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On this week’s episode, the critics discuss Dallas Buyers Club, an Oscar front-runner, featuring stunning performances—and radical physical transformations—from its lead actors, Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto. Based on a true story, the film follows Ron Woodroof, a homophobic Texan who, when diagnosed with HIV, begins illegally smuggling antiviral drugs into Dallas. Next, the Culturefest welcomes David Folkenflik, NPR’s media correspondent, to discuss his new book Murdoch’s World. How did the well-born Australian become an antiestablishment maverick of the news industry? And finally, with Slate’s assistant editor Laura Anderson, the critics discuss Margaret Mary Vojtko, an adjunct professor at Duquesne University whose death and alleged mistreatment by the university’s administration has become a cause célèbre for underpaid academics across the country.
Links to some of the things we discussed this week follow:
- Dana’s review of Dallas Buyers Club on Slate
- The Young Victoria directed by Jean-Marc Valée
- Philadelphia directed by Jonathan Demme
- Milk directed by Gus Van Sant
- Bryan Lowder’s Slate piece on filmic depictions of tragic gay characters
- Alias, a J.J. Abrams series starring Jennifer Garner
- Murdoch’s World by David Folkenflik
David Folkenflik’s work at NPR.com
- Laura’s Slate coverage of Margaret Mary Vojtko and the travails of adjunct professors in American academia
- Daniel Kovalik’s op-ed in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, initially covering Vojtko’s death
Dana: The Riddle of the Labyrinth, a new study of the ancient script Linear B, by New York Times writer Margalit Fox.
Julia: “Black Belt” by John Grant, a song worthy of an “autumnal strut.”
Steve: The 1962 short French film La Jetée, Green Acres Pie Stand in Livingston, N.Y., and the BBC radio show “Start the Week” with host Andrew Marr
Outro: “Black Belt” by John Grant
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This podcast was produced by Sally Herships. Our intern is Anna Shechtman.