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The Way to a Convoluted America’s Heart is Through the Stomach

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For the older more metropolitan foodie generation of our parents and older cousins, David Chang may be a familiar name because of his restaurants, most notably Momofuku and NoodleBar. For us Millenials/GenZ-ers, David Chang is a bit more well-known because of his appearance in a Buzzfeed Worth It episode. (If you are still unsure, go back to the episodes “$13 BBQ Ribs Vs. $256 BBQ Ribs • Korea” and “$17 Fried Chicken Vs. $500 Fried Chicken” by Buzzfeed Worth it.)

However, the reason that I introduce this foodie to the Goucher public is because of Chang’s Netflix Original show, Ugly Delicious. The show came out in the tail end of February, and I spent one of the days of my spring break binge watching seven episodes of it (I had already seen the first episode). Now, the reason this is a solid show is not due to the influential names like Steven Yuan or Jimmy Kimmel who make guest appearances. Nor because of the mouthwatering foods like dumplings and fried chicken. But because of Chang himself and his unabashed personality as an American with a neo-metropolitan, Generation X outlook on life and food.

Unlike all other food shows on TV, Ugly Delicious does not have Chang teach the audience how to make obsessive and obscene foods. Nor is he trying the craziest of concoctions out there, giving a bad reputation to food joints and countries around the world. Instead, what Chang does is ask blunt questions about food and cultures, giving way to a thinly veiled political exploration.

To give the run-down as to why this is a political show that is not to be ignored is because when one delves deep enough into the food culture and the culture of the food, there comes the point where one must discuss racism and appropriation and wars and bloodshed. And in this day and age, when food seems to be the only thing worth bonding over, us inhabitants of the 21st century should know more about what we put into our body other than the calorie intake or dietary status. Now, as for Ugly Delicious, Chang overtly confronts the political issues. Sometimes it is addressing the unknown but omnipresent biases and racisms that plague the consumption of food. Such as why when eating Chinese food, one may feel as though MSG is destroying the body but when gorging on a bag of chips the only thing felt is that New Year’s resolution slipping away. But other times Chang outright asks political questions, giving insight as to why some people in the world think a certain way, such as when Chang talked with a Vietnamese restaurant owner who was a refugee in the 70s, over a meal with shrimp and crawfish. They discussed at one point how 40 years back the Vietnamese were fighting the KKK for their ability to work but now were hesitant when it came to wishing for a less complicated way for other refugees to go to America or other democratic nations. Chang has a way to get people to open up, be it pit masters in Tennessee or sushi masters in Japan, and while he challenges his audience’s beliefs, at no point does he try to change those ideals. However, ever so slightly he gets one to think and see things from a different point of view.

America is a melting pot. School House Rock sang about it; teachers teach about it, writers write about it. However, even with that, we have barriers to the type of foods. Everything is of a particular category, and when arguing against those put in place boxes, questions emerge. What qualifies fried chicken as authentic? What makes a pit-roasted pig BBQ but a Peking Duck not BBQ? What Chang does so honestly, is that he tastes, learns, watches, talks, and asks the questions that aren’t always asked but may be at the back of our minds.

So, while it is not the food itself that kept me listening for most of the day, I’m okay with that because the conversations that were going on about the food, cultures, and politics behind everything made the show a success.

Featured image: Chef David Chang. Photo Credit: Google Images

Goucher Students Published in Charm City Stories

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On Friday, April 6th, Charm City Stories, Baltimore’s first student literary and art magazine of mental and physical health, will release its first publication. The magazine will feature the work of at least four Goucher students: Donché Golder, Natasha Hubatsek, Michelle Cheifetz, and Ruth Diaz-Rivera.

Print copies of the free publication will be released at Johns Hopkins University at a gallery exhibition in the Second Decade Society Room of the Center for Visual Arts from 7-9pm. The publication will also be available online at charmcitystories.com.

Charm City stories is inspired by the field of Narrative Medicine, the idea that effective and humane healthcare relies on the ability to interpret and be moved by the stories of others. The first annual publication builds on the collaboration of writing departments at Johns Hopkins, Goucher, Loyola, UMBC, University of Maryland College Park, and Morgan University. The first annual publication of the free magazine is sponsored by the Mellon Arts Innovation grant from Johns Hopkins University.

One day, Goucher writing professor Katherine Cottle asked her writing students to submit at least one piece for publication before they left class, and this was the assignment that led to the publication in Charm City Stories for Donché Golder. Golder, ’18, submitted a poem, entitled “This is what you need to hear, and why.”

