All tagged laura briskman

Curling up with Oprah and Emma: The Faux Intimacy of Celebrity Book Clubs

In the mid-’90s, book clubs took a new form with Oprah. Oprah has been a uniquely influential personality in several ways, not the least of which is her culture of accessibility. Her book club selections are, as Anne Helen Petersen describes them in her book Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud, decidedly “midcult”—that is, not quite high art, but not quite lowbrow culture. They reflect a diverse authorship, often discover new and overlooked talent, and remain unintimidating to her substantial fandom.

Now, I certainly follow the arguments against Fifty Shades' literary cred. And perhaps the protagonist, a strong young woman on the first page, loses herself to whips and entrepreneurial dominance because it's spicier bedtime reading. Maybe we're all just a little jealous because many of us are aspiring writers and we're watching EL James take up our B&N shelf space.