From Finance and Development, a special section on Asia's growing influence: Asia is moving into a leadership role in the world economy. From Beijing Review, China's aspiration to build the best universities in the world will take a long time to come to fruition; and is China repeating Japan's mistakes? Economists disagree over whether foreigners should be allowed to invest in stock index futures (and more and more). Christopher Buckley takes a stroll around Hanoi, a buzzing city coming to grips with its war-torn, colonial past, its Communist present, and a whole lot of oncoming traffic. Temp Nation: A series on the demise of "lifetime employment" in Japan. A review of Everything Is Broken: A Tale of Catastrophe in Burma by Emma Larkin (and more). Speak Korean, the language of love: Foreigners in South Korea take language lessons for many reasons, among them to meet a mate. A review of The Art of Not Being Governed: An Anarchist History of Upland Southeast Asia by James C. Scott (and more at Bookforum). The introduction to Japan Transformed: Political Change and Economic Restructuring by Frances McCall Rosenbluth and Michael F. Thies. Should you teach your kids Chinese? While China’s rise is real, Chinese is in no way rising at the same rate. In the cause of happiness: In a nascent democracy like Bhutan, the media is perceived as having a very different role to play, one that is socially committed. NLD and the Politics of Boycott: How the decision by Burma's main opposition party will affect the country's political process. An article on exploring Japanese popular culture as a soft power resource. A federal resettlement program for Burmese Karen sees 4,000 refugees starting new lives in Canada. From 3:AM, Ronald Kelts on why "Cool Japan" is over.


Carey Fitzgerald and Mitchell Whitaker (CMU): Examining the Acceptance of and Resistance to Evolutionary Psychology. From 3:AM, a review of Cold World: The Aesthetics of Dejection and the Politics of Militant Dysphoria by Dominic Fox. A review of Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy by Eric Metaxas (and more). It's unfortunate that the phrase "lipstick on a pig" has become so cliched, because there's no better way to describe the "new" National Organized Labor Journal. An excerpt from The Titanic Awards: Celebrating the Worst of Travel by Doug Lansky. More on Steves's Travel as a Political Act. A look at 8 incredible health innovations that transform lives. A review of Greatest Emancipations: How the West Abolished Slavery by Jim Powell. An excerpt from Eavesdropping: An Intimate History by John L. Locke. Pope Benedict declares public service a "noble vocation". Dark Roasted Blend on unusual and marvelous maps. The Twitter Devolution: Far from being a tool of revolution in Iran over the last year, the Internet, in many ways, just complicated the picture. Consumerism and capitalism are not sustained by corporations and advertising but driven by competition among consumers for status. From Standpoint, David Womersley on Trevor-Roper and Gibbon: A Tale of Two Historians. U.N. special rapporteur Philip Alston, Miller-McCune’s most recent Wonking Class Hero, takes on the arms-length warfare of drones. From THES, a review of Is the Rectum a Grave? And Other Essays by Leo Bersani; and a review of I do I undo I redo: The Textual Genesis of Modernist Selves by Finn Fordham. The man who wanted to be Woody Allen: Englishman David Simmons celebrates American Jewish comedians who just want to be loved. Prepare for the catchphrase, "HTML5 it!"


