From Human Affairs, a special issue on Pragmatism in the Contemporary World. An interview with James Kalb, author of The Tyranny of Liberalism: Understanding and Overcoming Administered Freedom, Inquisitorial Tolerance, and Equality by Command. In praise of the coup: Military takeovers can be a good thing for African democracy. From TNR, a review of Children of the Revolution: The French, 1799-1914 by Robert Gildea. From International Viewpoint, a look at how the crisis overdetermines all of world politics and how the left should respond. A look at how FreedomWorks gave the Teabaggers a Dirty Sanchez. From NYRB, a review essay on the flowering genius of Maria Sibylla Merian (and more at Bookforum). From the IRB, does edgy YA fiction go too far? Julie McGuire wants to know; and a review of Ceremonial Violence: A Psychological Explanation of School Shootings by Jonathan Fast. A review of Columbine by Dave Cullen (and an interview and more and more and more and more and more; and a series at Slate, including the four most important lessons of Columbine). A review of No Right to Remain Silent: The Tragedy at Virginia Tech by Lucinda Roy. Harvey Mansfield has a question for the economists: Is the overly predicted life worth living?
A new issue of Symmetry is out. From New Statesman, a special issue on how no one rules the world. Bruce Ackerman on why we need a Commission on Presidential Power. Meet the bankers and brokers responsible for the financial crisis — and the officials who let them get away with it. UC-Berkeley, where ’60s-era students stood atop a police car and ignited free-speech protests, is creating a Center for the Comparative Study of Right-Wing Movements. From Episcopal Life, an article on the "emergent church", growing but hard to define. From New Internationalist, a special issue on Mothers Who Die. Culture & barbarism: Terry Eagleton on metaphysics in a time of terrorism. From Harvard Magazine, here's a walk through history with Justice Ginsburg as guide. A review of Lorenzo Benet's Trailblazer: An Intimate Biography of Sarah Palin. The first chapter from In Search of Another Country: Mississippi and the Conservative Counterrevolution by Joseph Crespino. Is greed good? It depends on the times. More and more and more and more and more and more and more on Cheever: A Life by Blake Bailey (and more at Bookforum). Punning, it seems, like every non-deadly sin, is easier to excuse than to resist.
From Ctheory, Graham Potts (York): "Love Hurts": Hunter S. Thompson, the Marquis de Sade and St. Paul queer Alain Badiou's truth and fidelity; and Colin Campbell (York): The Terror. From Financial Times, Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg on a new era of accountable capitalism; John Kay on the fallacy of equating economic power with clout; and Nicholas Stern on why the world needs an unbiased risk assessor. From Economic Principals, here’s an instance where self-absorption has got the better of the pink sheet; and physiognomy as destiny: It’s as good a time as any to review why Geithner is at the Treasury and Summers is not (and more). The United States of Ponzi: Nouriel Roubini on the Madoff in the mirror (and a profile of Roubini). Out of the closet: Capitalism has failed — the time is right for communism. From FP, there is no Congo: Why the only way to help Congo is to stop pretending it exists; and Portrait of a Failed State: Somalia's tattered landscape is a window into the country's troubled past. Forensics Fraud: Experts say a video shows a doctor manufacturing evidence — so why is a man still on death row? A review of Richard E. Nisbett's Intelligence and How to Get It: Why Schools and Culture Count.
From Evolutionary Psychology, a review of Randy Thornhill and Steven W. Gangestad's The Evolutionary Biology of Human Female Sexuality. From Vanity Fair, talking to New York Times insiders, Mark Bowden examines the nexus of dynasty and character that has brought the 57-year-old Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr. to the precipice. The flat tax is flat-lining: The meltdown of Baltic countries shows what a bad idea this gimmick always was. Robert Reich on why we need more stimulus, not more bailout; and on a short citizen's guide to kooks, demagogues, and right-wingers on tax day. The crimes of incest that are on the rise: Are there more Dungeon Dads? Epochalypse soon: "21" December 2012?????!?!?!? Immanuel Wallerstein on Af-Pak: Obama's War. From LRB, a review of Cornelius Cardew: A Life Unfinished by John Tilbury (and more from Bookforum); and a review of Correspondence: The Foundation of the Situationist International (June 1957-60) by Guy Debord. Clive James on what porn is really for: To keep one's mind off sex while one's partner is absent (and more). A look at how "f—- the recession " became a slogan. Robert Stacy McCain is in search of right-wing Gonzo, or Why Culture11 sucked so bad.