The inaugural issue of Fray: The Quarterly of True Stories is out. From NYRB, Thomas Powers writes on Iran: The Threat; and Michael Massing is embedded in Iraq. From Newsweek, how history informs our world: Jon Meacham on the stories we tell ourselves; and who was more important: Lincoln or Darwin? When noise pollution is not making us sick and anxious, it is literally killing us; how do we turn it off? A review of The Studs Terkel Interviews: Film and Theater. A review of The Prodigal Tongue by Mark Abley and By Hook or by Crook: A Journey In Search of English by David Crystal. From In These Times, Chris Lehmann on freedom of the press moguls. From Cracked, here are 6 famous songs that don't mean what you think; and the 5 creepiest advertising techniques of the (near) future. From Discover, here are 20 things you didn't know about oil. Can we recapture the excitement of science? A new study says gentrification isn't a bad word, and that on average, a changing neighborhood can be a boon for its residents. The American road trip is dead — Good riddance. Is queer history history with an agenda? What is a prostitute? In Egypt, the oldest profession isn't just a sex-for-cash exchange. Why do economists have to take the fun out of everything? An article on wine economics and economical wine. Which catchphrases should be "thrown under the bus"?
From Newsweek, the voters of Appalachia A - Are Hicks, B - Are Hillbillies, C - Are Rednecks, D - Don't appreciate where you're going with this; is pandering the key to election success? An article on the noble history of flip-flopping. Is Barack a typical pol? McCain wants you to think so—which is good, in the long run, for Obama. Andy Borowitz on how liberal bloggers accuse Obama of trying to win election. Late-Period Limbaugh: Bush is wildly unpopular; McCain is nobody’s idea of a movement guy; conservatism is cracking up — what’s the king of talk radio to do? The three geographies: Joel Kotkin and Mark Schill argue the geographic forms help predict voter behavior. Sympathy for the devil: A review of Dinner with Mugabe by Heidi Holland. Here are 5 terrible life lessons Hollywood loves to teach you. Sex is interesting, even when it's bad. Sex memoirs, on the other hand. Pink Viagra: While pharmaceutical companies battle to end desire discrepancy, some feminists fear the medicalization of not being in the mood. The heaviest burden: An article on Nietzsche and the death of God. James V. Schall, S.J. on what philosophers play with. Witold Rybczynski is searching for the true legacy of Buckminster Fuller. From Miller-McCune, a three-part series on affirmative action. University presses gathered in Montreal last week to discuss the future, and Scott McLemee comes back with a report.
A new issue of Words Without Borders is out. From The Wilson Quarterly, Wilfred M. McClay on The Burden of the Humanities; and an essay on the day the TV died: Digital TV will be pretty much the same as analog TV, just a bit sharper, with a few more channels. From New English Review, Christopher Orlet on Bachelorhood and its Discontents. From IHE, a new field of research is emerging, devoted to the study of ignorance — Scott McLemee did not know that. A review of Declassified: 50 Top-Secret Documents That Changed History by Thomas B. Allen. From Forward, what kind of interviewer confuses Hamas and hummus? From THES, a review of In Defense of Lost Causes by Slavoj Zizek; and the ability to improvise is a crucial sign of high intelligence; so why does it enjoy so little status within the academy? A review of I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone by Stephanie Kuehnert. Michael Shermer on the real evolution anniversary. Who in the hell would make a film about the national debt? David Walker, that’s who. Wendell Berry on Faustian economics: Hell hath no limits. Here are 5 myths about the death of the American factory. A look at how user-generated content makes the Web the new sweatshop. From Popular Science, here's a list of 10 of the deadliest diseases. Salsa has become the biggest international dance craze since the advent of rock'n'roll in the 1950s.
A new issue of Edge is out. From New York, founding editor Clay Fekler dies with a legacy: Understanding—and explaining—the city as a pageant of ambition. Andrew Bacevich on what Bush hath wrought. Brad Reed on the 10 most awesomely bad moments of the Bush presidency. An interview with Paul Alexander, author of Machiavelli's Shadow: The Rise and Fall of Karl Rove. Soccer is war? Not anymore — across the Continent, rabid nationalism is giving way to a new European spirit. From Mother Jones, Iran panic? Talk about it with the experts. From TLS, a review of books on the many ages of Herodotus. The world’s oceans are filling with bottles, wrappers and other flotsam; is there anything better to be done than picking it off the beach, one piece at a time? William Saletan on a genetic theory of homosexuality. Celebrity worship might not be an unalloyed bad thing, says one researcher, although it's important to be a little finicky about who to emulate. How did the bikini, the once-feminist outfit of Twiggy and Tina, morph into the shame of Lindsay and Brit-Brit? The famous words most often attributed to Socrates, “All I know is that I know nothing” is indeed a misquote. In his free time, Rick752 helps millions skip banners and pop-ups; should a $40 billion industry be scared? We're a bunch of dorks: Of all the messages sent into space, which ones are good?
From CLR, Judith Harris on imag(in)ing America: Fascist Italy offers a case study in an extraordinarily successful analysis of national image, its skillful manipulation and its not always predictable consequences. We are entering a dangerous period with the rise of leaders like Bobby Jindal and the agenda of Christian nationalist masterminds like David Barton. Animal-Rights Farm: William Saletan on ape rights and the myth of animal equality. Blueprint for power: The German feuilletons spent the spring debating the relationship between architecture and morality. From Vanity Fair, a cover story on Hollywood’s Next Wave; and James Wolcott hangs with kid culture’s new power brokers. From Esquire, Anya Yurchyshyn on the case for the novella. Christopher R. Beha reviews Personal Days by Ed Park. From Prospect, the Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, winner of the intellectuals poll, is the modern face of the Sufi Ottoman tradition; and he may deny it, but Orhan Pamuk is Turkey's most important political voice. Paying attention is a more important skill than you might think — and new evidence suggests it can be taught. An interview with Ernest Freeberg, author of Democracy’s Prisoner: Eugene V. Debs, the Great War, and the Right to Dissent. In praise of political insults: Humor can be a welcome check on pomposity. It’s not a gay thing: Why the debate over same-sex marriage misses the point.
