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Harold Washington Library Center

Erma Bombeck, the Original Mommy Blogger

"Sometimes I can't figure designers out. It's as if they flunked human anatomy." If you read the newspaper between 1965 and 1996, you know who Erma Bombeck was. Her humor column chronicled the everyday life of American suburban mothers: carpooling, diets, children, housework, clothes shopping, suburban homes… She found the funny side of it all. […]

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Washington Politics: Might As Well Laugh

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Even to insiders, Washington, D.C. doings dwell in the absurd. With the primaries under way, I propose a few nonfiction books that take a lighter (if often still outraged) look at national politics. The first is a seminal look at electoral politics by the dean of Gonzo journalism: Hunter S. Thompson. Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail […]

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Happy Birthday, Mr. Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln, 1861 March 6. Matthew Brady, photographer. Source: CPL, Grand Army of the Republic Collection, 72.341

Few presidents are as respected as Abraham Lincoln. We all know some basic facts about the man who would have been 207 this year: he was tall, bearded, a lawyer and a politician; he famously debated Stephen A. Douglas, most notably about slavery; he was president during the Civil War and issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which ended legal slavery; […]

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After Dracula: Vampire Movies Today


It's been 85 years since the premiere of Universal's Dracula, starring Bela Lugosi, on February 12, 1931. Adapted from Bram Stoker's novel Dracula, it was one of the first entries in a great tradition of vampire films still alive and stalking unwitting victims to this day. If you thought the immortal vampire had finally been slain by […]

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The Studs Terkel Archive: a Vital Work in Progress

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The Voice of America, now a resource for America. "People are hungry for stories. It's part of our very being." Studs Terkel Last year there was some fanfare with the Studs Terkel Archive, which has a new home with the best of his videos coming home to Media Burn. Studs Terkal has left us such a wealth […]

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