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[Weekend 2e] From Sweden, they have had their ups and downs, but kept the family firm together for 150
years. Now the Wallenbergs once again consider reinventing their business.
Canada, welcome to "Little Mosque on the
Prairie": A Muslim woman tries to put the fun back into
fundamentalism. Coming out: Religion is creeping into Canada's normally strictly secular politics. A look at
conquerors: who they are and what they want.
Poland's bitter political crisis has reached the streets. Democracy in danger or democracy in action? From New Statesman,
an article on lessons from the Raj for the neo-cons;
a review of Last Rites: the end of the Church of England;
and a review of The 20 British Prime Ministers of the 20th Century.
When Gordon Brown opens
up about books, it speaks volumes about his character. The two-seat parliament farce must end: One million citizens petition Brussels to become the seat of EU parliament.
From Foreign Policy, an interview
with Korea expert Marcus Noland. What to do about
nuke? A TNR symposium. Robert Reich
on how to deal with a madman with nuclear weapons if economic sanctions have little impact on him.
China's New Left calls for a social alternative.
of Chinese Lessons: Five Classmates and the Story of the New China.
Epitaph to unipolarity: A review
of Russian Rubicon: Impending Checkmate of the West.
From Aftenposten, since the conflict with Lebanon, there has been a sense among Western intellectuals that Israel has crossed some moral boundary line.
But western European rhetoric holds Israel to impossible standards of
perfection. Israel is behaving no better or worse than its neighbours in the Middle East.
Check out Qahwa
Sada: a blog-journal by Middle East experts.
A look at how the "theo-con" ambitions of American evangelicals in Israel are
challenging the delicate historical balance of Jerusalem's religious communities.
Every time the US takes on an adversary, its
politicians like to draw comparisons to Britain
on the eve of World War II. But after more
than 60 years, isn’t it time for a new
analogy? Bush confounded by the
wields word more freely as his frustration rises and
his influence ebbs. And the CIA leak case isn't over by a long shot -- and Cheney is still at the center of the story
[Weekend] From The Philippines, another dissident is murdered. Is the government to blame? From Nepal, the country's real chance is to keep the Maoists in the process and create a framework in which their overwhelming interest would become self-transformation into a democratic party of the left. From Australia, by viewing him as an agent of prejudice, the intellectual class misreads John Howard. The New Pacific Wall: The US, Australia, and New Zealand isolate and divide small insular nations. Almost three decades after the fall of the Khmer Rouge, a UN-sponsored tribunal has been set up in Cambodia to prosecute the leaders responsible for genocide. Yet non-Cambodians who share responsibility for the deaths will not be indicted. A review of Confronting Iran: The Failure of American Foreign Policy and the Next Great Crisis in the Middle East; and Hidden Iran: Paradox and Power in the Islamic Republic. Responding to Pyongyang with an eye Toward Tehran: OK, so the axis of evil exists. Let's use it. Does Ban Ki-moon have what it takes to be a mediator between Bush's Washington and the rest of the world? From Open Democracy, an electoral pact between presidential candidates Daniel Ortega and Arnoldo Alemán puts Nicaragua's democracy itself at stake. Ecuador may fall to an anti-American ally of Venezuela's Hugo Chávez, Rafael Correa. Has neo-liberalism failed Mexico? J. Bradford DeLong investigates. From The Wall Street Journal, despite early show of political clout, little has been done to sign up Hispanic immigrants to vote in 2006. A review of The Plan: Big Ideas for America; Foxes in the Henhouse: How the Republicans Stole the South and the Heartland and What the Democrats Must Do to Run 'em Out; Whistling Past Dixie: How Democrats Can Win Without the South; and Scandal: How "Gotcha" Politics is Destroying America. Crash and re-boot: The wrong kind of voting machine could bring chaos to the mid-term elections. Voteless in Alabama: After serving their time, ex-felons should be allowed back into our democracy. At a time when the federal government has failed to do its job, state attorneys general are asserting their authority to protect the public interest. And strange blogfellows: Partisan blogs unite for government transparency
[Oct 13] From Eurozine, in the last fifteen years, "international" has given way to "transnational", suggesting something more fluid, beyond the concept of nation. The newer term may be a threat to the legacy of the international age. From Newropeans, an article on the Global Human Evolutionary Program: Not "just a comma" but a period (and part 2). How large can and should the EU be? A renewed model which combines integration, openness, stability, and the defence of core democratic principles may offer the best answer. Is the Dutch government wrecking Amsterdam's reputation as Europe's "anything goes" destination? Who says Europe hasn’t woken up to radical Islam? Deconstructing the veil: Why Britain is so het up about Muslim women covering their faces. Do veils oppress or liberate? It depends on why you're wearing one. The Veil, a non-Muslim feminist perspective: Imagine asking men to wear it. From The Weekly Standard, the Caucasus is the new Balkans--a forgotten region where an old, hostile empire chafes against less powerful peoples. The ex-communist countries have been an economic success, but risk becoming political failures. A murder, a grudge, deportations and Russia's worrying political direction: Is it time to use the f-word? An excerpt from A Small Corner of Hell: Dispatches from Chechnya by Anna Politkovskaya. From Time, the culture wars come to Chile: Conservatives and liberals square off over personal freedom and personal happiness. What makes a revolutionary? A look at how oil made Venezuela a graveyard of change. A review of Hemispheric Imaginings: The Monroe Doctrine and Narratives of U.S. Empire. From The Washington Monthly, if terrorists attack Congress, America could have no legislative branch. House Republicans are fine with that; and Politics 101: Paul Glastris on the meaning of the midterms; the Establishmentarian: If Democrats win control of the House, Steny Hoyer will have Tom DeLay’s old job. Some things will change, some won’t; and a look at how Abramoff's cronies sold the Medicare drug bill. Five nonprofit organizations, including one run by Grover Norquist, "appear to have perpetrated a fraud" on taxpayers by selling their clout to Abramoff. And the introduction to The Fallacy of Campaign Finance Reform
[Oct 12] From NPQ, Ian Bremmer, author of The J-Curve, on why engagement, not sanctions, is the best way to deal with Iran and North Korea. Fred Kaplan on why John McCain is dead wrong about Bill Clinton and North Korea. That Axis of Evil? It's here now. Thank you, Mr. President. From IHT, an interview with Joseph Stiglitz on managing globalization. More than 650 economists, including five winners of the Nobel Prize for economics, call for an increase in the minimum wage. Do Democrats sound too pessimistic talking about inequality? Nonsense. For the rest of the campaign season, the motto ought to be, "It's fairness, stupid." Harold Meyerson on how the GOP spends its time ignoring real problems while seeking politically beneficial solutions to fake ones. The Foley cover-up is just the tip of the iceberg. If the Democrats succeed in retaking Congress this fall, here are five investigations they should get started on right away. Faced with a disaster at the polls, the GOP has begun fighting back with mounting ferocity -- including a witch hunt against gays. Eccentric preacher K.A. Paul says when he met with Dennis Hastert yesterday, God convinced the speaker to step down over the Foley scandal. But the real question is: Why did the speaker even take the meeting? The Race to Gerrymander: Democrats have a parallel campaign to win the House. It starts in the states. A vote we can believe in: Sometimes, paranoids are right. And sometimes even when paranoids are wrong, it's worth considering what they're worried about. Was I.F. Stone a subversive or a patriot? Scott McLemee examines the evidence (and more on All Government's Lie). From Truthdig, an interview with Isaiah Wilner, author of The Man Who Time Forgot: A Tale of Genius, Betrayal and the Creation of Time Magazine. An interview with Time's editor Rick Stengel on a new course for an old weekly. Who reads Business Week? John Judis wants to know. Newsbooks: Jack Shafer on the triumph of a journalism genre. And how can the MSM maintain they hold themselves to higher standards than the Drudge-driven political blogosphere when they ape its most irresponsible practices?
