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MinnPost Picks: on Taylor Swift’s new album, fat liberationism and what happened to Eric Clapton

Our weekly roundup of great stories from around the web, as recommended by MinnPost’s staff and contributing journalists.

Taylor Swift performing during the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Cleveland, Ohio, on October 30
Taylor Swift performing during the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Cleveland, Ohio, on October 30.
REUTERS/Gaelen Morse

Taylor Swift’s Red rerelease proves what fans always knew, Slate

Ashley HackettAs a wannabe-hipster in high school, I always felt like I was “too good” for Taylor Swift’s music, like my life was more original than all the other girls around me who were obsessed with her catchy country-pop tunes. Now, over a decade later, I realize that in my youth I was missing the point that so many others had always understood: Swift has the innate ability to capture the emotional detail of her relationships and her life in such specificity that, incredibly, millions of people can relate. Last week, Swift re-released one of her old albums, “Red,” labeled “Taylor’s Version,” in which she added more depth to the music nearly a decade after its original release and took back her masters in the latest comeback in a public battle over her original work.
—Ashley Hackett, Washington correspondent

The best $15.79 I ever spent: My last terrible diet book, Vox

Author and podcaster Amy Lee Lillard grew up with a family that ridiculed fat women. She also grew up in a society that shamed over-weight people as well. The last diet book she bought was a vegan keto plan that made her head cloudy and left her stomach in knots. Then, an online “body trust” questionnaire opened her mind beyond a weight loss industry “designed to take my money and dignity.” Fat liberationists and body neutrality teachers Lillard discovered on podcasts and social media have guided her to a creative new life.
—Corey Anderson, creative director

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Making Communities Safe, Without the Police, Boston Review

In the Boston Review, two organizers from different cities trace some of the frameworks, from public health to addressing inequity to transformative justice practices, that communities have created to deal with violence and safety.
—Jonathan Stegall, user experience engineer

What happened to Eric Clapton? The Washington Post

Andrew PutzI’ve never been a big Clapton fan — I’ve hated this song with the fire of 1,000 blast furnaces since I first heard it as a nine-year-old — but I am a fan of The Washington Post’s Geoff Edgers, who writes some of the paper’s most compelling and entertaining stuff. As much as anything, this piece offers a good reminder that some of the best stories come out of the simplest questions.
—Andy Putz, editor