Amanda Gorman Reads at the Super Bowl, Hachette Fires Center Street Editorial Director, and More

by Staff
2.8.21

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—publishing reports, literary dispatches, academic announcements, and more—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories.

Former national youth poet laureate Amanda Gorman performed an original poem titled “Chorus of the Captains” in a video montage that streamed during yesterday’s Super Bowl. In the poem, Gorman spotlighted how the game’s three honorary captains—an educator, a nurse manager, and a Marine veteran—have served their communities during the pandemic. (PBS NewsHour)

For the New York Times, Ben Smith reports on the recent firing of Kate Hartson, who served as the editorial director of Center Street at Hachette. Hartson was one of the few editors at Big Five publishing companies who were willing to pick up books by conservative firebrands such as Donald Trump Jr. and Jeanine Pirro. (New York Times)

“The mango rests uneasily between symbol and sumptuous fruit, especially in diasporic literature.” Urvi Kumbhat writes about the legacy of mangoes in South Asian diasporic literature. (Literary Hub)

“For me, the single sentence, the line, is supreme. I always go in thinking of not just what it means, but how it sounds, in my head and aloud.” Dantiel W. Moniz reflects on the physical experience of the sentence. (Los Angeles Review of Books)

“Fiction became my way to try and channel all those shards of life that you’d witness in the course of a day, the mundane details as well as the things that would take your breath away.” Te-Ping Chen recalls how working as a journalist in China helped inspire her debut story collection, Land of Big Numbers. (Rumpus)

“In the shouty Valhalla of pointlessly destructive literary feuds, a place of honor must go to the verbal duel between the poets Heinrich Heine and August von Platen.” Alex Ross writes about the homophobia and anti-Semitism at play in a feud between two nineteenth-century poets. (New Yorker)

Literary critic Bethanne Patrick recommends ten books publishing this month, including The Removed by Brandon Hobson and Under a White Sky: The Nature of the Future by Elizabeth Kolbert. (Washington Post)

Contributors to the winter issue of the Paris Review share recommendations for reading and viewing.