[Oct 11] From Great Britain, a review of Homo Britannicus: The Incredible Story of Human Life in Britain; and review of Thatcher and Sons by Simon Jenkins. It's l'amour: A survey finds one in five Britons would rather be French. Here's a French presidential primer. The real story of Austria's general election is that the country's democracy has been taken hostage by the extreme right. More on Five Germanys I Have Known by Fritz Stern. Spain's public life has long stifled discussion of the 1936-39 civil war in a "pact of silence". With the end of oblivion comes a slow, painful opening of minds. One of Europe's most famous waves disappeared three years ago, delivering a shock to the international surf community as well as a blow to tourism in the Basque village of Mundaka. But now the waves are rolling again. African immigrants are pouring into Spain -- and stirring up animosity among other European countries. Are Turkey and Europe two trains on a collision course? Joschka Fischer investigates. Nations within the EU are hardening their attitudes towards migrants from those eastern European countries that have recently joined. Meanwhile the western Balkans, though promised entry, have been left to wait. Despite Bosnia's peaceful and orderly elections in early October, the country may again be on the cusp of turmoil. The unrecognised republic of Abkhazia lies at the heart of the Georgia-Russia dispute. George Hewitt, leading scholar of Abkhazian language and identity, considers how the Abkhaz today view their own future. The future looks a lot more diverse: Minority populations are growing rapidly. Ethnic Russians fret over their identity and their power. Drastically differing solutions are being tried as Uzbeks and Kazakhs struggle to stop the advance of the desert once known as the Aral Sea. Melting Arctic forces the Alaskan village of Shishmaref to move. Global sludge ends in tragedy for Ivory Coast. From BBC Magazine, Bob Geldof called it a "victory for millions of Africans". But what has writing off $72 billion worth of debt done for those who live in the poorest countries?; and hosting a diplomatic dinner is full of pitfalls. Get it right and important relationships can be formed. Get it wrong and serious diplomatic incidents can follow. So, what happens when food and drink get mixed up with foreign policy?
[Oct 10] From Open Democracy, Moscow is determined to bully Tbilisi into submission. But Mikheil Saakashvili may have a surprise for Vladimir Putin. Anatol Lieven on how the dispute between Georgia and Russia has all the makings of a tragic conflict. As fascist groups gain ground, xenophobia has taken a turn for the worse in the Russian Federation. That is bad news for the 17 million immigrants among the 50 nationalities who coexist with ethnic Russians. The killing of journalist Anna Politkovskaya is a devastating blow to free media in Russia (and more from Anne Applebaum). From Slate, North Korea tested an atom bomb; now what? Fred Kaplan on four potential scenarios—all bad (and more). Can China rein in North Korea? Joshua Kurlantzick investigates. From The Washington Monthly, the tyrant who came in from the cold: Gadhafi gave up his WMDs not because we scared him, but because we talked to him. A review of The Iron Cage: The Story of the Palestinian Struggle for Statehood. George Packer on why the US should give Tariq Ramadan a visa. From Time, the End of a Revolution: Sex, lies and power games are just the latest symptoms of a Republican Party that has strayed from its ideals. From New York, is the great and powerful Karl Rove about to become a mere mortal?; and Stephen Colbert has America by the ballots. Murdoch's Game: Will he move left in 2008? It's time for progressive editors to stop paying lip service to the idea of gender parity and start making some real changes. A review of Watchdogs of Democracy? The Waning Washington Press Corps and How It Has Failed the Public by Helen Thomas. Michael Kinsley on how editors are molesting readers with their frantic semaphores about the content of articles. A review of Kill the Messenger: How the CIA's Crack-Cocaine Controversy Destroyed Journalist Gary Webb. A review of Journalists Under: Fire The Psychological Hazards of Covering War. New media is great, but the continued killings of old-school investigative reporters prove their work is crucial. And it should happen to you: Ben McGrath on the anxieties of YouTube fame
[Oct 9] From Newsweek, Fareed Zakaria on Iraq's Dark Day of Reckoning. Has Washington found its Iranian Chalabi? Laura Rozen introduces the talented Mr. Fakhravar. A review of Iran Awakening by Shirin Ebadi; Islam and Democracy in Iran; Democracy in Iran: History and the Quest for Liberty; Iran Today; Modern Iran: Roots and Results of Revolution; Confronting Iran: The Failure of American Foreign Policy and the Roots of Mistrust; and The Persian Puzzle: The Conflict Between Iran and America. An interview with Martin Amis on 30 things he has learned about terror. A review of Unsafe at Any Altitude: Failed Terrorism Investigations, Scapegoating 9/11, and the Shocking Truth About Aviation Security Today. Timothy Garton Ash argues that there are signs that the US is moving away from reliance on the military in the "war on terror". Jeffrey Sachs on escaping George Bush’s future. Francis Fukuyama on the American Way of Secrecy: In effect, the Bush administration has been saying, Trust us: you don’t know what we know. More on Bob Woodward's State of Denial. The death of "better than the alternative": Appeasement can work, but not if a country sees every enemy as a potential Hitler. How a useful policy became one of the dirtiest words of the 21st century. Here's a sampling of how the Bush administration’s messaging stacks up with that of the Third Reich on war, national security, and executive power. A review of Hitler, the Allies, and the Jews. Arabs appear to have won a free pass when it comes to denying or minimizing the Holocaust -- but that shouldn't obscure the fact that some took great risks to save Jewish lives. A review of Auschwitz Report by Primo Levi and The Lost: A Search for Six of Six Million. A review of Sacred Causes: Religion and Politics from the European Dictators to Al-Qaeda. And a review of The Rule of Benedict: Pope Benedict XVI and His Battle with the Modern World