Through his poem, Golder explores themes of healing and accountability. “Without beating around the bush,” he said, “the poem is about sexual assault. The bulk of the poem addresses the agony of those who have been effected by sexual violence/abuse and the last four lines drive the point home: ‘I could have inserted a name, but this poem isn’t for one person./ This poem is directed at “you,” whoever “you” may be,/ wherever “you” are, for whatever “you” have done wrong./ This is what you need to hear, and this is why.’”

Golder, a 4th year English Major, Professional Writing minor, was inspired to submit for Charm City Stories because, he admitted, he hadn’t been published since seventh grade. “I’ve come a long way since then and I think it shows in my work,” he said.

To find out more, visit charmcitystories.com.

Events in Baltimore (March 17th – March 30th)

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Events in Baltimore (March 17th – March 30th)

 

KEY:
*​ ​18+
**​ ​21+

March 17

  • Santa Librada album release party w/ Gateway to Hell and Holy Fingers at The Windup Space
  • Kurt Deemer Band, Cancled Stamps, Divining Rod, The Jennifers at Ottobar
  • “Don’t Kiss Me. I’m Not Irish” Dance Party** at Ottobar
  • The Mantras, Squaring The Circle* at Metro Gallery
  • “FOOD NOT BOMBS” Benefit at Sidebar
  • Herd of Main Street, Run Come See, Echo Bloom at Joe Squared
  • The Legwarmers: Ultimate 80’s St. Patrick’s Day at Rams Head Live!
  • Torrey Smith Family Fund Charity Basketball Game at Royal Farms Arena
  • Schubert The Great at Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Center
  • Gallery Show: Ernest Kromah “Legacy of an Icon” (ongoing) at The Motor House
  • Zip Into the Yellow Light ft. Abdu Ali at The Motor House
  • Revival Series: “The Big Heat” (1953) dir. Fritz Lang at The Charles Theater
  • Sugar ‘n’ Spice at The Crown
  • Skin Tight Soul Party at The Crown
  • “Family Life” (2017) dir. Cristian Jimenez & Alicia Scherson (3 shows only!) at The SNF Parkway

March 18

  • Drinking and Dragons** at The Windup Space
  • Little Tybee The Reign of Kindo, Del Florida at Ottobar
  • The Sweet Spot Baltimore: Mardi Gras Edition* at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Baltimore Symphony Youth Orchestras Concert at Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Center
  • Romeo and Juliet at The Lyric
  • Coffee Fest at Baltimore Convention Center
  • “Stage Russia: Chekhov’s Three Sisters at The SNF Parkway
  • Bobbi Rush, Josh Stokes, Lambda Celsius & Internet Boyfriend at The Crown

March 19

  • The Noise Presents: Iced Earth – The Incorruptable World Tour and more! at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Comedy Night! at Sidebar
  • Revival Series: “The Big Heat” (1953) dir. Fritz Lang at The Charles Theater
  • “Sight Unseen and Secret Psychic Cinema co-present Spatial, Celestial, Cerebral: Short Films by Woman Filmmakers (one night only!) at The SNF Parkway

March 20

  • Baltimore Boom Bap Society at The Windup Space
  • Brown Angel, Hangers, Tombtoker, Wayward at Sidebar
  • The Great Uprising: Race Riots in Urban America during the 1960’s at Red Emma’s Bookstore Coffeehouse
  • “Everyman at the Parkway: Big Night (1996) dir. Stanley Tucci & Campbell Scott (one night only!) at The SNF Parkway

March 21

  • Snail Mail, Shame, Romantic States, more TBA at Ottobar
  • Soft Kill, Choir Boy, Blacksage, Carl Gene* at Metro Gallery
  • Red Sun Rising, Imbued, Old Eastern at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Ether, Deep Rest, Dead Empires, Pickwick Commons at Sidebar
  • Miguel at The Lyric
  • The Art of Comedy Open Mic at The Motor House
  • Revival Series: “Festival!” (1967) dir. Murray Lerner at The Senator Theatre
  • “Stage Russia: Chekhov’s Three Sisters at The SNF Parkway
  • TWEN (TN), Den-mate, Hexgirlfriends, Albert Bagman at The Crown
  • Co-op Happy Hour with BRED at Baltimore Bicycle Works
  • Michael Loadenthal presents The Politics of Attack at Red Emma’s Bookstore Coffeehouse
  • “Maineland” (2017) dir. Miao Wang at The SNF Parkway

