New York City

Manhattan’s Lower East Side: Land of Delicious Diversity

Beth Kaiserman

When touring guests around New York City, one usually hopes to spend ample time outside the hectic hoopla of Times Square, Midtown and Union Square. Food people know that the best stuff lies in the outskirts, and though it can still be difficult getting get people “all the way” to Brooklyn, most tourists will at least take a trip to the Lower East Side, just across the bridge from Brooklyn but still in Manhattan’s borders.

How New York City Embraced the Chocolate Revolution

Angelo Franco

In more recent times, however, chocolate buyers have been inundated with new terms and compound words printed on the labels of this much sought-after sweet.   Artisan, single origin, blend, percentage, fair trade, are a few relatively new designations given to chocolate bars found everywhere from supermarket chains to small gourmet shops.  One of the newest of these nomenclatures is bean-to-bar.

Top Literary Cities in the U.S.

Gabriella Tutino

What determines a city as ‘literary?’ It’s not enough to have a large library, unique bookstores, or be the birthplace of a famous writer. Nor is it enough to be one of the top literate cities in the United States  Most literary cities have a strong writing program at one of their numerous colleges and universities, as well as bookstores and institutions hosting event after event. If anything, a literary city is a blend of the historical, cultural, and modern parts of literature, encouraging and inspiring future generations to appreciate and take part in the literary world.

Wherefore Art Thou, Bohemia?

John McGovern

If living the bohemian lifestyle is about creating, than it would be reductive to dismiss the crusty guy selling newspaper clip art outside of Prospect Park on principle. Dismiss him for making crappy art, sure. True, Hemingway and Baldwin probably benefited from the community of artists that they interacted with, but Emily Dickinson never left her room. Where you are might not hurt, but it might not help much either. What you do matters more. 

Celebrating 80 Years of History at The Apollo

Ted Fox

From its inception 80 years ago this past Sunday, the Apollo Theater probably exerted a greater influence on popular culture than any other entertainment venue in the world. Throughout the years the Apollo, and the thousands of great entertainers who have performed there, have led the way in the presentation of swing, bebop, rhythm and blues, modern jazz, commercially presented gospel, soul, funk and hip-hop. 

Celebrating Women in Design at MoMA

Sandra Bertrand

“Designing Modern Women 1890-1990,” The Museum of Modern Art’s current exhibit from their third floor design department, begs the question of what came first—the chicken or the egg.  Is modern woman an independent spirit, totally responsible for her own evolution?  Or is she a willing, sometimes unwitting product of the collective consciousness?  Defining not only who she is but what drives her is a question that has inspired and intrigued designers the world over, and MOMA has gathered some of the most talented interpreters over the last century who took on the challenge.  

Strength in Independence: The Strokes and The National

Sandra Canosa

A dozen years later, the roles aren’t exactly reversed, but the tunes have changed. In the spring of 2013, both bands released new and much-anticipated albums – the Strokes’ fifth, Comedown Machine, and the National’s sixth, Trouble Will Find Me. In terms of sheer numbers alone, the National outsold their former clubmates nearly 2-to-1 in their first week. Trouble Will Find Me popped up on Best of the Year lists from Pitchfork, Stereogum, and Rolling Stone and is nominated for a Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album. 

Williamsburg, Brooklyn and the New New York

Sandra Canosa

Once a sea of working factories, then a deserted and crime-ridden no-man’s land, Williamsburg at the turn of the 21st century became a budding haven for New York City’s proverbial struggling-artist types for its cheap rents and quick access to the creative haven of lower Manhattan. A rapid decade and change of gentrification, though, has turned the neighborhood into a coveted – and expensive – place to live, as well as a checkbox on any New York tourist’s bucket list.

The Rise of Neo-Burlesque

Gabriella Tutino

Part of the appeal of burlesque and neo-burlesque is its promotion of female empowerment, sexuality and acceptance of women of all shapes and sizes. The average woman is not the same size as the models we see on billboards and in magazines; there’s a thrill and appreciation at seeing these performers comfortable in their own skin. Burlesque performer Grace Gotham says in an interview with Scott Schuman that burlesque allows her to celebrate and explore her sensuality in a safe space. 

Is New York City Ready for a Democratic Mayor?

Jim Jaffe

New York hasn’t elected a Democratic mayor in 28 years. The winner of that race, Ed Koch, subsequently endorsed Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg. Both became mayor. Neither is a Democrat. And while analysts cite abnormal circumstances – as they inevitably do in such situations – a slightly longer perspective shows that New York has had a non-Democratic mayor for most of the past half century.

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