Outside Reading — The Restraints edition

Her Name Was Shirley by Dr. Reniqua Allen-Lamphere

Writing for Esquire, Dr. Reniqua Allen-Lamphere traces the longterm negative impact the 1956 Life magazine article “The Restraints: Open and Hidden,” part of a series on segregation in the U.S., had on some of its subjects, specifically those who dared to offer the most tepid wish for a more equal society. Because the Black woman who lost her job in retaliation is also the central subject of a famous Gordon Parks photograph taken as part of that journalistic endeavor, Allen-Lamphere astutely explores the way our historical iconography often cast aside the human beings that carry the burden of representing the times in which they live.

Just Because a Number Is Available Doesn’t Mean You Can Have It by Tyler Kepner

On the occasion of the New York Yankees announcing the pending retirement of Paul O’Neill’s number, a two-digit identifier that has unofficially been off limits for several years within that particular American League ball club, Tyler Kepner lists off a slew of players who are similarly shadow honored by their respective teams. That roster includes ol’ Gumby, pictured above. It’s a fun article, perhaps the closest we expect to joy associated with the national pastime for the foreseeable future since the owners are engaged in one of their periodic attempts to demolish all goodwill for the sport in the service of raking a few more nickels into their Scrooge McDuck vaults of riches. This article is published by The New York Times.

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