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When most people think of Jane Austen's novels, they probably think of love and romance. But Jake Weisman doesn't.

In fact, according to a recent tweet from the Comedy Central writer, he wants to make his feelings clear that "Jane Austen does not write love stories."

He's not completely wrong. Jane Austen was funny.


She nailed satire, and her commentary on social mores during her time were ridiculously spot-on.

But her stories also featured love. And romance. And (gasp!) feelings. That's not a bad thing. And Austen fans near and far chimed in to remind Weisman of exactly that.

Because — spoiler alert — literature can be more than one thing. It can be both satire and romance. It can be both mystery and adventure. It can be both comedy and science fiction. Books can even be all those things at the same time.

Clearly, Weisman's tweet struck a nerve, and it's not surprising. Often certain genres of books, like romance, are largely written off or seen as less than.

Why?

Because the people who most often write and read those books are women.

It's a real problem because the publishing industry, like so many others, tends to be very male centered.

Ever wondered why books written by women are often labeled "women's fiction" but books written by men are just "fiction"? It's because, historically, men have been the default and women the subcategory. And attitudes like the one in Weisman's tweet are part of the reason. Those attitudes suggest that "love stories" are automatically beneath brilliant writers like Austen. And that only when her work is called something more "impressive" like "satire" is it worthy, which simply isn't true.

After all, books, like people, can have many layers — many brilliant parts of their whole.

This article originally appeared on 09.06.17


Being married is like being half of a two-headed monster. It's impossible to avoid regular disagreements when you're bound to another person for the rest of your life. Even the perfect marriage (if there was such a thing) would have its daily frustrations. Funnily enough, most fights aren't caused by big decisions but the simple, day-to-day questions, such as "What do you want for dinner?"; "Are we free Friday night?"; and "What movie do you want to see?"

Here are some hilarious tweets that just about every married couple will understand.

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Photo by Jeff Burak on Unsplash

Most Americans associate Lady Liberty with welcoming immigrants, but that's not what she was meant to represent.

This article first appeared on 07.07.20.

If Americans were asked to describe the Statue of Liberty without looking at it, most of us could probably describe her long robe, the crown on her head, a lighted torch in her right hand and a tablet cradled in her left. Some might remember it's inscribed with the date of the American Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776.

But there's a significant detail most of us would miss. It's a feature that points to why Lady Liberty was created and gifted to us in the first place. At her feet, where her robe drapes the ground, lay a broken shackle and chains—a symbol of the abolishment of slavery.

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Paul Rudd in 2016.

Passing around your yearbook to have it signed by friends, teachers and classmates is a fun rite of passage for kids in junior high and high school. But, according to KDVR, for Brody Ridder, a bullied sixth grader at The Academy of Charter Schools in Westminster, Colorado, it was just another day of putting up with rejection.

Poor Brody was only able to get four signatures in his yearbook, two from what appeared to be teachers and one from himself that said, “Hope you make some more friends."

Brody’s mom, Cassandra Ridder has been devastated by the bullying her son has faced over the past two years. "There [are] kids that have pushed him and called him names," she told The Washington Post. It has to be terrible to have your child be bullied and there is nothing you can do.

She posted about the incident on Facebook.

“My poor son. Doesn’t seem like it’s getting any better. 2 teachers and a total of 2 students wrote in his yearbook,” she posted on Facebook. “Despite Brody asking all kinds of kids to sign it. So Brody took it upon himself to write to himself. My heart is shattered. Teach your kids kindness.”

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