misc non-fiction 2018
by Louie Leyson
Sappho’s enshrinement in pop culture “as [a] love goddess,” according to bell hooks, has been essential in suppressing a long-held narrative of love constructed primarily by male poets (hooks, xxi). However, Sappho’s conceptions of love (at least in their fragmentary, translated forms) do not seem to fulfil hooks’ criteria for romantic love. While hooks views love as a verb, the subject of Sappho’s poetry primarily experiences love as a noun—a flame, a hook, a snare.
by Naoki Hasegawa
The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down recounts a conflict that occurred between a Hmong family and an American hospital regarding the treatment of a Hmong epileptic (in the eyes of the Western medical tradition) girl, Lia Lee. The author, Anne Fadiman, makes her best attempt to give both sides of the story.
By Sophie Chen
In a society so deeply imbued with patriarchy, women and men struggle to navigate their relationships with love and power, leaving many distraught and hopeless. bell hooks’ all about love: new visions is both a celebration of love and its cathartic abilities, as well as a call to action. She urges her readers to embrace a shared meaningful definition, thus treating the enigmatic concept as a verb rather than a noun. However…