[Weekend 2e] Are we so focused on the failures of many African nations, that we neglect to recognize the successes? José Maria Pereira Neves, prime minister of the Republic of Cape Verde thinks so. An article on the Republic of the Maldives as an emerging theater of the Great Game. The history of Thailand suffers by depicting the royalty as an innocent bystander to struggles for power and mentioning it only in passing for benign apolitical leadership. Hong Kong Wrong: What would Cowperthwaite say? Milton Friedman finds out. And true believers and tourists alike entrust their prayers to Jerusalem's Wailing Wall. Now they don't even have to go there -- they can visit on the Internet and send prayers by e-mail
[Weekend] From Brazil, the criminal underworld in Sao Paolo wields a power that rivals the government's. It organizes deadly violence but serves as a welfare state, while the city's wealthy have withdrawn into luxury neighborhoods and feel safe only when they travel by helicopter. Is Sao Paolo a forerunner of the 21st-century metropolis? From France, as in other European countries, smoking in public increasingly has fallen out of favor, as a parliamentary committee approves a proposal to ban smoking in public areas. From Germany, Ralf P. is plagued by sexual fantasies of the kind he would rather not have -- he's pedophile and struggling to resist his own impulses. Berlin's Charité hospital now offers a new program combining counseling and hormone therapy for men in his situation. From Transitions Online, crisis in Hungary: Three takes. From Belgrade Circle Journal, Milosevic was guilty not only because he led a collective criminal enterprise, but also because he demanded that ethnic justice nest in sovereign national law, which he then turned against international law. From Harper's, an article on Luis Posada and a double standard in the War on Terror. From Slate, will we go to war with North Korea? Fred Kaplan investigates; and on the Return of Henry Kissinger: Will we never be free of the malign effect of this little gargoyle? Hooray for Kinky Friedman: It's not whether he wins or loses—it's how he derails the game. It doesn't ad up: Michael Kinsley on McGavick vs. Cantwell and the inanity of political spots. The Foley Follies: What can be learned from the history of Congressional sex scandals? John Dean investigates. The Ethics of Leaking: How to tell whether a leak is worth publishing -- or taking seriously. The Bloomberg Lesson: Jack Shafer on how a fledgling news organization got big while others shrank. A study finds "The Daily Show" is as substantive as network news. And from TNR, an article on defending newsman Borat against slander of dirty Jew
[Oct 6] From Zambia, the technocrat and the populist: Election hiccups in Africa's copperhouse. From Great Britain, the Tories presented a more modern face at their party conference, but David Cameron's newfound passion for the poor is not what it might seem. As North Korea unsettles the region again, the prospects for better relations between Japan and China are still bedevilled by history. Viktor Yanukovych, the prime minister of Ukraine, describes changes that will firmly place his country at the center of the Euro-Atlantic world. An article on the United States and Latin America, a partnership constrained: Hold the marines, send in the OAS. Martin Walker on India's path to greatness. A review of In the Line of Fire: A Memoir by Pervez Musharraf. The president of Pakistan's attempts to publicise his memoirs throw light on the flawed and dishonest processes that the US uses in bringing "terrorists" to justice. Timothy Garton Ash on how censoring ourselves is no way to fight terrorism. Five years and $44 billion later, the US is as vulnerable to biological attack as it was when envelopes containing anthrax spores turned up in government and media mail rooms. A special report on the fortunes and flaws of Project BioShield. The Ghost of the Oval Office: Presidents seem to think that a part of conducting foreign policy is talking to Henry A. Kissinger, even if it goes nowhere. The first chapter from The Way to Win: Taking the White House in 2008 by John F. Harris and Mark Halperin. More on Bob Woodward's State of Denial. And a review of A Fictional History of the United States With Huge Chunks Missing
[Oct 5] From Italy, the formation of a new centre-left political party could pioneer new thinking about realignment across the European Union. From Great Britain, "fraternity" is little more than a PR exercise. Here's a real Big Idea for David Cameron to get his teeth into; and an article on the champions of New Politics: Think tanks dare to go where most politicians won’t. From France, intellectuals are rallying around a philosophy teacher forced into hiding after describing the Prophet Muhammad as a ruthless warlord and mass murderer. From Axess, a special issue on The Swedish Contract. An essay on North Korea and the international politics of famine. A review of Murder in Samarkand: A British ambassador’s controversial defiance of tyranny in the war on terror, and Tamerlane's Children: Dispatches from contemporary Uzbekistan. Anne-Marie Slaughter on the UN's mandate gap. Treasure at the bottom of the sea: The global economy could soon be getting its supply of raw materials from the deep seabed, where copper, zinc, cobalt and gold lie hidden in black smokers and manganese nodules; and until recently the coal industry's days seemed numbered -- especially in Western nations. But now coal is experiencing what may be a lasting boom. One third of the planet will be desert by the year 2100, say climate experts in the most dire warning yet of the effects of global warming. Few societies around the world have gone untouched by the myriad influences of globalization: A look at how different societies are adapting to globalization. Joseph Stiglitz on how to fix the global economy. So, what is the best way to transform a stable but closed state into a stable and open one? Ian Bremmer on why the world is J-curved. From Economic Principals, the most happy nation: What happened to turn Ireland around? What are the lessons for other nations?; is Boston's triumph over New York inevitable, at least in certain other respects? David Warsh thinks perhaps it is. And ever wonder how Chicago got to be the city that it is today?
