Daniel Huber (IAI) and Lorenzo Kamel (Bologna): Arab Spring: The Role of the Peripheries. Ariel Ahram (Virginia Tech): War-Making, State-Making, and Non-State Power in Iraq. James M. Dorsey (NTU): How Qatar is its Own Worst Enemy. Understanding the Gulf states: F. Gregory Gause on why the monarchies of the Persian Gulf fall out and get back together — and why it matters for the region and the world. Is the House of Saud teetering on the edge of collapse? A top Iranian figure thinks that the Saudi government is about to crack. A nuclear Iran will not lead to a nuclear Middle East, no matter what the Gulf states say. In an interview, Obama ties his legacy to a pact with Tehran, argues ISIS is not winning, warns Saudi Arabia not to pursue a nuclear-weapons program, and anguishes about Israel. Jeffrey Sachs on the case for peace with Iran. Split personality: Mona Christophersen on Hezbollah’s role in the New Middle East. Mark Mazzetti and Helene Cooper on how the sale of U.S. arms fuels the wars of Arab states. The plight of the Middle East’s Christians: Ancient communities in Syria and Iraq are in mortal peril — can the West find a way to preserve the Christian presence in the Middle East and stave off a “clash of civilizations”? Robert Kaplan on why it’s time to bring imperialism back to the Middle East: Empire may have fallen out of fashion, but history shows that the only other option is the kind of chaos we see today. Max Fisher on 40 maps that explain the Middle East.

Roger Berkowitz (Bard): The Flight From Law: Title IX and The Fight For Prophylactic Justice. Jeroen Dewulf (UC-Berkeley): Black Brotherhoods in North America: Afro-Iberian and West-Central African Influences. From the Journal of Performance Magic, Laura C. Bruns (Bradley) and Joseph P. Zompetti (Illinois State): The Rhetorical Goddess: A Feminist Perspective on Women in Magic; Grace Alexandra Williams (BSA): Vanishing in Plain Sight; and Lynne Kelly (LaTrobe): Feminine Magic. The slippery slope of industry self-regulation: Joseph Heath reviews Constructing Private Governance: The Rise and Evolution of Forest, Coffee and Fisheries Certification by Graeme Auld and Coffee by Gavin Fridell. Nicole Pasulka interviews Susan Stryker, the academic behind the media’s “transgender tipping point”. David Dayen on how to make the Trans-Pacific Partnership work for workers. Conspiracy theorists will truly believe anything, says science. Mark Ames on Seymour Hersh and the dangers of corporate muckraking. Dean Baker on how the deficit falls by $20 trillion and NPR doesn’t even notice. What is it that makes someone wise, or one person wiser than another? Stephen R. Grimm on wisdom. The case of the amazing gay-marriage data: Jesse Singal on how a graduate student reluctantly uncovered a huge scientific fraud. “Looking at ‘Pelosiville’ and ‘Hastertland’, it is not difficult to see why American politics has shifted to the Right.

From NYRB, The rocky road to taking it easy: Jeff Madrick reviews Falling Short: The Coming Retirement Crisis and What to Do About It by Charles D. Ellis, Alicia H. Munnell, and Andrew D. Eschtruth; Social Security Works! Why Social Security Isn’t Going Broke and How Expanding It Will Help Us All by Nancy J. Altman and Eric R. Kingson; and Steering Clear: How to Avoid a Debt Crisis and Secure Our Economic Future by Peter G. Peterson. Teresa Ghilarducci on America’s unequal retirement: One of the cruelest manifestations of widening inequality happens in life's final quarter. Americans aren’t saving enough for retirement, but one change could help. From Vox, a look at how raising Social Security's retirement age is a disaster for the poor; and how raising the Social Security retirement age really does hurt the poor the most. Helaine Olen on the semi-retirement myth: Don’t buy the tales of meaningful work into your 70s — your retirement is inevitable and bleaker than the last generation’s. Retirement crisis: Kelley Holland on how the great 401(k) experiment has failed for many Americans. The companies that manage trillions in retirement savings like to keep their disputes behind closed doors, but online wealth management startups entering the market have brought with them a tech industry tradition: smack-talking blog posts. Is Wall Street robbing New York’s pension funds? Bryce Covert on how Wall Street siphons billions from retirees — and gets away with it. These rules could stop financial advisors from siphoning billions from Americans’ retirement every year.