March 22

  • Bugg, Wildhoney, Post Pink + Ultra Beauty at The Windup Space
  • Steely Dan vs Fleetwood Mac Vinyl DJ Night** at Ottobar
  • Forever Came Calling, In Her Own Words, Hold Close, Something More, Chris Swartz* at Metro Gallery
  • Elohim at Baltimore Soundstage
  • MUNK, Evergroove, Xactil Xperience at Sidebar
  • BSO Pulse: Valerie June at Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Center
  • Turntabliss Thursday’s w/ DJ Pope at The Motor House
  • Film Screening: Release at The Motor House
  • Revival Series: “The Big Heat” (1953) dir. Fritz Lang at The Charles Theater
  • Everything Will Be Okay (A stand-up comedy show) at The Crown
  • “The Times of Harvey Milk” (1984) dir. Robert Epstein at The SNF Parkway

March 23

  • Shannon and the Clams, LIP at The Windup Space
  • Lightning Bolt, Glockabelle, James Twig Harper, Book of Morrin at Ottobar
  • Movements, Can’t Swim, Super Whatevr, Gleemer at Metro Gallery
  • Our Last Night – Selective Hearing North America tour 2018 w/ I The Might, Don Bronco, Jule Vera at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Hungover, One Life To Lead, Matt Talley at Sidebar
  • Kevin Hart: The Irresponsible Tour at Royal Farms Arena
  • The High & Wides (early show!) at Joe Squared
  • Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky at Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Center
  • “12 Days” (2017) dir. Raymond Depardon opening at The SNF Parkway
  • “A Ciambra” (2017) dir. Janas Carpignano opening at The SNF Parkway

March 24

  • Icon for Hire, Makeout, Courage My Love at Ottobar
  • “Feed The Tree” 90’s Alternative Party w. DJ Matthew Rubbish** at Ottobar
  • Breakforth & Think Again, Indianhead, Palm Trees in Moscow, The Revived* at Metro Gallery
  • Barely Alive & Virtual Riot, Anoxex, Cybin Quest, Don DC, Campbell at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Dark Waters End, Genevieve, Pathogenic, Emerge A Tyrant, Constituents at Sidebar
  • DysDopia: Comedu Music End of the World Party at Joe Squared
  • Area 301, Milton J and The Leftovers, Old Eastern, The Control** at Fish Head Cantina
  • Kevin Hart: The Irresponsible Tour at Royal Farms Arena
  • Classical Revolution presents Lost & Found at The Motor House
  • Revival Series: “Crisis” (1946) dir. Ingmar Bergman at The Charles Theater
  • “Belly and Set It Off” (1998/1996) double feature (one night only!) at The SNF Parkway

March 25

  • Expert of Nothing at The Windup Space
  • Ottobar Equinox Spring Flea Market at Ottobar
  • ATM, George’s Bush, Joe Biden, Mallwalker at Ottobar
  • Gost, computer Magic, Ca8al* at Metro Gallery
  • Timeflies, Bryce Vine, Baby Raptors at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Revival Series: “Festival!” (1967) dir. Murray Lerner at The Senator Theatre

March 26

  • Horatio Dark at The Windup Space
  • Generations Tour: Mega Ran, Non Like Joshua, and more! at Ottobar
  • Comedy Night! at Sidebar
  • Revival Series: “Festival!” (1967) dir. Murray Lerner at The Senator Theatre
  • Revival Series: “Crisis” (1946) dir. Ingmar Bergman at The Charles Theater
  • “Gummo” (1997) dir. Harmony Korine (one night only!) at The SNF Parkway

March 27

  • Norma Jean, Gideon, Toothgrinder, Greyhaven, Birthright
  • Cloak, Mother Moon* at Metro Gallery
  • Revival Series: “Festival!” (1967) dir. Murray Lerner at The Senator Theatre
  • Filthy (TX), Nightmare Difficulty & Sword Prom at Holy Frijoles

March 28

  • The Screams, Morning Dew, Dedyuth, Triple Backflip, Committee at Ottobar
  • Watain, Destroyer 666, Tomb at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Sidebar Flea Market! at Sidebar
  • Drake Bell, Tyron, Joe Kirk, Cecilia Grance, Brian Hardy at Fish Head Cantina
  • Revival Series: “Edward Scissorhands” (1990) dir. Tim Burton at The Senator Theatre
  • Royal Brat (MN), No Hair, Eggman at True Vine Record Shop
  • Resounding Silence at Red Emma’s Bookstore Coffeehouse
  • Patsy’s Rats, Outer Spaces, Glue Traps at Asian Taste

