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The Buzz Cut: It Took a Bull Named ‘Feminist’ to End a Brutal Bullfighting Festival

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Aug 21, 2021

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Image Credit: Paco Paredes/EPA

In The Buzz Cutwe bring you a round-up of all the weird, controversial, and wonderful stories we’ve been reading all week.


The Spanish city of Gijón scrapped a century-old bullfighting competition this week. Animal cruelty concerns aside, two bulls named “Feminist” and “Nigerian” were killed this week. It is common for bulls to die in these competitions. Citizens of Gijón have been calling for the competition’s end due to this cruelty. But it was the names of the slain bulls that were the last nails in the coffin of a problematic tradition in the 133-year-old bullfighting festival. “A city that believes in the equality of women and men, that believes in integration… Cannot allow this sort of thing to happen,” the mayor noted.

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There’s a mystery in the world of literature. Books, like Sally Rooney’s upcoming novel, even before release are going missing with no particular pattern. The book thief’s actions have resisted explanation: “Was the thief simply an impatient reader? A strung-out writer in need of ideas?

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A chef’s journey to fame doubles as a love letter to the kitchen, cooking, and food. There is music to the commercial kitchen — the sound of sizzling, beeps of the oven, blades hitting the board. Between the grime and glamor are unseen but tangible roadblocks to success. “What keeps us in business, then? Love.”

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The Taliban’s rise 20 years later is in different circumstances — people have to protect their digital selves as much as their physical bodies. Afghans are burning evidence, uploading content to secure clouds, and erasing lives online. “Each digital breadcrumb could be a reason to be punished or killed.”

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HBO’s recently-concluded “The White Lotus” was a shining moment for Jennifer Coolidge who plays a wealthy, wounded character. The Hawaiian trip offers a false epiphany, making her glow-up towards the end hollow more than anything. Out of the other privileged white guests, she may even be the show’s “main tragedian.”

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OnlyFan has decided to ban pornography, putting a wrench in the livelihoods of many adult performers who relied on the stability of the platform. The decision reads like a narrative of greed: “OnlyFans is discarding the people who made it a behemoth and hoping to sell the platform those workers popularized… to get rich.”

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The spectacular Flower Garden Banks in the Gulf shelter some of the healthiest coral reefs in the world. The fight to preserve the underwater wonder involved an unlikely alliance of people over a decade. This is a story of cooperation, climate change, and a coral colony that inspires activism.

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British country houses are among the country’s pride treasures, but a recent investigation revealed their darker history of slavery and colonialism. These “idyllic” large estates, which figured in the public life, were intertwined with the colonial project as a whole. The country house has become another British institution reckoning with its problematic legacy.

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Written By Saumya Kalia

Saumya Kalia is Associate Editor at The Swaddle. Her journalism and writing explore issues of social justice, digital sub-cultures, media ecosystem, literature and memory as they cut across socio-cultural periods. You can reach her at @Saumya_Kalia.

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