From The Chronicle, what accounts for the remarkable stability of university rankings? John Quiggin on rank delusions. Beyond college rankings: Jonathan Rothwell and Siddharth Kulkarni on a value-added approach to assessing two- and four-year schools. Rebecca Mead on how Cooper Union’s ideal of free education seems to be foundering amid the financial pressures and preoccupations of Manhattan today. For-profit Corinthian Colleges shuts down dozens of campuses, leaving thousands of students without a school. Jonathan Chait on how Republicans learned to love colleges. Daniel Little on self-selection and “liberal” professions. Law schools are in a death spiral — maybe now they’ll finally change. Burdened with debt, law school graduates struggle in job market. Someone calculated how many adjunct professors are on public assistance, and the number is startling. Tenured professor Susan Boynton on why hiring adjuncts is wrong. Evan Kindley reviews Versions of Academic Freedom: From Professionalism to Revolution by Stanley Fish. Prof, no one is reading you: An average academic journal article is read in its entirety by about 10 people — to shape policy, professors should start penning commentaries in popular media. Chris Rasmussen reviews The End of College: Creating the Future of Learning and the University of Everywhere by Kevin Carey. Thorstein Veblen’s The Higher Learning in America is back in a new edition; Scott McLemee revisits a scathing classic.

Danijela Prosic-Santovac (Novi Sad): Happily Ever After: (De)Constructing Cultural Values across Centuries. Rob Koons (Texas): Political Representation, Human Nature, and the Problem of Scale. Jeroen J. J. Van den Bosch (Adam Mickiewicz): Mapping Political Regime Typologies. Timothy M. Ravich (UCF): Aeropolitics and Open Skies. Cubans really don’t like Marco Rubio. Why Hillary Clinton needs Elizabeth Warren — and don’t run, Elizabeth! Escape or die: When a cargo ship was captured by Somali pirates, its crew faced one desperate choice after another. What can’t you say? Stephen Fry, Slavoj Zizek, Elif Shafak and more say the unsayable. This guy from Baltimore is raising a Christian army to fight ISIS — what could go wrong? Jenna Mclaughlin on the self-proclaimed freedom-fighter Matthew VanDyke. Fact, fiction, and social science replication: A recent scandal will lead to calls for greater transparency in political science data — but that’s been an ongoing trend. The atlas the ocean has been waiting: For all of our GPS units, online mapping services, satellites, and general mastery over terra firma, it is easy to forget that much of the surface of our small planet is as unexplored today as it was at the dawn of civilization. Can you just say it? Say that Google Plus is not dead, please. Don’t search for “purpose”: Jonathan Malesic on the big lie behind a Venn diagram meme. This girl dropped some feminist truth in her yearbook quote.

Bernie Sanders gave a barnburner speech to kick off his 2016 campaign (and more). At the University in the 1960s, Bernie Sanders, AB’64, set out on a path that led to the Senate, and an unlikely place at the center (2014). A look at the 25 best things we learned from Bernie Sanders’ book, Outsider in the House. John Harwood interviews Bernie Sanders, who calls for nothing less than a “political revolution”. Bernie Sanders kicks off 2016 run with some harsh words about rich people (and more). Sorry, Bernie Sanders — deodorant isn’t starving America’s children (and a response). Matt Bruenig on how Bernie Sanders’ deodorant argument is one of the most substantive of the campaign so far (and more). Bernie Sanders wants free tuition at four-year public colleges — here’s why it won’t work. Dara Lind on why Bernie Sanders doesn't talk about race. This presidential candidate wants everyone to be able to take a vacation. America’s views align surprisingly well with those of “socialist” Bernie Sanders — so what does that make us? Bernie Sanders has big ideas, and they deserve our attention. Will Bernie Sanders get a fair shake? Bernie Sanders is a totally legitimate presidential candidate — and it's time the press started treating him like one. Patrick Howell O'Neill on the Bernie Sanders election that proves he can beat the odds. Bernie Sanders will never, ever be Hillary Clinton’s VP — and that’s a good thing. Josh Marshall on the official opposition: “That’s a lot of Bernie Sanders!” Bernie Sanders' 1987 spoken word folk album could make choosing an official 2016 tune easy. How Bernie Sanders shaped the Northeast punk scene. Bernie Sanders’ 404 page is the distilled essence of Bernie Sanders.

James E. Fleming (BU): Is it Time to Rewrite the Constitution? Fidelity to Our Imperfect Constitution; and Fidelity to Our Living Constitution. From constitutional reform to fortified democracy: Thorvaldur Gylfason on four alleged flaws of the US constitution. Paul Schiff Berman (George Washington): Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the Interaction of Legal Systems. Is John Roberts drifting Left? Brianne J. Gorod wonders. Oliver Roeder on how to read the mind of a Supreme Court justice. Adam Lamparello (Indiana Tech): City of Los Angeles v. Patel: The Upcoming Supreme Court Case No One is Talking About. Views of Supreme Court are little changed as major rulings loom. Jeffrey Toobin on the threat to Obama from the courts. From Griswold v. Connecticut to gay marriage: Jill Lepore on reproduction, marriage, and the Constitution. Will Republicans suffer politically if the Supreme Court strikes down ObamaCare? Don't count on it. Who is responsible for the stealth assault on civil rights? Samuel R. Bagenstos reviews No Day in Court: Access to Justice and the Politics of Judicial Retrenchment by Sarah Staszak. Tierney Sneed on 5 points on how “one person, one vote” is suddenly in jeopardy. Why do we still tolerate the Supreme Court? Mark Joseph Stern reviews Injustices: The Supreme Court's History of Comforting the Comfortable and Afflicting the Afflicted by Ian Millhiser.