[Oct 4] From Spain, split personality: Wildly liberal, devoutly Catholic. Old divisions are reopening in the country. From Finland, a research report on "The Looks of a Winner: Beauty, Gender and Electoral Success" pdf. From Transit, a series of articles on the Polish Right: Its rise and fall? It is almost 17 years since the fall of communist East Germany, but still the regime is commemorated in thousands of street names all over the region. Those who fought the dictatorship, on the other hand, are barely remembered. Wine and roses, spies and sanctions, Abkhazia and South Ossetia: Tbilisi's long, intimate and turbulent relationship with Moscow has gone badly wrong. From TNR, an article on Hugo Chávez's new world order. Noam Chomsky on how Latin America is declaring its independence. Lula's Silver Lining: A look at the good news about Brazil's problems. The introduction to Race in Another America: The Significance of Skin Color in Brazil by Edward E. Telles. From Foreign Policy, a look at The World's Most Wanted; and in many Middle Eastern countries, economic and political success hinges on succession. But are the men groomed to follow in their fathers’ footsteps as committed to reform as they seem? Liberals, take note: War with Iran is a genuine possibility, and it would destroy the prospects of progressive foreign policy reform for years to come. Andrew Bacevich on how the Department of Defense's normal tension between civilian and military has degenerated under Rumsfeld. Michiko Kakutani on a portrait of Bush as a victim of of his own certitude. Bob Woodward is a reporter who scoops his own paper, and John Dickerson on Bush vs. Woodward: Only one reputation will survive. Evolving democracy: Changes in the Senate this November may be more reflective of what people really think about the two parties, the state of the nation and President Bush. And check out the "State of the Nation" 2006 election-forecast contest at Boston Review
[Oct 3] From Ghana, an article on culture as a source of prejudice and ethnocentrism. Was Africa ready for independence in the 1960s? Ask former South African prime minister, Pieter W. Botha. We saved Europeans. Why not Africans? Susan Rice, Anthony Lake and Donald Payne want to know. George Packer on what’s keeping UN peacekeepers out of Darfur. From TNR, crude awakening: Welcome to a new era of resource nationalism. A review of Silk Road to Ruin: Is Central Asia the New Middle East? by Ted Rall. If Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah is to stem the Islamist extremism that continues to inspire violence, he must quickly push reforms that will outlast his inevitably short reign. It’s a race against the clock. From Newropeans, an article on rethinking the Arab League. From Der Spiegel, an interview with German Islam expert Bassam Tibi: "Europeans have stopped defending their values". Traitors to the Enlightenment: Victor Davis Hanson on how Europe turns its back on Socrates, Locke, et al. William Pfaff on the European Union's "no vacancy" sign. The European Commission wants to improve young Europeans' grasp of foreign languages. However, EU member states find it difficult to implement concrete measures. In the panicky aftermath of a daring terrorist attack in 68 B.C., the Roman people made decisions that set them on the path to the destruction of their Constitution. One cannot help wondering if history is repeating itself. Niall Ferguson on how Winston Churchill understood what President Bush does not: When it comes to prisoners of war, what goes around comes around. Session after session, congressional battles have us rooting for one side or the other. But it’s not easy to tell who the good (and bad) guys are. Here's a theory by way of He-Man and the Masters of the US Congress. Senator Barack Obama might take the country to a place it’s never been, past the baby boom, beyond race. To many Democrats, and even a lot of Republicans, the prospect is thrilling—but is it for real? Blog-islation: Bloggers can get a bill passed. But will they follow through to see that it's implemented properly? And the Human Blog: Serial charmer and conservative turncoat Arianna Huffington reinvents herself yet again—as self-help guru and queen of connectedness
[Oct 2] From The New York Times Magazine, is Howard Dean willing to destroy the Democratic Party in order to save it? The attacks on Fox News represent a new twist on the Democrats’ complicated dance with the cable news channel (and a graphic on "political herds"). In Ohio, Sherrod Brown is running for the Senate as Thomas Frank’s dream candidate. Can economic populism vanquish culture and terror in a red state? A review of Welcome to the Homeland: A Journey to the Rural Heart of America’s Conservative Revolution; and Whistling Past Dixie: How Democrats Can Win Without the South. The House’s most erratic member, Curt Weldon, may finally hit a wall. If the Republicans want to keep their majorities in the midterm elections, their best chance is to stick with the old, base-driven Bush-Rove electoral strategy. Robert Kuttner on the John McCain charade. Falling on his sword: Colin Powell's most significant moment turned out to be his lowest. The Leaker in Chief: President Bush can't stand leaks, unless they're useful in scoring political points. Politics incubates all manner of gaffe, scandal and humiliation, and then there are those rarified doozies that become classics at I.M. speed. In Washington, there is no higher art form than the non-denial denial, in which politicians try to rebut a storyline without quite denying the specifics. An interview with Warren Beatty on politics. And whatever happened to real men in cinema, and when? At some point, our classic angst-driven characters got all tangled up in their apron strings, and it’s been confusion ever since. A screen history of damaged men. And an article on Borat, Kazakhstan's Mighty Faux
[Weekend 2e] From The Guardian Weekly, take Europe's only self-governing Buddhist republic, Kalmykia, add a contest between two rival world chess champions, and you have the perfect extra-sensory field. A review of Five Germanys I Have Known by Fritz Stern. "Liberal" Europe? Conservatives on the Continent don't necessarily care for free markets. A review of The Beautiful Fall: Lagerfeld, Saint Laurent, and Glorious Excess in 1970s Paris. Adieu France, 'allo land of the free: An interview with Bernard-Henri Lévy. A review of Home Ground: Language for an American Landscape. A review of The United States of Arugula: How We Became a Gourmet Nation (and more). Americans are hams: Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? The country’s motto should be "look at me, look at me!" For all the emotion and sense of crisis that surrounded it, the death and mourning of Princess Diana was one of the most spectacular non-events of our time. At least Paxo won't give them a stuffing: A review of On Royalty. A review of The Progressive Patriot by Billy Bragg (and an interview). A review of A Commonwealth of Thieves: The Improbable Birth of Australia. And a review of A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900 (and more)
[Weekend 2e] Politics,
media and technology: An article on the media’s representation of events surrounding 9/11.
Michelangelo Signorile on why the media should
have 'outed' Foley: Reporters could have relieved the disgraced lawmaker's repressed sexuality by revealing his orientation and hypocrisy years ago.
Attack ads are good for you! David
Mark is in praise of negative campaigning.
Check out The War of the Words: The Story of
the 101st Fighting Keyborders, updated
weekly. I.F. Stone's latter-day critics are attempting to
prove what his contemporary enemies never
could. They should give it up.
250 years and still publishing: An article on The New Hampshire
Gazette, the oldest existing newspaper in the
US. Welcome to Celebrity Magazine: In a world where everyone is
famous, who’s going to do the reporting?
How "Sesame Street" Changed the World: Makers of a new documentary tell
how the kids' show has improved race relations and brought light to developing nations. Politicians are discovering that social networking sites like MySpace
not only open an avenue for communicating with voters under 30 but also attract volunteers and donations. MySpace For Baby Boomers: Monster.com founder Jeff
Taylor thinks seniors should have a network, too. Sotto Vox: Meet the
MySpace for people who don't need people.
