Random, bulletpointed items:
Music history: In response to a new Spanish-language version of the “Star Spangled Banner,” President Bush has said that “ the national anthem ought to be sung in English,” and Sen. Lamar Alexander has even introduced a resolution requiring it be sung only in English. Both probably don’t realize that in 1919, the U.S. Bureau of Education commissioned a Spanish-language version of “ The Star Spangled Banner,” and the US State Department website features four-separate versions of the anthem in Spanish. Via ThinkProgress.
Free gift: Anthropologist Lewis Hyde’s books include The Gift: Imagination and the Erotic Life of Property (about how art exists in a gift economy instead of a commodity one) and Trickster Makes This World: Mischief, Myth and Art (which likens artists like Marcel Duchamp to mythological tricksters like Coyote, Hermes, and, from Chinese lore, the Monkey King). Hear an audio conversation on themes from both books with Hyde and University of Indiana English professor Scott Russell Sanders.