Christina S. Chen (Vanderbilt): Atheism and the Assumptions of Science and Religion. From The Christian Post, a review of The Christian Delusion: Why Faith Fails (and part 2). Serious question: What does theology have to do with reality? A review of Radical Judaism: Rethinking God and Tradition by Arthur Green. The first chapter from Spirituality for Dummies by Sharon Janis. A review of Christians in the Movies: A Century of Saints and Sinners by Peter E. Dans. God, science and philanthropy: Nathan Schneider on the politics of the Templeton Foundation's "Big Questions". From The Christian Century, a review of Life After Death: The Evidence by Dinesh D'Souza, After Lives: A Guide to Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory by John Casey, and A Very Brief History of Eternity by Carlos Eire; and more on God Is Not One by Stephen Prothero (and more and more and more and more and more). Peter Manseau reviews Stephen Batchelor's Confession of a Buddhist Atheist. From FiveBooks, a series of interviews on books on Islam. From Liberty, an article on religious wars and religious freedom: A troubled history (and part 2 and part 3); a review of In the Name of Heaven: 3000 Years of Religious Persecution by Mary Jane Engh; and anti-Semitism is a historical enigma, and yet the question still remains: Why the Jews? A review of Ten Things I Hate about Christianity: Working through the Frustrations of Faith by Jason Berggren. Daniel Everett on the Piraha, the people who define happiness without God. Ross Douthat on why the Catholic Church is finished. If God is real, and religious believers can perceive him, why is anyone an atheist? Religion scholar Donna Freitas says reading the Bible bores her to death. Stefanos Geroulanos on his book An Atheism that Is Not Humanist Emerges in French Thought.


Stranger and more brutal than fiction: Lorraine Adams looks at what happens when innocents are swept up in counter-terror efforts. Roger Scruton on how we have allowed too many things in our world to be priced. It’s strange to think that just a few years ago, it felt as if design schools and studios nationwide must have been holding special screenings of The Graduate. The Rise of the Designer: In the early half of the 21st century, it is the Designer, not the Architect, who will arbitrate and mediate our experiences, both real and virtual. Former New York Times Supreme Court reporter Linda Greenhouse talks about Roe vs. Wade, partisan politics, and the future of abortion rights (and more). A review of The Crisis of the Twelfth Century: Power, Lordship, and the Origins of European Government by Thomas Bisson. A review of Bursts: The Hidden Pattern Behind Everything We Do by Albert-Laszlo Barabasi. Darwin at Work: Harold L. Sirkin on the survival of the fittest companies. Police are again investigating John Mark Karr, who falsely confessed to killing JonBenet Ramsey — a trail of death threats, gender switches and a "little girl sex cult" called The Immaculates. From Forbes, here are four reasons why airlines are always struggling. Restaurant loos are now seen as a key part of the eating-out experience; Peter York flushes out five different approaches. Conflicts, whether over ties to the pharmaceutical industry or fights over new categories of illness, come with the turf in revising psychiatry’s most important reference. Decades ago modern medicine all but stamped out the nervous breakdown, but like a stubborn virus, the phrase has mutated. The introduction to What's Luck Got to Do with It? The History, Mathematics, and Psychology of the Gambler's Illusion by Joseph Mazur.


From Limina, Brydie-Leigh Bartleet (Griffith): Conductors and Authorship: A Postmodern Critique of Historical and Contemporary Perspectives. A review of How Equal Temperament Ruined Harmony (and Why You Should Care) by Ross W. Duffin. From Logos, an article on Joseph Haydn. A subject and servant of Europe’s most cosmopolitan empire, the composer Joseph Haydn played an important role in the emergence of German cultural nationalism during the 18th and 19th centuries. I'll Be Bach: A computer program is writing great, original works of classical music — will human composers soon be obsolete? A review of Changing the Score: Arias, Prima Donnas, and the Authority of Performance by Hilary Poriss. David Estalote on improvisation and musical language: Imagine if your use of the English language was limited to reading literature with little ability to converse with friends or express your thoughts in your own words — that is how most classical music making has been for the last century. A review of Sibelius: A Composer's Life and the Awakening of Finland by Glenda Dawn Goss (and more). Age of the Castrato: Thousands of boys were castrated in the name of music, and for most the benefits outweighed the drawbacks. A review of After the Golden Age: Romantic Pianism and Modern Performance by Kenneth Hamilton. A review of The Triumph of Music: Composers, Musicians and their Audiences 1700 to the Present by Tim Blanning. From Music and Politics, Christopher Moore on performance and the paradigm of historical contextualism. Gabriel Boylan reviews No Such Thing as Silence: John Cage's 4'33" by Kyle Gann (and more). Chopin, the public face of Poland: During his brief life, the Polish master of the musical miniature became a living symbol of his troubled nation.


