Portside Snapshot - August 6, 2015



Why My Fellow Adjuncts and I Decided To Form A Union at Our Community College

Luke Niebler
In These Times
The barriers to organizing adjuncts are real and difficult to overcome. We often don’t know our coworkers, we are decentralized and our lack of security creates a pervasive fear among adjuncts. However, the only way that we will be able to fight for increased pay, greater job security and a voice in the college is by working collectively.

Restoring Pell Grants for Prisoners: Reversing a 20-Year Ban

Alan Pyke
Think Progress
It’s been 20 years since federal Pell Grants were revoked from prisons during the tough-on-crime heyday of the 1990s, amid a bipartisan political fervor that helped transform U.S. prisons from a corrections system to a punishment business. Two decades later, mass incarceration is a runaway train, and America imprisons so many more people than any other country that it’s hard to even compare the thing in one chart.

How To Really Defend Planned Parenthood

Katha Pollit
New York Times
There are two reasons abortion rights activists have been boxed in. One is that we’ve been reactive rather than proactive. The second reason we’re stuck in a defensive mode is that too many pro-choice people are way too quiet.

Urban Planning in the Era of New Jim Crow

Ryan Lugalia-Hollon
Next City
As a discipline, urban planning is dedicated to understanding and addressing the complex problems of the city. Yet public safety is rarely taken up as a sphere of concern. Rather than rationalizing people’s failed life outcomes in a way that blames individuals for poor life choices, urban planners must help hold society accountable for past failures to construct real opportunity structures.

Love Control: The Hidden History of Wonder Woman

Kent Worcester
New Politics
The study of comic books has emerged in the last decade or so as a serious academic discipline. And it's about time. It's not news to many people that the stories and art found in these little magazines are not only entertaining; they also contain interesting, and sometimes profound, social content. Kent Worcester looks at three new books on Wonder Woman, the comic that emerged during World War II and was an early harbinger of feminist ideas.

These Scholars Have Been Pointing Out Atticus Finch's Racism for Years

Laura Marsh
The New Republic
One of the biggest literary stories of the summer has been the controversy over To Kill a Mockingbird author Harper Lee's new novel, Go Set a Watchman. It turns out To Kill a Mockingbird hero Atticus Finch, as portrayed in this new book, was far more racist than fans of Lee's earlier novel remember. Should they have been surprised? Laura Marsh talks to several scholars who say Finch's racism was here all along, if readers had only taken the care to look.




Portside aims to provide material of interest to people on the left that will help them to interpret the world and to change it.


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