battle Creek

A pipe organ.
Flickr

If you can’t get enough of the soaring sounds of pipe organs, you’re in for a treat.

Starting Sunday and lasting through July 3, organists from five states will be attending and playing in Kalamazoo and Battle Creek for the Great Lakes regional convention of the American guild of organists called the Great Lakes Swell Organs.

Brooks Grantier, secretary of the program committee for the group, joined us today to tell us all about the festival.

For more information, visit http://agokalamazoo.org/

Listen to the full interview above.

Arts & Culture
4:09 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Wonder what it's like to be a woman in Detroit? Check out this video

A woman interviewed in "A Girl's Guide to Detroit."
4exit4 Vimeo

There’s been a lot of talk about changes in Detroit — who’s moving in, who’s moving out, who’s shaking things up.

But for all the clamor, there hasn’t been a lot of talk about one group in the city: women.

To get a look inside the lives of female Detroiters, check out "A Girl's Guide to Detroit," a mini-documentary by 4exit4 Productions.

From 4exit4’s Vimeo page:

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Arts & Culture
12:12 pm
Fri June 21, 2013

Detroit celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Freedom Walk tomorrow

Cover art for the recorded album of the speech
Screen shot from youtube.com YouTube

This Saturday marks the 50th anniversary of the 1963 Freedom Walk led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in Detroit.

A commemorative march down Woodward Avenue is planned for 9 a.m. tomorrow morning.

Fifty years ago, King’s address at the end of the march was the debut of his historic “I Have a Dream” speech, which he would deliver two months later at the March on Washington. Check out this post to listen to the moving speech.

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