From Regulation, Bruce Yandle on much ado about Pigou; and a warning: This column may be hazardous. Here's a primer on Austrian Economics. David Gordon reviews Literature and the Economics of Liberty: Spontaneous Order in Culture. Peter J. Boettke, Bettina Bien Greaves, Israel M. Kirzner, and Peter T. Leeson celebrate Ludwig von Mises’s Human Action. A review of Challenging Institutional Analysis and Development: The Bloomington School by Paul Dragos Aligica and Peter Boettke. An interview with Gary Becker: "[I'm] basically an optimist". Alex Tabarrok on capitalism, Hollywood's miscast villain: Why the film industry is so good at getting business wrong. Don’t blame financiers for the recent financial crisis, says Larry Ribstein — the true villains are Hollywood moviemakers. Herbert Gintis reviews Meltdown: A Free-Market Look at Why the Stock Market Collapsed, the Economy Tanked, and Government Bailouts Will Make Things Worse by Thomas E. Woods, and reviews of The Corruption of Economics by Mason Gaffney, Fred Harrison and Kris Feder. Carmen Reinhart reviews The Fearful Rise of Markets: A Short View of Global Bubbles and Synchronised Meltdowns by John Authers. A review of The Hesitant Hand: Taming Self-Interest in the History of Economic Ideas by Steven G. Medema. A review of Identity Economics by George Akerlof and Rachel Kranton (and more). Where hard physics combines with traders' animal passions, the bestiary of financialized civilization becomes imbued with the relations between hunter and hunted. Doug Henwood on how recessions are better for right than left (and part 2). Does Washington care about unemployment? Maybe the rich have not won — a new approach to capping income at the top is starting to gain momentum.


A new issue of Ducts is out. The mess he made: A life-long slob decides it's time to get organized. From The Hindu, a review of Bazaars, Conversations and Freedom: For a Market Culture Beyond Greed and Fear by Rajni Bakshi. Life after death, in digital form: When you’re gone, what happens to your Web estate? Ladies gotta get some: A book battle between The Surrender by Toni Bentley and The Sexual Life of Catherine M. by Catherine Millet. Oh, that Seventies feeling: Historians are finally starting to show that there was a lot more to the “Me Decade” than we might have thought. How language reflects the balance of good and bad in the world. A review of books on Iran. How sweet it wasn't: Hershey’s W. Jeffrey Hurst explains the difference between Maya chocolate and the stuff in the brown can. A review of Quentin Tarantino: Life at the Extremes by Aaron Barlow. Is the daytime talk-show dead? Tyra Banks seems to think so. Apparently the Gods of Google have descended from Cybertopia Mountain to issue a new commandment, inscribed in search engine optimized stone: “Thou shalt not be a cougar”. Why a good memory is bad for you: The counterintuitive finding that too good a memory makes foragers inefficient reveals a glimpse of the forces that govern the evolution of intelligence. Hegel at Georgetown and the Master-Slave Dialectic: An excerpt from Thomas Chatterton Williams’s Losing My Cool. Here are 6 famous explorers who shaped the world (with insane lies). A review of Osama Van Halen by Michael Muhammad Knight. These days, there's a good chance that a young mom or dad will point at Peter Yarrow and tell the kids, “That's Puff the magic dragon's daddy”. Brendan Boyle reviews The Thief of Time: Philosophical Essays on Procrastination.


