ISA HOPKINS

Raconteur. Adventurer. Kimchi Enthusiast.

Being an Ally (Or: A Decent Human Being)

Ta-Nehisi Coates weighs in on Bill Cosby, and his own previous failures to confront the rape accusations.  It’s a reckoning, and a lesson in how to face – and own – our shortcomings.   The alternative: this perfect Onion piece.   Issues of privilege – white privilege, male privilege, the privileges of fame and celebrity – are uncomfortable to grapple with.  Understanding that the world is not, and never has been, a meritocracy.. Read More

Pride Goes Before…

Generally speaking, I don’t recommend staying up late at night by oneself to watch a television show about a serial killer.  Unless that show is “The Fall.”   “The Fall” is a BBC show with one five-episode season under its belt – barely a blip, by American television standards – and a second due in 2015.  The first series aired last year and is available on Netflix; I’d had it recommended to me.. Read More

A Cry for Classical

Haven’t you heard?  Classical music is dead.  Again.  Another time.   I just put on “Pictures at an Exhibition” (on vinyl, no less) – “Symphony for a New World” was still spinning, restless and soundless on the turntable from which Dvorak had emanated just minutes earlier.  I may still be living on a couch but I’m at my aunt and uncle’s for the moment, and on Saturday my aunt and I – brutally.. Read More

You’re Standing On My Neck

Today’s post is from a guest writer!  Tom Schneider is a friend of mine.  He got a 1600 on his SATs, back when that meant two perfect scores instead of three mediocre scores, and he has interesting thoughts about things sometimes.  Sometimes, he will share those thoughts here.  If you crave more T-Schneid, follow him on Twitter:@RealCynicalJerk.   1. Thesis So.  I’m going to be writing a series of recaps of the complete.. Read More

Duly Noted

The last few weeks have entered into a period of crazy-busyness, kicked off with my move from the existential hell I’ve written of before.  Though there is a lot going on, I will make efforts to update more regularly – as it is I’ve accumulated quite a backlog of links to share:   – Firstly, for those who haven’t yet read it, Russell Brand’s essay on Margaret Thatcher is empathetic, intelligent, and generally.. Read More

Iron Lady to Iron Throne: Westeros as an Argument for “Society”

This post contains spoilers for all books in “A Song of Ice and Fire” and the entire series to date of “Game of Thrones.”   “There is no such thing as society.  There are only individuals, and families.” -Margaret Thatcher   “I am yours.  And you are mine.” -Ygritte to Jon Snow; Shae to Tyrion; Osha to Bruni (referenced)   You guys.  “Game of Thrones” has been so good this season.   The.. Read More

Nobody Knows How to Fund This: A Brief History of the Arts

The “Veronica Mars” Kickstarter project has just closed, but the conversations about how it might impact film financing have only just begun.  The idea of bottom-up financing for major projects – with profits going to the rights-owning studio, rather than to the individuals who have invested in the project – is disconcerting, to say the least (it also runs afoul of SEC regulations as written, although the crowdfunding bonanza has them rethinking some of.. Read More

Duly Noted

To keep you occupied over the holiday weekend:   – A fascinating (and vitally important) detailing of the process by which laws are actually enacted.  It’s not short, but then, it is a complicated process, and one in which significant pieces of publicly supported legislation endure dramatic alterations in often-underreported fashion.   – Who has two thumbs and is super amped for the S3 “Game of Thrones” premiere?  LOTS OF PEOPLE!  Including this.. Read More

Duly Noted

Lots of interesting things have been making their way through my browser lately:   – Retirement as Ratzinger’s most progressive legacy.   – Reconceptualizing the way we think and talk about sex… with a metaphor which actually implies – nay, requires! – the agency and consent of all participants.   – As a comedian, I find it enormously tiresome when people claim “BUT IT’S COMEDY!” as a way to excuse all kinds of.. Read More

Sasha Frere-Jones & the Problem of Criticism

The music critic for “The New Yorker” – one of my favorite magazines – hates, with a disdainful and fiery passion, the Foo Fighters.  Who are not one of my favorite bands, but my all-time favorite band.  It’s rather obnoxious, not only to put up with Sasha Frere-Jones’s occasional “witty” condescensions regarding the Davey Grohlton Band – but to endure his complete lack of justification.   As I discussed in this post about.. Read More