Henry Farrell, Eric Lawrence and John Sides (GWU): Self-Segregation or Deliberation? Blog Readership, Participation and Polarization in American Politics. Want to know if waterboarding is torture? Ask Christopher Hitchens (with video). Years later, Stanley Milgram's shock experiments still provide insight. From Powell's, an interview with Ethan Canin, author of America America. Need press? Repeat: "Green", "sex", "cancer", "secret", "fat" — strategic word selection can catapult an announcement. Clearly the timing was right: An interview with Mark Kurlansky, author of The Last Fish Tale: The Fate of the Atlantic and Survival in Gloucester, America's Oldest Fishing Port and Most Original Town. The 40th anniversary of the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty finds the NPT more vulnerable—and more vital—than ever. From Scientific American, an interview with Marco Iacoboni on the mirror neuron revolution: Explaining what makes humans social. From Seed, father of cognitive neuroscience Michael Gazzaniga and original New Journalist Tom Wolfe discuss status, free will, the human condition, and "The Interpreter" (and a review of Human: The Science Behind What Makes Us Unique). Just how stupid are we? Pretty stupid, it would seem, when we come across headlines like this: "Homer Simpson, Yes—1st Amendment, "Doh". Simon Blackburn reviews Jim Holt's Stop Me If You've Heard This.
From Triple Canopy, Big Brother's Portfolio: Remaking photography with Google Street View; and a report from the Rebel’s Republic, a breakaway state in western Bosnia where the Minister of Smiles rules alongside the Minister of Artificial Blondes. Slavoj Zizek on The Secret Clauses of the Liberal Utopia. From Vanity Fair, Gail Sheehy on Hillaryland at War: Hillary Clinton’s campaign had it all; it was a battle that revealed why she came so close to victory, as well as why she didn't make it. A review of Imagining Nabokov: Russia Between Art and Politics by Nina L. Khrushcheva. Sex every day? How men and women differ on the idea. From LRB, a review of books by Philip K. Dick. David Goodhart on how the possibility of the break up of Britain in the near future should prompt the English to think seriously about who they are — and who they would like to become. Who owns Central Park? How Frederick Law Olmsted’s 843 acres of civilizing wilderness became a type-A battleground. What's colorless and tasteless and smells like money? In the heyday of campus radicalism, protests took place at the drop of a hat and Marxism ruled, but today's young are quieter; there's still commitment but now it's to getting a good job. Uncensored, racist, and shockingly nasty, online gossip forum Juicy Campus has students trembling — but should it be banned?
From Ethics and International Affairs, Allen Buchanan (Duke) and Robert O. Keohane (Princeton): The Legitimacy of Global Governance Institutions. From the Journal of Social Philosophy, David Heyd (HUJ): Justice and Solidarity: The Contractarian Case against Global Justice. A new issue of New Perspectives Quarterly is out, on post-globalization. Resetting Earth's thermostat: In the race to respond to climate change, it's time to invest in an alternative solution — geo-engineering. For the third time in less than 15 years, the End of the World draws near. The World Values Survey finds happiness is rising around the world. From Mclean's, a look at how Canada stole the American Dream. From Esquire, does America have any culture? Chuck Klosterman goes to Germany to teach a class; his students teach him a lesson about how the world views us. From The New Yorker, Elizabeth Kolbert on the island in the wind: A Danish community’s victory over carbon emissions; James Surowiecki on the blame game and the price of oil; and George Packer on Obama’s Iraq problem. Christopher Hitchens on a book drive for Iraq: How you can do your bit to build democracy. From Commentary, an article on why Iraq was inevitable. A look at how terrorism paranoia killed 1,600 Americans in 2002. Frank Rich on terrorists rocking the vote in 2008.
From World Affairs, Peter Beinart on The Other Wilsonianism (and more on the state of patriotism). E.L. Doctorow on Bush's rejection of knowledge: Just as Moby-Dick was too much for Ahab, our new century may be too difficult for us to comprehend. A review of The Anti-Intellectual Presidency by Elvin T. Lim. Oliver Stone and W: The openly political director goes where some fear to tread. From CJR, an article on “attacking” McCain’s military record: What Wesley Clark really said, and how the press missed it. Pulp Fiction (and Nonfiction): An increasing number of books will be — and should be — mulched. From The Wall Street Journal, here's the case for and against nuclear power. Today’s Olympic Games are designed to make big bucks—and it’s not the hosts who are walking away with the gold. Can weeds help solve the climate crisis? More and more on Strange Fruit: Why Both Sides are Wrong in the Race Debate by Kenan Malik. Stacey D'Erasmo reviews Atmospheric Disturbances by Rivka Galchen. The many figures of fitness: Exercise expert Joanna Hall reveals how sport dictate body shape. From Utne, an article on word-of-mouth campaigns, poisoning the grapevine. While wrestling, crime, sex and tulipmania spice up popular books on economics, the academic discipline often remains impenetrable. David Warsh on the other meaning of Bill Gates.