15th of February: Mostly Just Kanye

Having dodged work, Valentine’s Day, and anything other than the Steam free weekend on Total War: Rome 2, I come to you late, and slightly hungover, with a whole load of articles, which, to be honest, lean heavily towards the Kanye-centric. They’re towards the end of the list though so if you, like everyone I care about, are indifferent (at best) to Mr. West, you can just stop before you get to them.

As ever, this reading list is available both as a blog and as a weekly newsletter – it’s up to you how you receive it.

Song of the week should really be a Kanye one but I’ll spare you. This came up in a random Spotify playlist, completely out of the blue, which is odd, as it’s new Lana del Rey music. More reminiscent of pre-Ultraviolence Lana.

  • The debate about arming Ukraine is probably going to keep rumbling on, and while I don’t think any of these critiques of the Brookings proposal do enough to emphasise the basic, inevitable, human cost of adding more weapons to the mix, together, their headlines are quite clear regarding the failings of the plan – from Brookings themselves, The Week, and Foreign Policy. Conversely, a good defence of a non-violent way of supporting the Ukrainian military.
  • Obama did a long interview with Vox, whose foreign policy section is interesting – War on the Rocks did a Realist summary of it. Also, this is, I think, Barry Posen’s standard article calling for restraint in American strategy but it’s good so.
  • This interview on European terrorism was from before the Copenhagen attacks, so it’s grimly prescient
  • Libcom make a decent case against the potential of radical electoral movements
  • Ally Fogg good on the British FGM statistics
  • I liked this look at Mandela as a strategist
  • Another one of those pieces about Chait and the PC wars from last week
  • Quite interesting on how the notion of ‘jaywalking’ was the result of a determined campaign by the automobile industry
  • The Guardian’s new dating feature is horrific and wonderful
  • This account of a chat between Taylor Swift and Jay-Z at the Grammys made my day

On which note, this is your chance to get out before it all goes Kanye.

When I heard there had been another ‘incident’ with Kanye, I got very excited as I knew it could only mean one thing: lots of articles about Kanye for me to delight over. The Internet did not disappoint.

  • First off, a clarification of the quirks in the awards process that led to Beyoncé losing out in the first place
  • Just the best news of the year
  • Wonderful idea – a professor is running a Kanye West course
  • Three articles in defence of Kanye as unfiltered and unapologetically Kanye – 1, 2, 3.
  • Finally, this by Sam Kriss is as much about Taylor Swift as it is Kanye and I don’t even really know what it is, but it’s brilliant

And that’s that! Have a lovely week everyone x

3 out of 22 this week, so it’s getting worse now.

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