Dorothy Kidd (USF): Social Justice Media: The Case of Occupy. Kiyoung Kim (Chosun): Public Policy and Governance: Some Thoughts on Its Elements. James Bessen (BU): The Anti-Innovators: How Special Interests Undermine Entrepreneurship. Claus C. Portner (Seattle): Sex-Selective Abortions, Fertility, and Birth Spacing. J.J. Goldberg on what Israel’s Chief of Staff is worried about — no, it’s not Iran. “What about Sepp Blatter?” and other questions about the FIFA case (and more and more). Erik Voeten on how Watergate helps explain how the U.S. can prosecute FIFA officials. Philip Bump on how the U.S. can arrest FIFA officials in Switzerland, explained. Christopher Ingraham on the shocking human toll of FIFA’s corruption (and more). FIFA frantically announces 2015 Summer World Cup in United States. Annie Lowrey on protesting student debt with Astra Taylor. Did this acclaimed sociologist drive the getaway car in a murder plot? Steven Lubet on the questionable ethics of Alice Goffman’s On the Run (and more and more). Scott Keyes on ten outrageous ideas Rick Santorum actually believes. Emily Greenhouse on the not-so-feminist history of Wonder Woman: The superheroine’s polygamous creator exploited the love and labor of the women who were his inspiration. “Bill Gates is an optimist”: Ezra Klein on the most predictable disaster in the history of the human race. Mike Jay reviews The Man Who Thought He Was Napoleon: Towards a Political History of Madness by Laure Murat.

Robert C. Hockett and Saule T. Omarova (Cornell): Public Actors in Private Markets: Toward a Developmental Finance State. Joseph Heath (Toronto): Mistakes Were Made: The Role of Catallactic Bias in the Financial Crisis. Would the financial crisis have happened if women ran Wall Street? Banking Left: Danny Vinik on how the center moved after the financial crisis. Ross P. Buckley (UNSW): The Changing Nature of Banking and Why it Matters. What is the right size and purpose of the U.S. financial system? Annie Lowrey on how Wall Street is fleecing New York City. Renegades of Junk: Max Abelson, Jason Kelly, and David Carey on the rise and fall of the Drexel empire. Why Harvard professor Sendhil Mullainathan has mixed feelings when students take jobs in finance. Ben Bernanke isn’t the problem, the system is the problem: The former Federal Reserve chair is only the latest top regulator to head through the revolving door to the financial industry (and more). Huhnkie Lee (Michigan): The Moral Undercurrents Beneath the Regulatory Regime of Investor Protection. Is finance parasitic? David Glasner investigates. Charles Levinson on how Wall Street captured Washington’s effort to rein in banks. Wall Street Vampires: The plot against financial reform continues, despite the fact that one important measure is actually working. Financial reform is working, kind of: GE doesn’t want to be a bank anymore. Don’t break up the megabanks: The Sanders solution is appealing, but the “mega” isn’t the real problem.

Pierrick Bourrat (Sydney): Reconceptualising Evolution by Natural Selection. Darwinian conundrums: An interview by Richard Marshall of the LSE. Philip Ball on the strange inevitability of evolution: Good solutions to biology’s problems are astonishingly plentiful. What caused the Cambrian Explosion? Science can now understand far better one of the previously intractable problems in evolutionary biology — the origin of novelty. Victor Yu. Argonov (RAS): The Pleasure Principle as a Tool for Scientific Forecasting of Human Self-Evolution. Michele Loi (Minho), Elia Stupka (San Raffaele), and Lorenzo Del Savio (Milan): Epigenetics and Future Generations. Are humans the main driver of human evolution? Jerry A. Coyne reviews Evolving Ourselves: How Unnatural Selection and Nonrandom Mutation are Changing Life on Earth by Juan Enriquez and Steve Gullans. Humans are still evolving despite massive recent lifestyle changes, study finds. No, evolution doesn’t disprove Lean In’s arguments. Danielle Paquette on how survival of the fittest might have actually been survival of the richest. Mariam Thalos (Utah): Altruism, Selfishness and So Much In-Between. The biology of being good to others: H. Allen Orr reviews Does Altruism Exist?Culture, Genes, and the Welfare of Others by David Sloan Wilson. You can download Evolution of Social Behavior to Homo and After by Gigi Tevzadze (2013).