March 29

  • Billy Lyve & Ill Luck, Jaymoney Hackett, Ignorant Idols at Ottobar
  • Daddy Issues, PLRLS, James & The Giant Peach* at Metro Gallery
  • The Contortionist, Silent Planet, Skyharbor, Strawberry Girls at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Flower at Sidebar
  • Control Top, Empath, Vo//id, Wipeout at Joe Squared
  • Revival Series: “Crisis” (1946) dir. Ingmar Bergman at The Charles Theater
  • MLK, Jr. and the Memphis Strike at Red Emma’s Bookstore Coffeehouse

March 30

  • DA KID EMM, Teemonee, and more!*
  • Joh Works, Death by Bong, Dj Selah* at Metro Gallery
  • Australia’s Thunder From Down Under* at Baltimore Soundstage
  • Apex tha Genius, Elaye, Lil Millzz, Yung Easy, Silent Tough Guys, Dre Thompson at Sidebar
  • The Fun Boys, Phase Arcade, Phantasm, Lushfarm at Joe Squared
  • Eve to Adam, Blacklight District, VEER, Calisus, Demyze at Fish Head Cantina
  • Saved by the 90’s with the Bayside Tigers at Rams Head Live!
  • Jimmy Buffett and The Coral Reefer Band at Royal Farms Arena
  • Women’s History Month Performance Celebration at The Motor House
  • “Flower” (2017) dir. Max Winkler opening at The SNF Parkway
  • “Outside In” (2017) dir. Lynn Shelton opening at The SNF Parkway
  • “The Chine Hustle” (2017) dir. Jed Rothstein opening at The SNF Parkway

Featured Image: Baltimore’s Snail Mail. Photo Credit: BrooklynVegan

KATYA CASTRO

The Poetry Corner

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This semester, the Kratz Center for Creative Writing is sponsoring a series of events entitled “Poetry as Community.” In conjunction with this theme, the Q has asked student poets to write about poets whose work they appreciate, to send in along with their own poems.

Here is Goucher poet Donché Golder, ’18, on poets who he considers to be great:

Lady Ise 877-?940

Lady Ise is a Japanese poet who wrote her work and the ‘Waka’  form. The term ‘Waka’ refers to poetry written in a 5-7-5-7-7 metre, (5-7-5 look familiar?) although it was once an all encompassing word form poetry in Japan. Lady Ise was the premiere female poet in Kokinwakashū, the first anthology of waka commissioned by Emperor Daigo. She is also, alongside Ono no Komachi, one of the premiere female poets in the Japanese early classical canon. Her works on the season are very beautiful and when translated are among some of my favorites.

*Note: Waka when translated into English or other languages may not always retain their metre.

ISE SHŪ 37 (*Ise Shū is the poetic memoirs of Lady Ise)

yo ni sakanu        Never blooming in this world,
mono ni ariseba    Were it such a thing,
sakurabana        A cherry blossom;
Fito ni amaneku    To all and sundry
tugezaramasi wo     It would be better not, to announce it so!

KOKINWAKASHŪ XVIII: 1000 (located in the 18th book of the kokinwahashū, the 1,000th waka chronologically.)

yamagaFa no        A mountain brook
oto ni nomi kiku    Babbling is all I hear
momosiki wo        Over the many-stoned palace
mi wo Faya nagara    Swift as the current would I return to the days
miru yosi mo gana     I saw it-how I wish it could be so!

 

Fujiwara No Teika 1162-1241

Like Lady Ise above, Fujiwara No Teika (Teika), was a renowned Japanese poet who wrote in the waka form. His works were inspired by the occurrences in his life, and show fluctuations due to his status at court and his physical health. Nonetheless he is still an inspiration to me as a poet. His works are recorded in the Senzaishū and the Shinkokinshū.

SENZAISHŪ V: 355

sigure yuku        Touched by drizzling rain,
yomo no kozuwe no    All around, the treetops
iro yori mo        With their colours say
aki Fa yuFube no    Autumn in evening is
kaFaru narikeri     A time of change, indeed.

