culture | KUOW News and Information

culture

Updated at 3:12 p.m. ET

Denis Johnson, the author behind the seminal collection Jesus' Son, has died at the age of 67. A protean stylist who made a career of defying readers' expectations, he crafted fiction, poetry and reportage that was often as unsparing as it was unconventional.

As I hurry home battling the rush hour traffic in the evening, I see a queue in front of the gates of the local mosque. Men in white skull caps, women clad in saris and burkas, young children with school bags on their backs — all are waiting with containers in their hands for a share of the nombu kanji. Mosques in the south Indian states of Tamil Nadu and Kerala distribute the kanji, a lightly spiced rice and lentil porridge, before the sunset prayers during the fasting month of Ramadan, which starts Friday evening.

Seattle's Chinatown-International District
Flickr Photo/Curtis Cronn (CC BY NC ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9hVGFD

Seattle officials are moving forward with plans to increase density in Chinatown-International District. It's the next in a series of neighborhoods undergoing a rezone. At a City Council meeting Tuesday, neighbors shared their concerns.

Kobe beef is supposedly the finest steak in the world. It’s very hard to get -- and very expensive -- in the United States. But it's getting easier and easier these days to find more affordable “American style Kobe beef" or “American Wagyu” at your neighborhood steak house or upscale grocery.

Courtesy of Libby Lewis Photography

There are many things to know about Roxane Gay. She grew up in Nebraska. Her family is of Haitian descent. She came to critical attention in 2014 for her best-selling collection of essays “Bad Feminist.” She teaches creative writing at Purdue University. She is the first black woman hired to write a Marvel Comics series, “Wakanda.” She kind of owns Twitter. But perhaps the most crucial thing you need to know about Roxane Gay is that she is awed by and in love with her craft, fiction writing especially, in difficult and delightful ways.

For some, death isn’t spooky or scary like Halloween. Hispanic families across the Northwest are preparing to celebrate the Day of the Dead.

The barbarians are invading Rome — again.

At least, that's the complaint of a group of Italian intellectuals protesting the "siege" of the city's cultural sites by outside enemies such as McDonald's and cheap souvenir shops.

Some 170 people have signed their names to an open letter appealing to UNESCO for help in combating the "commercial exploitation" of the ancient city.

Aneesh Sheth speaks at KUOW's Storywallahs event in early May at the Kirkland Performing Arts Center.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

The South Asian community in the United States has roots in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The community represents one of the fastest growing ethnic groups in the country. From 2000 to 2010 their population grew by 81 percent nationally, in Seattle the increase was 173 percent.

Seattle's Jewish Population Soars

Apr 3, 2015
Remaining edifice of the old Temple De Hirsch, Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle.
Flickr Photo/brewbooks (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman speaks with Matt Boxer, a researcher at Brandeis University's Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies, about the increase in Seattle's Jewish population. Boxer is part of a team commissioned by the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle to study the Jewish population.

This group of REI employees met at a Starbucks for bike-to-work day. Is there anything more Northwest than that?
Flickr Photo/Jonathan Colman (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman talks to Knute Berger, writer at Crosscut and Seattle Magazine, about what makes us "of the Northwest" and the history of how we got here.

Back in 1967 the rules for dating were fairly clear-cut whether you agreed with them or not. Check out this U.S. Navy instructional video, How to Succeed with Brunettes. (What is UP with that title, anyway?)

Professor Vincente Rafael On Filipino Folklore Origins

Aug 25, 2014

Vincente Rafael is a professor of history at the University of Washington, specializing in Philippine history, colonialism and nationalism. RadioActive youth reporter Maria Caoagdan interviewed Rafael for her story exploring Filipino supernatural creatures.

Unraveling The Family Folklore Passed Through Generations

Aug 25, 2014
Courtesy of the Caoagdan family

What if you grew up being told that the monster under your bed is real? Seattle is home to a large Filipino Community, and in the Philippines, superstitions and the existence of supernatural creatures are firmly believed. RadioActive's Maria Delmar Caoagdan was born there, and tells us what it's like.

In my family, whenever we walk through the woods, we say the phrase "tabi tabi po." Why? I don't know.

As a child, I did whatever my family told me and believed whatever they said. Occasionally, I'd also watch horror films that introduced me to Filipino mythological creatures. But after hearing my family's own paranormal encounters, I began to wonder if those myths really have some elements of truth.

The Origins Of American Hipsters

Aug 21, 2014
Justin Martin's book, "Rebel Souls."

Marcie Sillman talks with author Justin Martin about his book, "Rebel Souls: Walt Whitman and America's First Bohemians."

Nordstrom handout

Jeannie Yandel talks with Jean Kilbourne, creator of the film series, "Killing Us Softly: Advertising’s Image Of Women," about Nordstrom's decision to include disabled models and what that tells us about society.

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