21 Comments

I have not read Monsters (yet) but I agree with you that our conversations around public figures are colored by deeply flawed, binary online discourse. It seems increasingly difficult for us to view people as complex and multi-dimensional. I thought about this often while working on Anna: The Biography -- she has done some good things, she has been extraordinary to some people, but she has also done some less good things and been cruel to others. I think we have long been trapped in a pattern of asking if someone is a "good person" -- especially in regards to women -- when in fact, people are just PEOPLE, all of us flawed, some more than others. With social media favoring black-and-white viewpoints, this gets lost.

That said, seeing Johnny Depp bounce back with that Dior contract boggles my mind. Especially since the brand profits off feminist T-shirts!

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The dior thing is BIZARRE. And Anna has somehow risen about all criticism - even the Andre Leon Talley stuff which made me very very sad, given that it happened shortly before he died. Loved your piece on the KL Met Gala, I meant to link to that (and forgot!)

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May 28, 2023Liked by Pandora Sykes

yeah, i nanny for the director of marketing at random house and she said it's been unavoidable as the demand for physical books has gone down :( i live in nyc so the public library is amazing but new releases have looooong waiting lists so i'll look secondhand, thanks for the suggestions!

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cancelled island!!! SUCH a good idea x

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The VERY SAME idea! Great find - thank you

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I read Monsters too, and had so many thoughts about it; I wrote about it here

https://katieclapham.substack.com/p/keanu-vs-the-monsters

I've unlocked the paywall on this post to share it here because I think the discussions on this book are SO interesting and I'd love to hear what more people thought of this book!

It's like a snake eating its own tail, having a take on the problematic is problematic in itself. Good on Claire Dederer for having a go but the first things that jump out are the additional problems that her arguments create.

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I really enjoyed this! Thanks for sharing

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One of my stand out memories from The High Low was a discussion you had about separating the art from the artist, and the lack of nuance in the world today. It has stayed with me and pops into my head whenever I see discussions, even outside the parameters of celebs/artists, that follow an increasingly binary rhetoric.

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I forgot we even had that discussion 😂 and even you reminding me has not jogged my memory in the slightest!! I wonder if my view has changed since whatever it was then...

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May 28, 2023Liked by Pandora Sykes

I think it’s because I was having a lot of thoughts on the topic at that time and the pod was one of the first places I heard discussing it! Then again, I have a scarily good long term memory - I even remember snippets of the PanDolly podcast days😅

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tyvm 😊 nice page good reading love it 😀

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Really interesting read Pandora, will definitely get hold of Monsters––I keep reading such brilliant reviews of it. I think so many of us are ready for more acknowledgment of nuance and the many shades of grey. I had a Lagerfeld moment too. I'd really enjoyed the BBC doc (although perhaps not the slightly 'mocking' tone ... "Who inherits? The cat?" It was interesting enough without that) and I was all set to include it in my weekly newsletter and then the post-Met Gala backlash came out. I concluded that watching the doc and enjoying learning about the life of KL was perhaps not the same as holding the world's most expensive celebration in his honour.

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I didn’t note the mocking tone! I was surprised to discover how many genuinely loving relationships he maintained. I had assumed he was a cold French Fashion fish. Stupid old me for assuming he (anyone) was just one thing!

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*he is German not French

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The artist is a Renaissance epoch invention. Medieval and ancient authors created masterpieces, but we don't know their names

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New here and loving it... but.. sorry, genuinely curious, why is the tree a he?

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Oh lol no reason, maybe bc the tree was tall or Hyperion sounded like quite Greek godly

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Hi Pandora! Monsters sounds so interesting, I’ll definitely have to look for a copy! Do you have any recent non-hardcover recs? They're getting so expensive in the states. Thanks so much :))

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They are horrible expensive in the states, I was shocked to see $30 is the norm when I was last there. I’m sorry :( Have you asked your local library if they are getting it in? Or try World of Books/ eBay for a second hand copy?

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