Why ‘Farm Lit’ Is the Best

Last weekend I moved just outside city limits, to 2.3 acres of Indiana farmland. On summer break from our teaching jobs at the university, my husband and I have been busy attending to our new brood of chickens, constructing large compost bins, and harvesting mulberries. Perhaps this helps explain why I’ve been drawn to memoirs of city-girls-gone-country—books like The Dirty Life: On Farming, Food, and Love by Katie Kimball. But as it turns out, the rest of the country shares my fascination with f … [Read more...]

On the Other Hand: What We Learn From Chick-Lit

Each week in On the Other Hand, Ben Bartlett defies the common wisdom and identifies the other side of the story of cultural hot-topic issues.Louise Mensch makes a compelling argument: Women know what they like.In this article on Chick-Lit and standards, the romance author is comfortable stating that the success of her genre is pretty simple; it's a formula.  Women tend to be attracted to fantasy worlds in which men are strong, driven, excellent providers, and easy on the eyes.The genre c … [Read more...]