The blogosphere's influence is growing, but there's a reason you don't always notice it. Your Second Life is Ready: Residents of one of the Internet's most populous virtual worlds
shop, attend class—even run
businesses. Soon you may do the same. Utopias we can recognize as such are doomed to failure,
forever resigned to fantasy.
Is online universe Second Life such a place, where one experiments harmlessly with
fantasy, or is it an organic necessity, an inevitable outgrowth of
an intolerable present? In an age of microscopic
technologies and sweeping Google Earth panoramas,
Wright, the world’s most successful video-game inventor, has set out
to create a game (or is it the art form?) that will teach us how
to really see. A review
of Law and Internet Cultures. Internet privacy? Google
already knows more about you than the National Security Agency ever
don’t assume for a minute it can keep a secret. YouTube fans--and
And a review
of The Perfect Thing: How the iPod Shuffles Commerce, Culture and
[Weekend 2e] From
In Character, a special
issue on justice, including Seth Lobis (BU):
“Justice” – the world of a word; Jeffrey Rosen
(GWU): Justice Shalt Thou Not Pursue – why the supreme court’s rejection of “justice” is a good thing; Jeremy Stangroom
(TPM): In the Name of Justice? – how punishment helps us think about utilitarianism,
retributivism, and some other philosophies, too; George Scialabba
on a reading list of classics on justice,
from Jesus to Jeffrey Sachs; a look at what the famous, infamous, and obscure have said about
justice, from Plato to Hitler; and a " Daily Show" writer explains
how to make archaic judicial precepts work for you!
From ARPA, a review
of Why Truth Matters. A review
of Philosophical Romanticism. A new issue
of eSkeptic is out. A review
of Phantasmagoria: Spirit Visions, Metaphors, and Media.
From Inside Higher Ed, forget Ask.com:
Read "U.S. Doctorates in the 20th
Century" for a brief history of American
Ph.D.'s. From Free Exchange on Campus, an
interview with Michael
Berube on What's Liberal About the
Liberal Arts? A profile of Lisa
Anderson, dean of Columbia's SIPA. LSE
students react angrily to plans
to open a Tony Blair School for government.
From The Atlantic Monthly, a look back at
an article on Grameen
Bank. Orhan Pamuk forges a literature for the world
from the intimacies of his
Istanbul, and in so doing gives Turkey's experience universal stature--but
divides the country in the process. A grab
bag of postmodern
literary devices helps shape Pamuk’s
career. Jonathan Hari interviews
Salman Rushdie. An interview with philosopher Michail Ryklin on the new degree of fear after Anna Politkovskaya's murder.
From FrontPage, Theodore Dalrymple,
author of Romancing Opiates: Pharmacological Lies and the Addiction
his critics in a debate. Do magic mushrooms make
you mystical? Apparently, yes. "Get you
hands off my balls": An interview with Michael
Baum, on men obsessed with their health.
chapter from Why Size Matters: From Bacteria to Blue Whales.
Can a single female cat and her offspring really
produce 420,000 cats over just seven years? Stodgy science journals going artsy to attract more readers.
And I thank The Scientist for giving
me a legitimate excuse to attract more readers
by writing "goat sex"
[Weekend] From Bookforum, a review of The New Partridge Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English; Peaches and Penumbras: On Allen Ginsberg and “Howl” at fifty; an interview with Michael Tolkin, author of The Return of the Player; and a review of The Female Thing: Dirt. Sex, Envy, Vulnerability by Laura Kipnis. A review of Pin-up Grrrls: Feminism, Sexuality, Popular Culture. A review of Why We Love: The Nature and Chemistry of Romantic Love. A review of Getting Under the Skin: Body and Media Theory. Sex on film through the ages bring us to the question -- what makes movie sex dirty? A review of Dietrich's Ghosts: The Sublime and the Beautiful in Third Reich Film. An excerpt from The Green and the Brown: A History of Conservation in Nazi Germany. From The Jerusalem Post, Nobel Prize winner Roger Kornberg is an insider. Although not (yet) a citizen of the Jewish state, he has such strong ties that he could easily be called an "honorary Israeli". Peace Prize Campaign '06! Norway helps those who help themselves. Bangladeshi economist and founder of Grameen Bank Muhammad Yunus is awarded the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize (and an interview). An excerpt from Gandhi's Philosophy and the Quest for Harmony. From The Economist, the joy of giving: A look at how donating to charity rewards the brain. A review of The Psychology of Science and the Origins of the Scientific Mind. Is there a sixth sense? Some experts claim that hunches might actually foretell the future. Others aren't so sure. A review of In Search of Memory. Their object all sublime: An article on a vogue for shaming wrongdoers. A review of Foucault 2.0: Beyond Power and Knowledge. A review of Technology Matters: Questions to Live With. Math envy: A review of 23 Problems in Systems Neuroscience. A review of Arthur Cayley: Mathematician Laureate of the Victorian Age; and James Joseph Sylvester: Jewish Mathematician in a Victorian World. Rev. Robert Schlageter barrels into the dorm in his black friar's robes cinched with rope: "You getting your rooms blessed, you little pagans?" And an op-ed on why it is time for colleges to develop accurate measures of student achievement, and of the value institutions of higher education provide
[Oct 13] From The New Criterion (registration required, and make sure you check out the "print version"), a review of Thomas Paine: Enlightenment, Revolution, and the Birth of Modern Nations; an essay on Winston Churchill as historian; and a review of John Carey’s What Good Are The Arts? From The Nation, a review of Visual Shock: A History of Art Controversies in American Culture by Michael Kammen and Good and Plenty: The Creative Successes of American Arts Funding by Tyler Cowen. The literature of national identity: More and more on Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk. An interview with Mario Vargas Llosa. From Forward, scholars fume over canceled events; and a "Lobby" prof asks: Can we talk? The latest mental health crisis on college campuses? Depressed faculty. From Nerve, here's some sex advice from PhD students. From Salon, the flying spaghetti monster: An interview with Richard Dawkins on The God Delusion. Darwin and Spirituality: Ronald Dworkin on Intelligent Design. John Searle reviews Seeing Red: A Study in Consciousness by Nicholas Humphrey. Italian sociologist Maurizio Montalbini hopes to spend up to three years hunkered in a cave to better understand the body's natural cycles. From American Scientist, evidence that psychology, like biology, is conserved between human and nonhuman species augurs a shake-up for science and society; a review of The First Human: The Race to Discover Our Earliest Ancestors; in and out of the water, transitional forms from the fossil record illuminate the nuts and bolts of evolution; and a review of Genes in Conflict: The Biology of Selfish Elements. Just like us: If we're so alike, why aren't chimps classed as human, too? What is so upsetting to some people about the closeness between animal and human intelligence and emotions? Frans de Waal wants to know. A review of The Singing Neanderthals: The Origins of Music, Language, Mind, and Body. Early humans followed the coast: Learning how to live off the sea may have played a key role in the expansion of early humans around the globe. And imagine Earth without people: Would the footprint of humanity ever fade away completely, or have we so altered the Earth that even a million years from now a visitor would know that an industrial society once ruled the planet?
