From The Chronicle, a special report on journalism and academia, including thinkers on how the decline of news media will affect higher education; and a look at how philosophy and journalism, two well-known approaches to truth seeking, make strange companions — and invaluable ones. Journalists need to stop being so lazy and unimaginative — here are 22 ideas for changing the way news is produced. A report by Leonard Downie Jr., formerly of The Washington Post, sets forth a number of ways to pay for journalism — one of them is government money. Columbia, the leading journalism school in the country, has placed its imprimatur on the idea of government funding of the news. From Vanity Fair, can newfangled web ads save journalism? Matt Pressman investigates. Will "anarchist" American news website Spot.us save journalism? From The Monthly, here's a short history of the media future. The "time bomb" effect of biased news: A study shows that over time even the most sophisticated readers can be manipulated. The media sucks: Sometimes, there aren't two sides to a debate. Polarized news?: An article on the media's moderate bias. Thomas Edsall on why journalism should own its liberalism — and then manage it, challenge it, and account for it. Taking on the "Democrat-Media Complex": An interview with conservative Internet entrepreneur Andrew Breitbart. The smart move: Give Frank Rich a show on Fox News. Summers as an intern at the Houston Chronicle helped turn Molly Ivins from a River Oaks girl into the most distinctive liberal voice in Texas journalism (and more and more and more). From TAP, a look at how Kathleen Parker became America's most-read woman columnist; and twilight of the op-ed columnist: What is the fate of the syndicated newspaper columnist in a world where online punditry is plentiful?
From TED, Robert Wright: on the evolution of compassion; Dayananda Saraswati on the profound journey of compassion; Faisal Abdul Rauf on finding your compassion; James Forbes on compassion at the dinner table; Jackie Tabick on the balancing act of compassion; and Robert Thurman on expanding your circle of compassion. From On the Human, Dan Batson on empathic concern and altruism in humans. Can a vision of a more empathic world change the way we behave toward each other? Edward Dolnick reviews The Age of Empathy: Nature’s Lessons for a Kinder Society by Frans de Waal (and more and more and more and more and more and more). New research finds those who feel a strong connection to the natural world have a more caring attitude toward others. The idea that evolution explains selfishness well and altruism poorly is starting to stink — can we please bury it now? Noah Lederman on lessons in altruism from geneticists and baboons. A review of The Power of Kindness: The Unexpected Benefits of Leading a Compassionate Life by Piero Ferrucci. A review of On Kindness by Adam Phillips and Barbara Taylor (and more). Jonathan Zittrain on how the Internet is made up of millions of disinterested acts of kindness, curiosity and trust. A review of Why We Cooperate by Michael Tomasello. The goodness of crowds: When large numbers of people give a little, they accomplish a lot. It pays to be nice: A look at how emotions shape our economic decisions. Research suggests a genetic tendency to depression is much less likely to be realized in a culture centered on collectivistic rather than individualistic values.
From LRB, a review of books on Roland Barthes. The "Should We Stay or Should We Go?" Matrix: Where our top opinion-makers stand on the Afghanistan question. Was Y2K a waste? Farhad Manjoo investigates. How viable is modelling as a job and how realistic is the prospect of earning a living out of it? A review of Girl Zines: Making Media, Doing Feminism by Alison Piepmeier. From the latest issue of Interface: A Journal for and about Social Movements, Jenny Gunnarsson Payne (Stockholm): Feminist Media as Alternative Media? A Literature Review; and Piotr Konieczyny (Pitt): Wikipedia: Community or Social Movement? From Forbes, here's a special report on the world's most powerful people. Anachronistic arrogance: How scorning our intellectual mothers and fathers makes us real dumb real fast. Jesse Larner on the health care speech Obama should give but won't. Want real reform? Let's start with Congress. Richard Ross spent five years traveling over three continents, photographing the interiors of bomb shelters for Waiting for the End of the World. Mount Rushmore carvings will be first test of plan to guard historic sites from ravages of weather and pollution by creating accurate 3D models. A whistleblower says estimated oil reserves figures were distorted by US pressure. High in protein, low in fat, delicious, ubiquitous: why not eat bugs? Quiet, please: Libraries are being transformed into rowdy social spaces, with disastrous consequences. Start using these words: Impress friends, woo the opposite sex, and increase self-esteem with these wholly unnecessary vocabulary enhancements!
From the International Journal of Zizek Studies, Sheila Kunkle (Vermont): Embracing the Paradox: Zizek’s Illogical Logic; Roque Farran (Conicet-UNC): The Concept of Citizenship in Postmarxist Theory: The Return of the Political and the Issue of Madness; Federico Bellini (Siena): Beckett’s Ticklish Characters: Reading Beckett through Zizek; Luke John Howie (Monash): Representing Terrorism: Reanimating Post-9/11 New York City; Kareen Ror Malone (UWG): Female Rivals: Feminism, Lacan & Zizek try to think of something new to say; and Slavoj Zizek on Notes Towards a Definition of Communist Culture. From First Things, Edward T. Oakes, S.J. on Slavoj Zizek, religion and violence; and a review of The Monstrosity of Christ: Paradox or Dialectic? by Slavoj Zizek and John Milbank (and more). A review of Violence by Slavoj Zizek. Hollywood Today: Slavoj Zizek on a report from an ideological frontline. From Democracy Now, an interview with Slavoj Zizek on a bunch of stuff (and more from New Statesman on why he rejects mainstream political theory, why he supports Barack Obama, and why we need Marx more than ever). Time to revive communism: A review of First As Tragedy, Then As Farce by Slavoj Zizek (and more and more). Post-Wall: Slavoj Zizek on neo-anti-Communism. From zizekspeaks at Twitter, "When Lacan writes, Do not sacrifice your desire!, he exhorts you to dare". A review of Zizek: A (Very) Critical Introduction by Marcus Pound. So you'd like to know what the hell is Zizek talking about (and a clip from "Zizek!")