CategoryArticles

Urban Presence

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The Visitation Sisters of North Minneapolis model gentleness and humility while living as a spiritual presence in a marginalized urban community. It looks like just another house on just another block in just another American neighborhood. Tidy hostas line the walkway to the front door, pretty wicker chairs are circled on the front porch, and the doorbell chimes in a familiar four-note melody...

Art: Revealing the Us In The Other

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It is not a passive thing to sit in the audience. It is also not a safe thing. We file in, avoiding eye contact and clutching tickets. We sort ourselves into aisles that are lettered and numbered in illogical fashion, we search for but can’t spell mezzanine, and we politely share the armrests as though nothing transformative is about to happen and as if we will emerge in two hours utterly...

Women’s Work

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A cancelled series reveal the fight for women’s pay equality is still underway. Once upon a time, in 1969, women weren’t “allowed” to wear slacks at the office. This wasn’t for modesty – miniskirts and tight dresses were fine, 9-5. The dress code was to keep gender difference clearly delineated, as in the classic insult to assertive wives: “She wears the...

Who Runs The World?

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In CBS drama Madam Secretary, patriarchy matters a little less. Madam Secretary (CBS, in its third season) breaks bold new ground in media portrayals of women leaders: Secretary of State Elizabeth McCord’s friends, family, colleagues, and even the President of the United States treat her as if, in fact, she can lead. On television and in film, when women are running corporations or...

Breakup Joints

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Anyone can think of a romantic spot to dine on Valentine’s Day, but finding the right restaurant to leave your lover is another story   I’M NOT A GOOD dumper. I have no style. Well, at least not the kind of style you might expect from a woman who has had as many husbands as you have fingers on your right hand. When it is time for me to check out of a relationship, I am gone. Not always...

Power on the Podium

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Leonard Bernstein once warned Eiji Oue: “Keep conducting that way and you’ll die of exhaustion” THIS PAST AUGUST, Hiroshima native Eiji Oue guest conducted seven Minnesota Orchestra musicians in Igor Stravinsky’s The Soldier’s Tale. The performance so stunned the audience that one musician was moved to visible tears, a percussionist gushed to performers “You’re all my heroes!,” and Libor Pesek...

Have Pie, Will Travel

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I COLLECT excellent pie-eating experiences the way some people collect Fiestaware. Deep in the dark winter months when no local fresh fruit is in season, I stare into the fire and dream, not of loves long lost, but of that slab of cherry perfection I consumed seven years ago in a tiny town somewhere between Rochester and Iowa. My ideal pie is a rustic one. Not for me those anemic, perfectionist...