[Oct 12] From TNR, Steven Pinker reviews George Lakoff's Whose Freedom? The Battle Over America's Most Important Idea, and a response by Lakoff (scroll down). The introduction to The Canon of American Legal Thought. In 1966, the TLS devoted three issues to "New Ways in History". Keith Thomas looks at history's expanding borders. A review of Bursting the Limits of Time: The Reconstruction of Geohistory in the Age of Revolution. A review of The Making and Unmaking of Empires: Britain, India, and America, c. 1750 - 1783. A review of Gordon Wood's Revolutionary Characters: What Made the Founders Different. A review of Black Flag Over Dixie: Racial Atrocities and Reprisals in the Civil War. From Sign and Sight, two faces of Arab intellectuals: Khalid al-Maaly points to a surprising duplicity among the Arab intelligentsia. Turkish writer Orhan Pamuk is named winner of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Literature. The Nobel Prize in literature has come to symbolize greatness in life, as in art -- but Günter Grass isn't the only laureate with a questionable past. What's a reclusive novelist doing at a New Mexico scientific institute? Drinking tea and getting inspiration from mavericks. Video games and MySpace distractions aside, losing yourself in a good book remains one of life's great pleasures. But if you treasure life on a human scale, how you choose to buy your book is almost as important as the book you buy. Alex beam on the delicate art of how not to read a book. As a writer Susan Sontag located herself behind her subject. After her death it is her personality that is memorialised. Angela McRobbie deciphers this use of a great intellectual's legacy. From The Chronicle, the politics on our plates: A review of Heat: An Amateur's Adventures as Kitchen Slave, Line Cook, Pasta-Maker, and Apprentice to a Dante-Quoting Butcher in Tuscany; Meals to Come: A History of the Future of Food; The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals; The Way We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter; and What to Eat. A review of Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer. And a review of Caribbean Rum: A Social and Economic History
[Oct 11] From PUP, the first chapter from On Physics and Philosophy. String theory: Is it science's ultimate dead end? Oh, for the simple days of the Big Bang: Since a Nobel-winning discovery, cosmology has gotten more complicated. From The Scientist, five things not to forget when forecasting: Forecast models can become complex, but the principles for gathering and vetting data for good predictions should remain basic. Sound Science or Sound Bite? Michael Bugeja explores the conflict between journalism and science. From The Chronicle of Higher Education, an article on The Propaganda of Numbers: When it comes to educational statistics, spin is in and due diligence is crucial. A review of The Artist and the Mathematician: The Story of Nicolas Bourbaki, the Genius Mathematician Who Never Existed. From Improbable Research, here's a look at the 2006 Ig Nobel Prize Winners. Economics not so Ig Nobel: Say what you will about the Ig Nobels, but what they tend to have in common is that they recognise work that, however bizarre, seems to have a most immediate and practical benefit for ordinary folk. Since the first Nobel Prize in 1901, the Swedish Academy has never been shy about awarding writers whose body of work was little-known or outright obscure to most readers. The Novel, 2.0: Will the Internet change fiction as we know it? George Plimpton is dead, alas, but the magazine he founded, the Paris Review, is alive and well. That which simmers is not to be dissed: Posters on the subway in Washington that seem to say reading Plato is intellectually superior to reading racy romance novels have caused controversy. From The New York Sun, forget Britney: These fan clubs -- the Foucault Society, the Nietzsche Circle, and the Luce Irigaray Circle -- are for deep thinkers. Two major American Jewish organizations helped block Tony Judt from speaking at a Polish consulate, saying the academic was too critical of Israel and American Jewry. From Lyndon LaRouche's Executive Intelligence Review, Lynne Cheney and Wall Street operative John Train are attempting to impose a gestapo over American education that would wipe out resistance; and a look at John Train's press sewer: Is Goebbels on your campus? And a review of Binge: Campus Life in an Age of Disconnection and Excess
[Oct 10] Jurgen Habermas on Religion in the Public Square pdf. More on The God Delusion. A review of Kierkegaard and Socrates: A Study in Philosophy and Faith. A review of a new translation of Cicero's On Academic Scepticism. A review of Linguistic Turns in Modern Philosophy. More on Michael Frayn's The Human Touch. Rawlsian neuroscience? A brain region that curbs our natural self interest has been identified. The studies could explain how we control fairness in our society. Hannah Arendt was a philosopher of the exceptional. But as the centennial of her birth approaches, she can seem more like a philosopher of the typical. From The New Yorker, was Thomas Paine too much of a freethinker? A review of Thomas Paine: Enlightenment, Revolution, and the Birth of Modern Nations. A review of The American State Constitutional Tradition. From Inside Higher Ed, not so Godless after all: It turns out though that there are plenty of believers on college faculties; back-to-school day came again, and with it an urgent question: Why does it take the memory of a Hello Kitty lunchbox to make you realize that life is not a drill?; and are some student bodies too homogenous? Are students from some groups too alike in their college choices? Is it racist to consider these questions? No dates, no dancing: Why Pakistan's university students are embracing the fundamentalist life. A Collision of Prose and Politics: A prominent professor's attack on a best-selling memoir sparks debate among Iranian scholars in the US. From The Village Voice, a review of Up Is Up But So Is Down: New York's Downtown Literary Scene, 1974–1992; and From Counterculture to Cyberculture: Stewart Brand, the Whole Earth Network, and the Rise of Digital Utopianism. From Wired, the desktop is dead. Welcome to the Internet cloud, where massive facilities across the globe will store all the data you'll ever use. George Gilder on the dawning of the petabyte age. And Columbia's Edmund Phelps wins the Nobel Prize for Economics, a look at why his work matters, and a series of his articles on The Wall Street Journal
