Taking a deeper look below the story

Read. Watch. Listen. introduces you to the personal side of our faculty, staff and alumni. Participants are asked to answer three simple questions about their reading, viewing and listening habits – what one book or newspaper/magazine article is grabbing your attention; what one movie or television show has caught your eye; and what album/song, podcast or radio show are you lending an ear to.

Madeline Bassnett is an English and Writing Studies professor

Today, she takes a turn on Read. Watch. Listen.

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Mexican author Valeria Luiselli’s Lost Children Archive. A family road trip to the borderlands of Arizona in search of two lost children and the Apache homeland becomes a powerful indictment of U.S. border policies, reminding us that ‘deportation’ and ‘removal’ are euphemisms for the ongoing and historical practice of genocide. Although I only just finished it, I’m already planning to read it again.


My movie viewing has been limited to the plane recently, but If Beale Street Could Talk stands out in any venue. Based on James Baldwin’s novel, the film is directed and written by Barry Jenkins (Moonlight). Visually stunning (even on the plane), Beale Street gives us an unflinching look at love and the impact of racially motivated injustice.


I’ve been enjoying the Uncover CBC podcast. The first two seasons include an exposé of the ‘self-help’ organization/cult NXIVM, and an investigation of the unsolved bombing and crash of CP Flight 21 in 1965. The current season, The Village, takes a queer historical look at Toronto’s gay village in the 70s and 80s in the wake of Bruce McArthur’s recent arrest and murder convictions. Focusing on an earlier series of brutal and still unsolved murders, the podcast asks whether McArthur could have been responsible, and if not him, then who?

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If you have a suggestion for someone you would like to see in Read. Watch. Listen., or would like to participate yourself, drop a line to inside.western@uwo.ca.