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Field Trip Friday: July 17, 2015

The Big News This Week

Harper published GO SET A WATCHMAN, a book written by Harper Lee, who wrote the classic TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. It is unclear whether GSaW was a first draft of MOCKINGBIRD, or a sequel, or whether Lee wanted the book to be published at all. Many are upset at the new book's portrayal of beloved character Atticus Finch as a racist.

The Week In Writing

- Justina Ireland wrote a moving blog post about the frustrations of being a minority in an MFA program. "It is condensing every microaggression you have had to endure for the past twenty years, distilling them into a bitter cocktail that you must drink again and again and again, sometimes only realizing after the fact that you swallowed poison," she writes. "I have never, ever, been so consistently injured by something I chose to do voluntarily. Never." (More from Justina in the next section as well.)

- What are your goals? No--specifically. Name them. In a post that will make you rethink keeping a Captain's Log (um duh, that sounds awesome) The Science of Us discusses the power of writing down your goals.

The Week In Reading

- Recent reviews of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ new book, BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME, in the Economist and New York Times have spurred a debate on reviews of literature written by and about Black Americans. "These reviews are not just about Coates’ book. They speak to the larger issue of quality, of what dictates excellence and who it is in our society that gets to declare something good or bad," Justina Ireland writes in BookRiot. "It speaks to issues of diversity and representation and to the bleak statistics surrounding traditionally published books featuring protagonists of color."

- Speaking of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, BookRiot examines whether or not the book should be considered YA.

The Week In Other Stuff

Sports world was killin' it this week, guys!

- The ESPY Awards (like the Oscars for sports) this week honored Caitlyn Jenner, who recently came out as transgender, with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. In an emotional speech, Jenner called for more tolerance and acceptance of the transgender community (get your tissues ready):

- Serena Williams is arguably (inarguably) America's greatest athlete, a claim she underscored by winning Wimbeldon this year -- her fourth straight major win, and a feat called the Serena Slam. Even J.K. Rowling got in the mix to say Serena deserves more respect. Thankfully Serena was shaking off the haters, dancing with fellow champion Novak Djokovic to 'Night Fever' at the victory dinner. Observe, replicate, repeat:

The Week In Random

- THE TWILIGHT MINI MOVIES ARE HERE. Don't mind us while we rewatch the first one over and over afterward.

- Mhairi Black is the youngest MP in the UK's House of Commons, at 20 years old. She used her maiden speech to scathingly rebuke the current government, like a badass. "We now have one of the most uncaring, uncompromising, and out of touch governments that the UK has seen since Margaret Thatcher." Watch:
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