[Oct 9] From CUP, an excerpt from Delusions of Intelligence Enigma, Ultra, and the End of Secure Ciphers; an excerpt from Early Cold War Spies: The Espionage Trials that Shaped American Politics; and an excerpt from The Primacy of Politics: Social Democracy and the Making of Europe's Twentieth Century. A review of Americans Without Law: The Racial Boundaries of Citizenship; a review of Trial By Jury: The Seventh Amendment and Anglo-American Special Juries; and a review of Law and Class in America: Trends Since the Cold War. A review of Over Here: How the G. I. Bill Transformed the American Dream. A review of Academic Freedom After September 11. Yes, colleges are dominated by left-wing profs. No, they probably won't brainwash your kids. Hope at Hamilton College: An article on the new Alexander Hamilton Center for the Study of Western Civilization. Michael Collins uses a campus murder mystery to send up the scheming at an insular liberal arts college in the Midwest. People who love books are constantly running out of room to store them. They may even be in mortal danger. Alberto Manguel on the library as space. The legend of Scheherazade has intrigued and delighted for generations. In a new piece entitled "Blood Relations", Salman Rushdie interprets her story for a new audience — and raises some dark and disquieting questions. More and more on The Shakespeare Wars: Clashing Scholars, Public Fiascoes, Palace Coups by Ron Rosenbaum. The house guest from hell: A review of The Friendship: Wordsworth and Coleridge (and more). Into the lists: Can a novelist be both very young and very good? Feel like the fiction you've been reading has been missing something -- aliens perhaps, or the occasional occult incursion of rabbits? A new literary movement, based in Northampton, has just the thing for you. And giving the heave-ho in an online Who’s Who: Somewhere in the hierarchy of personal celebrity sits the Wikipedia entry
[Weekend 2e] From Cambridge University Press, an excerpt from Natural Law Liberalism; an excerpt from The Limits of Leviathan: Contract Theory and the Enforcement of International Law; an excerpt from The UN International Criminal Tribunals The Former Yugoslavia, Rwanda and Sierra Leone; an excerpt from Principles of Constitutional Design; and an excerpt from The Least Examined Branch: The Role of Legislatures in the Constitutional State. From The Nation, America, through a glass darkly: A review of Richard Hofstadter: An Intellectual Biography. And more on What’s Liberal About the Liberal Arts?: Classroom Politics and “Bias” in Higher Education
[Weekend] From Time Out, an interview with Slavoj Zizek on his latest intellectual Molotov cocktail, "The Pervert's Guide to Cinema". A review of The Future of Hegel: Plasticity, Temporality and Dialectic. Why was the 20th Century the bloodiest of all? A review of Niall Ferguson's The War of the World. Cynthia Ozick reviews The Wicked Son: Anti-Semitism, Self-Hatred, and the Jews by David Mamet. An interview with Karen Armstrong on Muhammad: Prophet for Our Time, and a review of The Great Transformation. From Discover, Michael Griffin is gearing NASA up to build a moon base. Is he paving the way to Mars or jeopardizing the future of American space exploration? Magnetic-pole reversals have happened in the past. Is the next one due soon? The Amateur's Revenge: Posing as a physicist—and getting away with it. Understanding the universe and the potential and actual distribution of life within it will illuminate our own existence here on Earth and help us to comprehend our species, our society, and our individual lives. That understanding is within our reach now, for the first time. Unity and diversity: New insights into the origin of species suggest that biologists disagree less than they thought they did. The fact has to be faced: temperatures are within a degree of their highest levels in a million years, and a new geological era has begun. Whatever we do, a new planet is coming into existence, a planet different from the one we thought we inhabited. That mysterious, feared affliction known as the freshman 15 is entirely misunderstood — menacing in reputation, but in reality? Marvelous. No Child Left Behind, intended to right the injustices suffered by poor and minority children, has done the opposite. Google unveils a Web site dedicated to literacy, pulling together its books, video, mapping and blogging services to help teachers and educational organizations share reading resources. And writing right: Many students find grammar difficult. Jonathan Gabay delves into the intricacies
[Oct 6] From Ctheory, Warren Magnusson (Victoria): The City of God and the Global City. Form German Law Journal, more on Yochai Benkler's The Wealth of Networks: How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom. From Forward, an article on Hannah Arendt, 100 years later; and what is the difference between saying that "so-and-so is a Jew" and that "so-and-so is Jewish?" Transcending the dangerous limits of manufactured identity: A review of Amartya Sen's Identity and Violence and Kwame Anthony Appiah's Cosmopolitanism. An interview with Dorothy Fall, author of Bernard Fall: Memories of a Soldier-Scholar. From The Independent, how café culture influenced writers and artists: Ibsen, Satre and Dali worked best with a glass in front of them. A new book explores the contribution made by café culture to their greatest creations. From New Statesman, contemporary art has never been more fashionable, yet all the money and hype belie something of an identity crisis – not surprising when Damien Hirst’s inane spot paintings sell for hundreds of thousands and rich businessmen increasingly call the shots; and a look at why high prices do not inspire great art. Form The University of Chicago Chronicle, an interview with Cass Sunstein. The University of London has lost one of its most prestigious member institutions with the announcement that Imperial College is to become independent. And Iraq's school and university system is in danger of collapse in large areas of the country as pupils and teachers take flight in the face of threats of violence
[Oct 5] H. Lee Cheek, Jr. (BPC): Recovering Moses: The Contribution of Eric Voegelin and Contemporary Political Science pdf. An excerpt from When They Severed Earth from Sky: How the Human Mind Shapes Myth. A review of C. D. Broad's Ontology of Mind. A review of The Metaphysics of Hyperspace. From The Wilson Quarterly, are video games evil?: Violent video games teach our kids to point and shoot, say their critics. The truth may be every bit as frightening to members of a generation raised to believe they’re thinking outside the box; Us & Them: A series of essays on immigrants in America; and the 20th century taught us that repressed desires are the source of human unhappiness. Now, with more possibilities for pleasure and fewer rules and constraints than ever before, the happy few will be those able to exercise self-control. DNA takes a stand: How the genetic code became a revolutionary tool for law enforcement. God as Logos, Allah as Will: An interview with Georgetown's James Schall on Benedict XVI's Regensburg address. The celebrated love-life of Marie-Antoinette did not spark the French revolution, according to a new book on scandalous pamphleteers. From Inside Higher Ed, a graduate student has discovered a previously unknown poem by Robert Frost. Scott McLemee takes a passing glimpse. The old campus quarrel, fought to a standstill: A review of What’s Liberal About the Liberal Arts? Classroom Politics and "Bias" in Higher Education by Michael Bérubé. Before getting into what’s wrong with Malcolm Gladwell, it helps to talk about what’s been right about Malcolm Gladwell. Business management badly needs its William of Occam: "No more things should be presumed to exist than absolutely necessary". The first chapter from Louis Bachelier's Theory of Speculation: The Origins of Modern Finance. Would you like a belt with those suspenders?: A reading of the annual report of the Bank for International Settlements. And a review of Fortune's Formula: The Untold Story of the Scientific Betting System that Beat the Casinos and Wall Street
