| Dec 18, 2011
| 11:26 AM
Vaclav Havel, the former dissident playwright who led Czechoslovakia's 1989 "Velvet Revolution" against communism and then served as his country's president, died Sunday. He was 75.
Havel, a former chain smoker with chronic respiratory problems, had been...
| Dec 22, 2011
Look ahead: The presents have been opened, wrapping thrown away, and for a few quiet hours you've been curled up reading the new Steve Jobs biography, a gift from your dad. You find a surprising detail and call to your significant other, "Honey, did you...
| Dec 28, 2011
Helen Frankenthaler, a New York artist whose bursts of color achieved by pouring thinned paint onto canvas from coffee cans helped point art in fresh directions after the initial post-World War II explosion of Abstract Expressionism, has died. She was 83....
| Dec 29, 2011
When Herbert Nipson joined Ebony magazine's editorial staff in 1949, the publication, founded just four years earlier in Chicago, had a target readership of urban African Americans, and its stories reflected that sensibility.
But as the civil rights...
| Jan 1, 2012
Just before noon on a clear fall day, the Newman stage on the 20th Century Fox lot is alive with bright lights, hovering microphones and a full 105-piece orchestra. It's one of the final scoring sessions for "Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol,"...
| Jan 1, 2012
Return to David L. Ulin's review of this essay.
I shall attempt, in this piece, an appraisal of the civilization of Southern California, but it occurs to me that before I begin I had better give you some idea what the place looks like. If you...
| Jan 1, 2012
Open Letter: 324 pp., $15.95 paper
Dubravka Ugresic does not like karaoke. That doesn't stop her from trying it, just as her resistance to celebrity doesn't stop her from putting her head through a cutout on a Hollywood...
| Jan 9, 2012
As concertmaster for the orchestra that recorded the soundtrack for the movie "Psycho," classical violinist Israel Baker helped create a piece of pop culture that is regarded as one of Hollywood's most terrifying. He led the piercing attack of the violins...
| Jan 8, 2012
The quietest room in Hollywood may be the office where John Williams composes. In a bungalow on the Universal Studios lot, steps from the production company of his most frequent collaborator, director Steven Spielberg, Williams works alone at a 90-year-...
| Jan 5, 2012
Gordon Hirabayashi, who was convicted for defying the evacuation and internment of Japanese Americans on the West Coast during World War II and, four decades later, not only cleared his name but helped prove that the government had falsified the reasons...
| Jan 17, 2012
Elizabeth Brumfiel, a widely recognized scholar in the field of feminist archaeology who studied Aztec culture, examining not only the functional and economic significance of ancient relics but what scholars learned about changing gender roles and...