From Outlook India, a cover story on Mr Chidambaram’s War: How many soldiers will it take to contain the mounting rage of hundreds of millions of people? For better or for worse, India embarked on a path that has today made it one of the world's most unabashedly capitalist places. An interview with Meghnad Desai on books on India. The Economist Syndrome: In India, modernity and tradition don't clash, they meld. English spoken here: Chandrahas Choudhury on how globalization changed the Indian novel. What the censorship of a film about India's founding father shows about New Delhi's cautious relationship toward its own history. The controversy on Pakistan’s founder by a leader of India’s Hindu right-wing party reveals the ongoing tremors of Partition. From VQR, Jason Motlagh on sixty hours of terror: Ten gunmen, ten minutes; "it's do or die"; "no hostages should remain alive"; and "by the grace of Allah". As India still seethes over the bungled rescue efforts, those who survived the 60-hour ordeal reveal the full horror of what happened. Ten months after the devastating attacks in Mumbai by Pakistan-based militants, Lashkar-e-Taiba remains largely intact and determined to strike India again. Much as in India, there is a perceptible divide in the Pakistani media discourse about the nation and its threats. An interview with Farzana Shaikh, author of Making Sense of Pakistan. A review of Jinnah: India, Partition, Independence by Jaswant Singh. Misrule and the modern Mughals: Little has changed for millions across South Asia — if the poor lead lives of grinding poverty, the rich ape the lifestyle of the Mughals. An interview with Daniyal Mueenuddin on books on Pakistan.
From Cultural Survival, a special issue on Brazil. Getting it together at last: Brazil used to be all promise — now it is beginning to deliver. Will success spoil Brazil? Arthur Ituassu wants to know. A review of Brazil Under Lula: Economy, Politics, and Society Under the Worker-President. The first chapter from Insurgent Citizenship: Disjunctions of Democracy and Modernity in Brazil by James Holston. Down Mexico: Brazil-envy is rife in Latin America’s other big economy. The fall of Mexico: The government’s assault on drug cartels has become an amorphous civil war that threatens to bring down the nation. The most violent city on Earth: Ciudad Juarez takes on the drug cartels. An article on Mexico's leftist La Jornada: 25 years of rabble rousing. From LRB, Judith Baker and Ian Hacking walk the highlands of the Andes. Does the "democratisation of culture" in Venezuela under Chavez spell indoctrination? The last revolutionary: Fidel Castro has survived 600 assassination attempts to become the world symbol of anti-capitalism. Castro’s favourite capitalist: Will Sherritt International come to regret dealing with Communist Cuba? Two semi-intrepid travelers meditate (with the help of a great deal of puffing) on the Cuban Communist roots of an American capitalist icon. An interview with Claudio Katz on Latin America, the right and imperialism: "The solution to the crisis of capitalism has to be political". Reflections on a decade of civic revolutions in Latin America: Having concluded that US and World Bank prescriptions failed their region, a new generation of leaders seek economic and social development through homegrown strategies.
From TLS, a review of books on Versailles. From TNR, a review of The Information Master: Jean-Baptiste Colbert's Secret State Intelligence System by Jacob Soll. A review of A Revolution in Taste: The Rise of French Cuisine 1650-1800 by Susan Pinkard. The Puritanical French: A review of The Secret Wife of Louis XIV: Francoise d'Aubigne, Madame de Maintenon by Veronica Buckley (and more). A review of Eccentricity and the Cultural Imagination in Nineteenth-Century Paris by Miranda Gill. Lauren Elkin reviews Gilded Youth: Three Lives in France’s Belle Epoque by Kate Cambor (and more). A review of Chaque pas doit etre un but by Jacques Chirac. Eric Martone (Stony Brook): In the Shadow of Rousseau: Gender and the 2007 French Presidential Elections. France without illusions: The French president vowed to take on dictators everywhere — has he now given up on human rights entirely? "Anti-intellectual" Sarkozy provokes left by honouring Albert Camus, accused of point-scoring. Guy Sorman on the twilight of France’s republican aristocracy. A review of Ethnicity and Equality: France in the Balance by Azouz Begag. From FT, a review essay on France. In a move that will have da Vinci, David, Ingres and Michelangelo rolling over in their graves, McDonald's is opening a restaurant below the famous I.M. Pei pyramid at the Louvre. Bonjour tristesse: Why are the French so prone to suicide? In France, a new generation of women says non to nude sunbathing. Asterix books are still being published, but should they be? (and more and more) Did you hear the one about the lady who married the Eiffel Tower? No, really.
From The American Scholar, an article on Morocco: The living and the dead. The Berlin Wall of the Desert: Stefan Simanowitz reports from Western Sahara on the wall that has separated a nation for 29 years (and more). Looting Mali: As demand for its antiquities soars, the West African country is losing its most prized artifacts to illegal sellers and smugglers. A review of The Dark Sahara: America's War on Terror in Africa by Jeremy Keenan. Back in his native Sudan for the first time in years, Jamal Mahjoub observes the capital’s newfound oil wealth and argues that focusing narrowly on Darfur while ignoring the secessionist South could spell big trouble for all of Sudan. The worst country on Earth: Piracy, poverty and perdition — Somalia takes the prize. A review of Blood River: A Journey to Africa's Broken Heart by Tim Butcher. What’s yours is mine: The scramble for the world’s resources has barely abated with the recession, and our ecological debts are mounting. We are killing in the light of God: More than five million people have died in the war that has been raging in eastern Congo, and now, yet another rebel group is at large in the country. From NYRB, a review of books on the Congo; and Dictator Mugabe makes a comeback. A review of Dinner With Mugabe: The Untold Story of a Freedom Fighter Who Became a Tyrant by Heidi Holland and Mugabe: Power, Plunder, and the Struggle for Zimbabwe by Meredith Martin. Why do South Africans hate Nigerians? Botswana, one of Africa’s most successful countries, sets a trend that more can follow (and more). An interview with Sam Kiley on books about colonial Africa.