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Massachusetts is reexamining its state seal. Tell us: What should it look like?

The current seal shows a Native American man standing before a blue shield, a bow in one hand and a downward pointing arrow in the other. But that could change soon.

Racist symbol or historical reminder? The debate over the Mass. state seal.

A special commission voted unanimously to recommend replacing the state seal and motto, a victory for Indigenous members and activists and a dramatic turning point in a 40-year fight. But now, some worry an important piece of history will be forgotten.


Danish String Quartet stuns at Ozawa Hall

The quartet unleashed a tornado of energy with its performance of Schubert’s String Quartet No. 14, “Death and the Maiden.”


Higher education, riding for a fall

Higher education — the crown jewel of postwar America, its growth powered by the GI Bill, the rush for credentials, the notion that a college degree is a ladder of social mobility, and the glamour of tailgate Saturdays outside the stadium — is in deep trouble, argues a new book. It's worth paying heed.

The ride is just beginning for Horsegirl

The Chicago trio thought they'd break up once they went off to college. Now they have other plans.


Anthony Marra on reading mysteries and historical fiction

It’s been nearly ten years since Anthony Marra’s last novel. Much of that interim was devoted to researching Hollywood, Italy, and World War II in order to write his new novel “Mercury Pictures Presents,” which follows the highs and lows of a young Italian movie producer. He talked with us about what he's been reading lately.


Mohsin Hamid’s new novel imagines white men changing color

In Hamid’s “The Last White Man,” a man named Anders wakes up to darkened pigmentation, followed swiftly by others who turn “a deep undeniable brown.” His country (by which we mean white people), grows zealously protective of a whiter shade of pale.


The Rat’s Jim Harold turned a basement barroom into a bastion of rock ’n’ roll

Harold, who died July 31, presided over a fraying urban watering hole that presented some of the best, most innovative, and least compromising music of its era.


A country girl in the City of Lights

Try to find out virtually anything about Kiki de Montparnasse online — I was looking for "The Acrobat," a painting she made in 1927, late in her heyday as the queen of avant-garde Paris — and you run into a brick wall: a company using her evocative name to sell high-end lingerie. The real Kiki was a varied and remarkable person, a model, artist, writer, singer, muse, and friend, as an uneven but absorbing and insightful new biography of her by Mark Braude reveals.

New England Literary News

An exhibit that combines books and nature, a richly told history of Necco, a community cookbook from Maine

All the news of a bookish bent from around the region.

MFA makes major photography acquisition

The Museum of Fine Arts has acquired 87 prints and the accompanying negatives from Kikuji Kawada’s landmark book about the aftermath of the Hiroshima bombing, “The Map/Chizu.”


In ‘Koshersoul,’ everyone has a seat at the table

Michael W. Twitty’s latest book brings together cultures and traditions through food.


Author readings around Boston Aug. 7-13

All author appearances are virtual and free unless otherwise noted.


Local bestsellers for the week ended July 31

Based on reporting from the independent booksellers of the New England Independent Booksellers Association and IndieBound.

On a pair of Maine islands, the legacy of the Wyeths lives on

Betsy Wyeth spent almost 40 years transforming two desolate islands off Port Clyde into a wonderland of inspiration for her husband, the painter Andrew Wyeth. Now, with the islands acquired by Colby College last fall, their potential for educating and enlightening the public is endless.


Things to do around Boston this weekend and beyond

Music, theater, comedy, museum, and family events, and more, selected by Globe critics and writers.