| May 19, 2008
There was a remarkable atmosphere of synchronicity during the performance of Christian McBride's "The Movement Revisited" at Walt Disney Concert Hall on Friday night. And maybe a trace of irony as well.
The four-section suite for big jazz band, small...
| Jun 23, 2008
LA JOLLA -- As your eyes plot the final few steps down the central staircase in UC San Diego's new student center, they land on a red terrazzo text panel that reads: "Perfect order is the forerunner of perfect horror." Not exactly a soft landing but...
| Feb 6, 2009
The image of a glittering downtown Los Angeles skyline turned upside down, which opens Stacy Peralta's sobering "Crips and Bloods: Made in America," is both striking and unnerving. With that image, Peralta telegraphs a theme that will resonate in chilling...
| Feb 19, 2009
| 12:49 PM
In "The African Book of Names," a new work compiled by Askhari Hodari, there are more than 5,000 names deriving from 37 nations and more than 70 ethno-linguistic groups. One thing that sets it apart from other name books is that it makes clear that it's...
| Jan 20, 2009
In the year since Barack Obama's remarkable surge to the head of the pack of Democratic presidential candidates, we've been hearing a lot about the nation's new "post-racial" politics. The basic concept is this: Obama's acceptance by the white...
| Jan 25, 2009
The Sky Below
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: 288 pp., $24
Gabriel, the chimerical narrator of "The Sky Below," Stacey D'Erasmo's episodic novel of mayhem and myth, was not the sort of boy his "sad brown bear of a father" could bond...
| Jan 18, 2009
Winding down his first news conference as president-elect, Barack Obama indulged a question about the puppy he'd promised his daughters, Sasha and Malia. He noted there were "two criteria that have to be reconciled." On the one hand, there was a need...
| Jan 17, 2009
Valata Jenkins-Monroe contributed to Barack Obama's campaign and made a few phone calls on his behalf, but she doesn't consider herself a fanatic, not even with Obama posters, T-shirts, buttons, mugs, coasters and vases in her home -- along with a photo...
| Dec 21, 2008
Move over, ethnic scarf, the bow tie is making a comeback.
The humble men's accessory holds up better than a skinny tie when paired with this season's rugged American looks -- plaid flannel sport coats, suspenders, tweed long jackets and cardigan...
| Nov 21, 2008
Note to Al Qaeda: If you insist on trying to insult Barack Obama, the United States' first African American president-elect, falling back on the tropes of an America that no longer exists simply is not going to work. "Field Negroes" and "house Negroes"?...
| Dec 13, 2009
For those who follow the internecine squabbles of the young adult literary world -- nope, it's not all "Twilight" -- this past July brought a new twist to an old story. A book's cover that little resembled what's found inside is a perennial authorial...