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This week's Culture Vultures recommend:

Inside Out Art Studio, Heroines, and We Three Lizas


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Martha Bayne, founder of Soup & Bread, went out of her way for:

Heroines I read a sprawlingly sharp and exuberant interview between Gina Frangello and Kate Zambreno at the Rumpus and immediately went out to track down Zambreno's new book, Heroines. Furiously researched, Heroines is Zambreno's insistent attempt to move the "lost wives" of modernism—Jane Bowles, Viv Eliot, Zelda Fitzgerald— from the margins of their husbands' reputations to their rightful place at the center of their own life stories. Why, Zambreno demands, is womens' ambition so often pathologized, female creativity dismissed as hysteria? It's a question as potent now as in Paris in the 20s ("Today Sally Bowles would totally audition for America's Next Top Model and be cast as the alterna-crazy," Zambreno quips), and Heroines reads with an almost physical urgency, as though written in a hot, hot heat, as Zambreno tangles and untangles historic and fictional literary ladies (Emma Bovary, Nicole Diver), all while chronicling her own creative frustration as she trails her husband from one backwater academic post to the next, trying to dig herself out of her own alienated funk. It's totally smart, provocative, and oddly sexy.

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