[Oct 4] Erik Olin Wright (Wisconsin): Envisioning Real Utopias. Eyal Zamir and Barak Medina (HUJ): Incorporating Moral Constraints into Economic Analysis. Nine Different Ways to Make a Living: A review of Yochai Benkler's The Wealth of Networks; and more on The Economics of Attention: Style and Substance in the Age of Information. A review of The Era of Choice: The Ability to Choose and Its Transformation of Contemporary Life. A review of Happiness: A History by Darrin M. McMahon. More on Alain de Botton's The Architecture of Happiness. A review of The Philosophy of Foucault. A review of Lacan: The Silent Partners, edited by Slavoj Zizek. From PUP, the first chapter from Darwin Loves You: Natural Selection and the Re-enchantment of the World; and the first chapter from Primates and Philosophers: How Morality Evolved by Frans de Waal. An excerpt from Bodies, Commodities & Biotechnologies: Death. Mourning & Scientific Desire in the Realm of Human Organ Transfer. From Discover, here are 20 things you didn't know about the Nobel Prizes. From The New York Sun, Michael Shermer on Six Numbers in Search of a Theory. From Physics Today, an article on theory in particle physics: Theological speculation versus practical knowledge. From The Scientist, is President Bush really science's worst-ever enemy? Or are we being unreasonably rough on his record? From The Guardian, an interview with Ruth Simmons, president of Brown University. A review of Professors' Guide to Getting Good Grades in College. An interview with Jeremy Iversen, author of High School Confidential: Secrets of an Undercover Student. And from Writ, more on the "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" First Amendment case of a public high school student. From The Mises Institute, Lew Rockwell wants to legalize drunk driving. And a generation ago, the death of a pet prompted heartbreak, but the burial may have been a simple backyard affair. Pet funerals these days are going upscale
[Oct 3] A new issue of International Political Theory Beacon is out. A review of Kwame Anthony Appiah's The Ethics of Identity. A review of Foucault 2.0: Beyond Power and Knowledge. More on The Human Touch: Our Part in the Creation of a Universe by Michael Frayn. A review of History, Theory, Text: Historians and the Linguistic Turn. A new paper explores the deep theoretical biases that make Christians difficult for anthropologists to study. A review of God's War: A New History of the Crusades. A review of Malory: The Knight Who Became King Arthur's Chronicler. A review of A Troublesome Commerce: The Transformation of the Interstate Slave Trade. A review of After Suez; Suez 1956; and Ends of British Imperialism. Rashid Khalidi on how the challenges of writing Palestinian history reflect the larger challenges facing the Palestinians' quest for statehood. From The Weekly Standard, the Anti-Federalist Society: Law school Lefties have all the Right stuff. Harvard is preparing to launch a spring-semester study-abroad program at the University of Havana, despite strict federal regulations. Why student media matters: As the mainstream media -- and even alternative media -- become more corporate and consolidated, hundreds of campus publications are reporting the truth about student life and training news leaders of the future. From The New Yorker, revisiting Kit Carson—the man, the myth, and the dime-novel hero: A review of Blood and Thunder: An Epic of the American West. From NYRB, a review of books on Google. An interview with Google CEO Eric Schmidt. James Surowiecki on why Hewlett-Packard needed to plug leaks from its board of directors. Will computers really decentralize the economy? That's one speedy laptop: A computer powered by a jet engine? It's closer than you think. Cheating to the beat: Digital music technology can give athletes an unfair edge. When George Orwell envisaged the Ministry of Truth, he couldn't have foreseen that later even our family photo albums couldn't be trusted for an honest depiction of ourselves. A history of the twentieth century in mugshots: A review of Under Arrest. And city streets were originally built for human beings, not machines. The humans only lost out when car companies got greedy in the early part of the last century. Time for a comeback?
[Oct 2] A new issue of the Post-Autistic Economics Review is out, including Deirdre McCloskey (UIC): A Solution to the Alleged Inconsistency in the Neoclassical Theory of Markets: Reply to Guerrien's Reply; and an essay on Keynes without Debt. From Economic Principals, a review of The "Vanity of the Philosopher:" from Equality to Hierarchy in Post-Classical Economics; a review of An Engine, Not a Camera: How Financial Models Shape Markets; a review of Fischer Black and the Revolutionary Idea of Finance; an essay on supply-side economics at 25; and what has been the most single exciting province of applied economics these last dozen years? Auction engineering, probably. From The Washington Times, a review of Gary Nash's The Unknown American Revolution: The Unruly Birth of Democracy and the Struggle to Create America. A review of 31 Days: The Crisis That Gave Us the Government We Have Today. A review of Nixon in China: The Week That Changed the World By Margaret MacMillan. From Popular Mechanics, a look at 10 Radically Innovative College Programs. Jeffrey Hart on how to get a college education: It can be done, even in the Ivy League, if you keep your eye on the goal of education. Penn president Amy Gutmann on why early admissions aren't the problem. 6 Degrees of Harvard: Went there. Wish you did. Heard of it. Prize it. Scorn it. Here’s your magazine. A review of College Girls: Bluestockings, Sex Kittens, and Coeds, Then and Now. Portrait of the artist as a dirty old man: A new study of Norman Rockwell finds sexual innuendo lurking amid his classic images of innocence. And what happened to the neighborhood babysitter?
[Weekend 2e] A review of The Architecture of Happiness by Alain de Botton. Forget 'isms' — except eclecticism: Those discrete movements you studied in art history? They're long gone. Today, it's all about diversity — and quality, of course. If all languages are equal, why does it matter when one of them dies? Walter Benn Michaels wants to know. From Sunday Herald, if absurdity is silly, how come it has inspired some of the world’s greatest works of genius, from Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis, to Matt Groening’s Homer Simpson? A review of The Things That Matter: What Seven Classic Novels Have to Say about the Stages of Life. An interview with Martin Amis on families, fame and the really big issue - women. What's so funny about the Nobel Prize for Literature? Critics of the decreasingly influential award charge that political agendas trump great writing, but maybe it's always been thus. How to win a Nobel Prize: Even Australian pig-wrestlers have a shot, if they work hard and are exposed to good schools. What do Nobel Laureates do with all that prize money? An informal survey of winners in Physiology or Medicine reveals generosity and a sense of fun. From Seed, how will the open access movement affect global science? And John Horgan reviews The Trouble With Physics by Lee Smolin