SHINKOKINSHŪ VIII: 788

tamayura no        Fleeting, indeed, are
tsuyu mo namida mo    Dew and tear drops, both
todomarazu        Unceasing;
nakibito koru        She loved
yado no aki kaze     This house, where Autumn winds blow now.

 

Lucille Clifton 1936-2010

Lucille Clifton was an African American Poet born in New York City.  Since it isn’t my job to give you a full chronicle of her life, I’ll keep it brief. Clifton’s work focused on the African American experience, both as an African American woman and as a member of an African American family.  She was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for her works Good Woman: Poems and a Memoir, 1969-1980, and Next: New Poems, which were both published in 1987. Clifton was also Poet Laureate of Baltimore City (My hometown). All in all, Clifton’s work speaks to me as an African American and makes me aspire to write as well as she did.

homage to my hips

these hips are big hips

they need space to

move around in.

they don’t fit into little

petty places. these hips

are free hips.

they don’t like to be held back.

these hips have never been enslaved,

they go where they want to go

they do what they want to do.

these hips are mighty hips.

these hips are magic hips.

i have known them

to put a spell on a man and

spin him like a top!

 

my dream about being white

hey music and

me

only white,

hair a flutter of

fall leaves

circling my perfect

line of a nose,

no lips,

no behind, hey

white me

and i’m wearing

white history

but there’s no future

in those clothes

so i take them off and

wake up

dancing.

 

Other poets Donché recommends:

Featured Image:  Lucille Clifton. Credit: The Poetry Foundation

Goucher Poets: Donché Golder

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As a part of this semester’s theme of community, the Kratz Center for Creative writing is sponsoring a series called “Poetry as Community,” bringing local poets to campus to build new connections. To add to this conversation of poetry as a means of creating community, the Q is asking student poets to share their poems. To start off this series, here are a couple poems from Donché Golder, ‘18.
In his words, Donché Golder is an aspiring poet and a native of Baltimore City. He’s a 4th year English Major, Professional Writing Minor who plays chess and reads manga in between stressing over whether he will be employable after graduation.

To read about poets that inspire Donché, click here.

Hallmark Scene

Look at it
The fire place lit
Gifts sit idle
Under the tree
Children sit around
Smiling
Crying
The golden retriever smiles
At the feet of father
His pipe lit
Mother stands behind
The red armchair
In front of the window
Where we witness
Another White Christmas

Thanks for another
Noninclusive representation
Of a capitalistic holiday

 

Lover’s Exchange (List of Sedoka: Read from right to left)

Shu
you reaches this When
and vanished have will sun the
.contrast in pale will moon the

Omaa
gently rest words Your
.heart my is that bed the on
.later arrive will response My

Shu
.love received have I
draws note the on fragrance The
.you to closer ever me

Omaa
,touched truly am I
.away far stay must you but
.die you’ll ,you sees father If

Shu
.wrath his seen have I
,armies vast his seen have I
.beauty seen have too I but

Omaa
you ask not do I
,here emotions your still to
.letters these for yearn I but

Shu
letters the like And
,you before appear will I
.sun black the of night the on

 

יעל

The monster sits in the dark

and peers deep into the truth.

 

He looks back at them,

lustful incarnations in the cradle of time.

 

He recalls יעל.

Her curly brown locks,

and the way she didn’t hesitate

to embrace him.

 

His guard let down.

Her skin smiling, elephant tusk

wrapped around a child of Adama.

She, born in gods image,

bore into him.

 

He drank of her milk.

Secure in her tent,

he fell asleep.

 

She stared into the eyes of a beast

whose true existence could not be fathomed

by weaker men;

men tired from wars: internal and external.

They fade.

 

The monster sits in the dark

retells the truth of a woman of light.

 

 

 

Featured Image: Poetry Broadside created by Donché Golder.

