weekend links: Lil Nas X, Tumblr artists, sick girl narratives

Liberal Jane,  Save the Binary  (2018). Image courtesy the artist/ Artsy .

Liberal Jane, Save the Binary (2018). Image courtesy the artist/Artsy.

It’s been 11 weeks with Lil Nas X’s breakout hit Old Town Road at the number one spot on the Billboard Hot 100, and just last week he released his new EP 7. What makes Lil Nas X so likable? What makes his otherwise crazy lyrics seem completely sane? Amanda Petrusich reports on this and more. [The New Yorker]

When Tumblr banned content containing nudity last year, they inadvertently forced off their website the very artists that made it great in the first place: queer artists. Kelsey Albes talks to artists who used Tumblr back in its prime to explore their identity, build communities, and express themselves on this corner of the internet. [Artsy]

The “sick girl narrative” has permeated our literary and movie genres for the last few decades. These are stories about sick girls whose whole lives seem to be informed by how their sickness affects others and rarely have any characteristics outside of being a good consumer. Lacie Slezak writes about the meaning of these narratives, recent examples, and how women’s health is too often not taken seriously. [The Millions]

If you’ve walked into a bookstore lately, chances are you’ve seen a book cover with a big ole “f*ck” on it. The trend of placing previously off-limits curse words into titles is ramping up, with authors and publishers alike embracing the coarse language. Rachel Bussel examines this trend and talks to a few industry people to find out what the f*ck is going on. [Mel Magazine]

—Nicolas Perez