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Rebecca Liu
Rebecca Liu is a commissioning editor at Guardian Saturday and a staff writer at Another Gaze.

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There are only girls on the internet

Book Review

August 2022

Rebecca Liu

Book Review

August 2022

I remember the first time I saw it, like a freshly alert hare alarmed by movement in the distant grasslands. It was 2013. Model...

Book Review

September 2020

Pankaj Mishra’s ‘Bland Fanatics’

Rebecca Liu

Book Review

September 2020

The Anglo-American commentariat is full of lofty egos. Pankaj Mishra has developed a reputation as their great deflater. ‘Watch...

The Anglo-American commentariat is full of lofty egos Pankaj Mishra has developed a reputation as their great deflater ‘Watch This Man’, the writer’s much-discussed 2011 London Review of Books essay on historian Niall Ferguson’s Civilisation, opens with an unflattering comparison of the author to The Great Gatsby’s Tom Buchanan, an old-monied bore (‘and boor’) who bemoans the demise of the white race, zips through the historian’s past admissions to being a ‘fully paid-up member of the neo-imperialist gang’, and ends with an observation that rings like a warning: ‘His next move shouldn’t be missed’ Ferguson threatened to sue: ‘I am owed, I repeat, an apology’ In ‘Fascist Mysticism’, his 2018 review of Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life – a book, Mishra writes, that shuttles between life advice (‘stand up straight’; ‘tidy your room’) and metaphysical machismo (‘consciousness is symbolically masculine and has been since the start of time’) – Mishra places Peterson in a broader European lineage of nineteenth-century ‘intellectual quacks’ who traded in ‘right-wing pieties seductively mythologised for our lost generations’ Peterson fired off a rant on Twitter In the introduction to his newest book, Bland Fanatics, Mishra writes that the former journalist Boris Johnson – now lauded by some as an icon who demonstrates the heights to which those in Britain’s Fourth Estate can ascend (to say nothing of the pre-existing proximity to power and privilege that stalks the profession) – makes, along with Donald Trump, a duo of ‘blond bullies perched atop the world’s greatest democracies’ It may be fun to poke and prod at these pompous opinionators choking on their own self-regard, each endlessly prevaricating newspaper column taking them further from the self-understanding they purport to command But the consequences of these men’s inability to understand the world they have tried to shape in their image have been disastrous ‘The barbarians’, Mishra writes, ‘were never at the gate; they have been ruling us from some time’   These essays are among the sixteen featured in Bland Fanatics, which compiles some of Mishra’s

Contributor

August 2019

Rebecca Liu

Contributor

August 2019

Rebecca Liu is a commissioning editor at Guardian Saturday and a staff writer at Another Gaze.

Jia Tolentino’s ‘Trick Mirror’

Book Review

August 2019

Rebecca Liu

Book Review

August 2019

Talk about the fates of young professional women today and you will often alight on two themes: the anxieties that come with living in...

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feature

June 2016

Heteronormativity and the Single Mother

Jacinda Townsend

feature

June 2016

I.   This spring, in cities and towns all over the United States, schools, churches and other organisations will...

fiction

December 2016

The Giving Up Game

Rowan Hisayo Buchanan

fiction

December 2016

The peculiar thing was that Astrid appeared exactly as she did on screen. She was neither taller nor shorter....

feature

April 2017

The White Review Short Story Prize 2017 Shortlist (UK & Ireland)

feature

April 2017

  click on the title to read the story   A Journey Through Famous by Kanye West by Liam...

 

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