Meet the Band: Cries for Help

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How much do you know about the Goucher music scene? Do you know about any of the bands here at Goucher? A few days ago, I had the opportunity to interview John Eng-Wong to talk about his band Cries for Help and what direction he wants to take the group in. The band Cries for Help was formed one night in early September of 2017, only a single day before their first performance at one of Goucher’s many open mic nights. Current band members include Goucher freshman John Eng-Wong as lead guitarist and singer, Goucher freshman Erica Manson on piano, Goucher freshman Andrew Harper on drums, and Goucher sophomore Dylan Samuel on bass and rhythm guitar. Frontman John met pianist Erica in a Goucher music class, and almost immediately afterward, the two decided to pursue music together in a band. Not too long afterwards, drummer Andrew and bassist Dylan both found the band through the Independent Music Club here at Goucher. Since then, Cries for Help has built up a repertoire of 9 finished songs and have played over a half dozen shows together as a full group.
In terms of music genre, Cries for Help considers themselves to be a punk band with emo undertones. The band’s major musical influences include the Obsessives, Slaughter Beach, Dog, the Hotelier, the Smiths, Alex G, and Frank Ocean. Lead guitarist John Eng-Wong says he hopes that band will eventually get into the Philadelphia emo scene. According to John, Cries for Help also plans to do some studio work over the summer to create recordings for all their songs and potentially start releasing albums. Currently, the band manages to hold full band practices two to three times a week while crammed in a single on the third floor of Probst. When I asked John where he draws inspiration from as he writes his lyrics and music, he told me “I want to write things that are hard for me, both as an artist and as a human being.” There is a massive difference between a piece of music that is hard to play because of tempo or note complexity and a piece of music that is hard to play because of its emotional impact or personal connection to the musician. Some songs can be both and some songs can be neither. John then explained to me how playing and creating music allowed him to express emotions and communicate ideas in ways that words could not by themselves. As both an artist and musician myself, I could not agree more.
Cries for Help is playing a show in Baltimore on March 31st at a venue called Big Red Booking with several other local artists, including My Heart, My Anchor, At Face Value, and Heart for Hire. I would highly recommend taking advantage of the opportunity to watch these outstanding musicians at work and get a taste of the Baltimore music scene. Follow the band’s Instagram at @criesforhelp or check out John’s personal Bandcamp at https://johneng-wong.bandcamp.com/.

Do We Really Want to Live Forever?

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If you’ve spent any amount of time with me in the past couple of weeks, I’ve probably tried to get you to watch Altered Carbon—a new cyberpunk noir murder-mystery based on Richard K. Morgan’s novel of the same name that recently came out on Netflix. The show is set in a world where humans have found a way to download personalities into bodies (a.k.a. Sleeves), and in doing so, the human form has essentially become disposable and interchangeable. While the following is mostly my own musings, I will try to avoid spoilers where possible, but if you don’t want spoilers go watch the show then read this.
First off, let’s talk about pain for a bit. Humans have, as a society, generally accepted that pain is a bad thing. The International Association for the Study of Pain defines it as “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage, or described in terms of such damage.” What does this mean for the world of Altered Carbon? The IASP definition mentions one of the principal factors: damage. We, in our frail human bodies, are extremely susceptible to damage. We are not exactly the sturdiest things around. And as of right now, we have no way of recovering from many types of damage. But what if we could?
Altered Carbon’s Protectorate has their sleeve technology, Elysium (the film, not the afterlife) has their Med-Bays, and Star Wars has space magic. Escaping the physical limitations of our own bodies and mortality (and mind you, I’m only counting glaringly obvious ones here, so no mech suits, A.I., or crazy life-support machines in this issue) is something we mortals seem to be mesmerized by. In this context, where either the real impact of any damage is reduced (as in Altered Carbon and Star Wars); or where damage is easily repairable, does it become less negative?
We see this interaction between damage and cost play out in Altered Carbon when Lieutenant Ortega tries to arrest Kovac for “sleeve damage” after a fight. Her reaction is what one would expect if a cop in 2018 caught someone smashing a car. It’s still a serious offense, but doesn’t have nearly the same moral implications, which is, in my view, much more significant. It’s almost as if our current ethical and practical dilemmas (punishing those who cause pain and harm) have become the future’s holdover laws. In the same way that we see Tulsa, OK’s “You need an engineer present to open a soda bottle” law as old-fashioned, or as some kind of meme, a future society may eventually come to find our laws to have no contextual grounding for them.
Let’s extrapolate from this something we hear about briefly in the show: death. Now, we’re talking about sleeve death, not real death, because that’s another can of worms entirely. It’s reasonable to say that death, right now, is a bad thing. It is, as far as any of us can prove, the end, and therefore, any damage that causes death is something that we as a society find in our best interests to criminalize. But what if we could just plug ourselves into a new body and keep going? Bodies still cost money, and they are still things you own, so it’s still property damage, but it would be as easy as activating car insurance.
So, this lack of a true conclusion leads well into the question I want to ask: considering a society where the practical justifications to outlaw, criminalize or marginalize a given thing or behavior has been addressed, should we judge solely on moral objections? If so, can we do it fairly and accurately? Going a little further still, to what extent can we really compare what we know as our human experience to that of a society like this? Personally, I’d like to say that while I’m often the first to present moral objections, I’m also the first to acknowledge that those morals are entirely baseless and set in nothing but my own conviction. Because of this, I do not at all think that any judgment we pass can really be called fair and accurate, especially considering how completely different our experiences are.
I would love to hear what you think, so you can email me at cavic001mail.goucher.edu with questions, comments, thoughts, and suggestions for shows or topics you want me to take a look at.
Catch y’all later!

