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If you think I’m about to ruin your childhood by reading the Grinch as gay character, you’d be even more disappointed to discover the truth about Dr. Seuss.

Did you know that The Cat in the Hat was based on blackface performance, and that The Sneetches was originally written as an anti-Semitic narrative? Did you know that And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, originally published in 1937, was undergoing revisions by Random House until 2017, due to the breadth of its bigotry in both text and illustrations?

How then would Dr. Seuss react if we read the Grinch as gay? It’s safe to say he wouldn’t be too happy. But if we’re going to read Dr. Seuss books anyway, we might as well reclaim their narratives. In this fourth installment of the “Sorry, Dr. Seuss” series, we’ll be re-reading How the Grinch Stole Christmas, a timeless tale about the meaning of Christmas, as well as a gay coming of age story. …


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The Italian Plaza, Ron Hicks

Wander(lust), the debut novella of Canadian author Jasmine Mah, simply put, is a written journey through the soul of every hopeless romantic and hopeless wanderer.

In this reflective first-person narrative, Jasmine Mah manages to capture ephemeral glimpses of love stories that read like an impressionist painting, with simultaneously as much and as little detail, color, sound, and feeling as Monet’s Jardin des Tuileries.


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19 of the 25 worst U.S. coronavirus outbreaks are in college towns, so if applying to party schools is the top priority of your college search, you’ll want to jot these ones down.

Wherever you go to college, you’ll find that students work hard as much as they play hard. That means you’ll find party goers whose defining trait is that literally nothing will stop them. …


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Children are like little sponges, and there’s no arguing that education opens minds. In the third grade, the novel Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White did exactly that, inspiring me and the rest of my 8-year-old classmates to become vegetarians.

Although it wasn’t E.B. White’s intention, the personification of the characters in the book, namely Wilbur, a pig in danger of being slaughtered, and his friend Charlotte, a sympathetic spider who weaves words in her web to communicate with the farmer, opened a group of third grader’s hearts and minds to animal rights. …


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I used to believe that I couldn’t possibly churn out a good piece of writing unless I was doing so in a coffee shop in between sips of iced coffee. That was until the coronavirus caused the closure of my local Starbucks, and I was forced to set aside my Basic Bitch of a habit and drink coffee at home like a normal person. This led me to the life-shattering realization that it wasn’t so much the atmosphere as it was the drink that fueled my creativity.

Apparently the secret to great writing (aside from great writing itself) is a drink to keep you going. Take it from these literary legends, all of whom have a personalized drink. Coincidence? …


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Original Artwork by R.E. Parish

It doesn’t come as a surprise that a growing number of today’s bestselling books were originally written as fanfiction. Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James was originally Twilight fanfiction, The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare was based on the Harry Potter novels, and After by Anna Todd was first published on Wattpad in the #OneDirection category. But writing fanfiction hasn’t always been a practice reserved for contemporary authors of beach reads and YA novels. …


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Original Artwork by Veronika Skalická, 2018

If you’ve ever been in love, you’ve only experienced half of what Gollum and The Ring do in their 478-year-long love story. Perhaps the most underrated couple in modern literature, we could all stand to learn a little something about passion from this hot and heavy pair from J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy. Here are just a few of the many reasons why Gollum and The Ring are the very definition of #RelationshipGoals:

Looks aren’t everything

Gollum and The Ring prove that the healthiest relationships aren’t based solely on good looks. After casually dating for some time, Gollum and The Ring start to get more serious and comfortable with each other. As a result, Gollum lets himself go physically. Regardless, his connection with The Ring remains as strong as the day they met for the first time in the river, proving their love is not a superficial one. And although The Ring is smaller than average, Gollum cares less about its size, and more about its integrity and how well it performs when he’s in the mood to use it. …


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Every day in high school, as soon as the dismissal bell rang at 3 o’clock, I’d gather my belongings from my locker and head to the computer lab or the school library to do my homework.

Like 19% of school-age children in America, I didn’t have WiFi or a computer at home, and most of my assignments required at least one of the two. Whether it was working on a shared doc for a group project, emailing a teacher, or googling images to include in a PowerPoint presentation, I couldn’t do any of it from my home.

When I went to college, I wasn’t able to afford my own laptop until the first semester of my sophomore year. But I never had to think twice about how I’d be able to type essays or where I could use a computer. In fact, I actually found pleasure in getting to spend so much time in the campus library, because it was a beautiful space filled with all the resources I could ever need, even if I wasn’t there to do schoolwork. So while all my friends were watching Netflix in bed, I was watching it in the library (shoutout to Millie for letting me use her account!). …


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This is part three of a series where we reclaim the problematic narratives of well-known Dr. Seuss books. From exoticism to blackface, Dr. Seuss’ bigotry was implicitly reflected in the storylines, messages, and illustrations of the children’s books we’ve been reading for generations.

For this installment, we’ll reread Horton Hears a Who, the classic tale Dr. Seuss originally wrote to address his anti-Japanese sentiments. Instead of reinforcing the white saviorism of this book, we’ll look at Horton and the Whos in an entirely different way — one that Dr. …


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In the last installment of the “Sorry, Dr. Seuss” Series we learned that The Sneetches was originally anti-semitic, The Cat in the Hat was inspired by blackface, and many of Dr. Seuss’ most well-known books are filled with problematic illustrations and hidden messages disguised as wholesome life lessons portrayed through the shenanigans of fun-loving, quirky characters. To continue the trend of reclaiming the narrative, this time, we’ll reread Gertrude McFuzz as a trans character.

Gertrude McFuzz is the protagonist of the second storyline in Yertle the Turtle. She’s also a trans icon with a symbolic journey.

Dr. Seuss introduces Gertrude McFuzz as a “girl-bird,” who feels extremely uncomfortable in her own skin, specifically due to the appearance of her tail, which is all but a short, singular, “droopy-droop feather.” …

About

Kalea Martin

An editorial writer and linguist with a background in trade book publishing and a B.A. in Romance Languages & Literature.

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