Poetry as Community

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It is not so frequent an event that speakers are introduced as having created oceans. Oceans with “clear and clean water,” into which one can be submersed, “with no part left dry.”
On Thursday, February 15th, poets Airea D. Matthews and Ladan Osman visited Goucher for an evening of dinner, conversation, and, most importantly, poetry. They were the first in a series of poets whose visits will be sponsored by the Kratz Center for Creative Writing at Goucher College.
Typically, the Kratz Center sponsors one visiting writer event in the fall semester. For example, last semester Elizabeth Strout made a visit, and in previous years, other big names like Sherman Alexie, Seamus Heaney, and W.S. Merwin have come to Goucher. Then, in the spring semester, the Kratz Center sponsors a visiting writer to teach a course. This semester H.G. Carrillo is leading a fiction writing workshop. Goucher alumni Edgar Kunz is also visiting and teaching creative writing. In addition to these annually-run programs, however, the Kratz Center is also sponsoring something new this year—an “experiment,” in the words of Bill U’Ren, current Kratz Director and Goucher creative writing professor.
The Poetry Series is the experiment. Although U’Ren is the acting Kratz Director, the go-ahead for this experiment was given by last year’s co-directors Madison Smartt Bell and Elizabeth Spires. Meant to work in conjunction with this semester’s theme of “community,” the series involves creating several smaller events with visiting writers, rather than try to acquire big-ticket names. The series is also an attempt to organize a variety of readings which may not be the most traditional. For example, Matthews and Osman both employed mixed media presentations, using images along with their work. Future visiting poets include The Black Ladies Brunch Collective, a group of poets who work collaboratively.
Goucher poetry and peace studies professor Ailish Hopper was the curator of the series (and the author of the lovely introduction at the Thursday night event). As the curator, Hopper reached out to poets in the broader Baltimore community and asked for their help in creating the events. To create a pair for a joint reading, she would first contact one poet, and then ask whom that poet would like to read with, be it “a friend, or mentor or poetry-crush,” as Hopper put it. The poets were then asked what the phrase “poetry as community” meant to them. The focus, or subtitles, for each event, came from their answers to this question. Aptly, Hopper used a metaphor to describe her involvement as curator in this process: “I was like a sail on a sailboat, and all these winds came along to push the sail,” said Hopper, miming the movement of blowing winds to represent the various people who made the series possible.
At the event on Thursday, throughout the evening Matthews and Osman showed their friendship and respect for each other, each sharing stories about the other. At the end of the night, Hopper thanked both for their time, their poetry, and, ultimately, for their togetherness. Matthews and Osman laughed and looked at each other. “We really love each other,” said Matthews.

The Poetry Series has already been building connections between members of the poetry community. Of the 40-50 people at Thursday night event, there were a number of local poets, who teach in colleges, high schools, and afterschool programs. One outcome of this community-building is co-publicity and the creation of a master list of all the poetry events happening this spring. If you’re interested in attending poetry events on or off campus, check out the list below!
The final visiting poet of the semester, Rudy Francisco, who specializes in spoken word poetry, will lead a master class at Goucher in the morning but will perform in the evening at the DewMore Baltimore Poetry Festival. Hopper hopes that Goucher students connect with Francisco and make an effort to travel into the city for the festival.
Upcoming events at Goucher feature Poets Jenny Johnson and francine harris on March 29th, 7-9 in Batza Room and The Black Ladies Brunch Collective on Thursday, April 12th, 7-9, also in Batza.

On a final note, the Q is hoping to publish poems and spark poetry-centered conversation this semester in connection with the idea of poetry as community and poets as truth-tellers.
Go to an event and compose a response. Or be inspired in any other way. Write a poem… passionate, reflective, heart-breaking, fast, slow, rhyming, free verse…whatever your style is and wherever your heart is, just write.
Then send it into the world.

Throne of Glass: A Review

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Like every Young Adult Fantasy novel these days, Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas has it all: a swashbuckling teen heroine who’s lived through more travesties in her eighteen years of existence than most people have in one lifetime; a creepy male antagonist who is hell-bent on world domination; and the quintessential duo of (male) best friends vying for the main character’s affection (of course, one of which is grumpy and stand-offish while the other is a lovable playboy). All this, along with a “healthy” dose of female competition, adorable animals, names that cannot be pronounced, and magic.
Published in 2012, Throne of Glass was not an instant success. Sure it had raving reviews, but unlike Maas’s books nowadays, it did not debut on the New York Times Bestsellers List. What made it a classic in the ever growing and fast-paced industry of YA fantasy are the characters and the world that Maas expands upon throughout the series.
However, I plan on only discussing the first book, so here we go.
The main character is named Celaena Sardothien, a first-rate has-been assassin, fighting in a competition to become the King’s Champion. She’s a bit self-centered, a bit egotistical, and only on occasion willing to play nice (as befitting a true eighteen-year-old). So, along with her new friends, Prince Dorian Havilliard and Chaol Westfall, Captain of the Royal Guard, Celaena must figure out a way to stay alive in the tournament to buy her freedom, keep her head down in the castle of her arch enemy and catch the castle murderer before she becomes the next victim. Piece of cake.
All in all, Throne of Glass is good, but not a great first book. The pacing isn’t too fast nor is it too slow. It checks off all of the boxes necessary for YA fantasy: court intrigue, a shadowy presence, snappy comebacks, minimal romance (compared to the series presently) and innocent friendship; not to mention a dedicated fan base who will love the series till their last breath. What makes the book truly worth your time is the well-articulated and beautiful style of writing that Sarah J. Maas has. I mean, just the way she describes a forest gives way for pause.
“The forest had gone silent. The ebony hounds’ ears were erect, though they didn’t seem to be bothered by the stillness. Even the soldiers quieted. Her heart skipped a beat. The forest was different here. The leaves dangled like jewels-tiny droplets of ruby, pearl, topaz, amethyst, emerald, and garnet; and a carpet of such riches coated the forest floor around them. Despite the ravages of conquest, this part of Oakwald Forest remained untouched. It still echoed with the remnants of the power that had once given these trees such unnatural beauty.”
Maas’s words flow naturally in such a way that many authors struggle with, and it is due to her ability to write images, characters, dialogue, and action that could entice someone to pick up the next book. Sarah J. Maas does a remarkable job of pulling you in just enough with the characters, plot, and storyline. But it is her gift as a storyteller that ensnares a reader that leaves you with wanting more.

Readings in Baltimore (March 1st – March 16th)

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UPCOMING READINGS IN THE AREA (through March 16)
For more information: http://www.theivybookshop.com/event

Thursday, March 1: Eric Puchner In Conversation With Nate Brown: Last
Day On Earth
BIRD IN HAND

Tuesday, March 6: Giles Milton: Churchill’s Ministry Of Ungentlemanly
Warfare: The Mavericks Who Plotted Hitler's Defeat
THE IVY BOOKSHOP

Wednesday, March 7: Elliot Ackerman: Dark At The Crossing
THE IVY BOOKSHOP

Thursday, March 8: Peter Edelman: Not A Crime To Be Poor: The
Criminalization Of Poverty In America
CHURCH OF THE REDEEMER

Monday, March 12: Elana Zaiman: The Forever Letter: Writing What We
Believe For Those We Love
CHIZUK AMUNO CONGREGATION

Tuesday, March 14: The Writing Seminars Presents: Jessica Anya Blau, Jane
Delury And Rahul Kanakia
JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY WRITING SEMINARS

Tuesday, March 14: Writers LIVE: Joshua Clark Davis: From Head Shops To
Whole Foods: The Rise And Fall Of Activist Entrepreneurs
MD STATE LIBRARY FOR THE BLIND AND PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED

Wednesday, March 15: Antero Pietila: Not In My Neighborhood: How
Bigotry Shaped A Great American City
BALTIMORE COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY – PIKESVILLE BRANCH

Thursday, March 16: Brown Lecture: Dr. Mary Frances Berry: History
Teaches Us To Resist: How Progressive Movements Have Succeeded In
Challenging Times
ENOCH PRATT FREE LIBRARY, AFRICAN AMERICAN DEPARTMENT

Thursday, March 16: Imbolo Mbue: Behold The Dreamers
THE IVY BOOKSHOP

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