From TLS, a review of Scandal on Stage: European Theater as Moral Trial by Theodore Ziolkowski. From Arion, a review of The Necessity of Theater: The Art of Watching and Being Watched by Paul Woodruff (and more). From Consciousness, Literature and the Arts, an essay on the theatre and civilisation; a review of Memory in Play: From Aeschylus to Sam Shepard by Attilio Favorini; and a review of Stage Fright, Animals, and Other Theatrical Problems by Nicolas Ridout. Young Jean Lee wants to banish Disney from America's stages — the result is exciting and unnerving. Mere fact, mere fiction: In an impassioned riposte to his critics, David Hare argues why good theatre should never be confused with journalism. A review of The American Stage: Writing on Theater From Washington Irving to Tony Kushner (from the Library of America). Measuring theatre success: The play's a hit but how can you tell? Backers of a new system claim audience reaction is the best indication of effectiveness. From Bookforum, Deborah Jowitt reviews The New Music Theater: Seeing the Voice, Hearing the Body by Eric Salzman and Thomas Desi. The new face of Yiddish theater: An article on the magic of Shane Baker. Enter God, stage left: Sex and politics permeate the theatre, but religion rarely gets a look in — and it's time for a comeback. From The New Yorker, a look at David Mamet on his methods as a director and writer. Are plays proper literature? The collaborative and transient nature of theatre clearly spooks the gatekeepers of "real literature" — it shouldn't. Are we in an age of globalized theatre? Dan Rebellato investigates. Benjamin Radford on the theatre haunted by a doughnut-eating poltergeist. Check out PlayBlog for Broadway news and theatre information by the staff of Playbill.com.


Michael Betancourt (SCAD): Immaterial Value and Scarcity in Digital Capitalism. From Law and Contemporary Problems, a special issue on making markets in forbidden exchange, with articles on human blood, organ procurement, egg and sperm donation, surrogate motherhood, and parenthood. Catholics are accustomed to hearing about miracles and people being cured through the intercession of the saints, but today's materialistic culture often looks on this with scepticism. To become a Catholic saint today, it takes money, a medical miracle, and a compelling vita. A review of Pineapple Culture: A History of the Tropical and Temperate Zones by Gary Y. Okihiro. More on The Pathologies of Individual Freedom: Hegel's Social Theory by Axel Honneth. Is leading one’s own troops to slaughter ever justified?: Christopher Hitchens reviews The Somme: The Darkest Hour on the Western Front by Peter Hart. The War Over the War on Terror: Can the Obama administration successfully divorce terrorism from religion? Blame Hitler: Why Europe is responding so timidly to its economic crisis. A review of The Authenticity Hoax: How We Got Lost Finding Ourselves by Andrew Potter and More Money Than Brains: Why Schools Suck, College Is Crap and Idiots Think They’re Right by Laura Penny (and more). "It’s interesting how there does seem to be a kind of morality of reading": Sonya Chung on breaking up with books. From Lapham's Quarterly, James Franco on acting and the limits of control. Commie Girl in the OC: Laurie Penny interviews Rebecca Schoenkopf about politics, life, and feminism. Brian Dillon on hypochondria and books written by or about inventive malingerers, providing firsthand testimony from the world of the worried well.


A review of Invisible Hands: The Making of the Conservative Movement from the New Deal to Reagan by Kim Phillips-Fein. Right Makes Might: How did Conservatives overtake the American political scene? Standing athwart history: Lee Edwards on the political thought of William F. Buckley Jr (and more and more on William F. Buckley Jr.: The Maker of a Movement). The heir to Buckley, Kristol and Neuhaus, Robert George is the new leader of American intellectual conservatism. Lee Haddigan (Delaware): The Importance of Christian Thought for the American Libertarian Movement: Christian Libertarianism, 1950–71. Walter Block (Loyola): Is Milton Friedman a Libertarian? From Liberty, intellectual property has no place in any truly libertarian definition of property rights; serving up minarchy, with a cup of hot coffee on the side — that's what Don Crawford found in a private service organization; if we drop our self-righteousness, we might make some friends for liberty; and bridging the two libertarianisms: What is an impure moral consequentialist? An interview with Jeffrey A. Miron, author of Libertarianism, from A to Z. Escape from America: Mark Ames on the strange and scary billionaires behind the libertarian-inspired sea castles. From The Tablet, a review of Neoconservatism: The Biography of a Movement by Justin Vaisse (and more). James Kirchick on why "neoconservative" is not a Jewish word. A review of Running Commentary: The Contentious Magazine that Transformed the Jewish Left into the Neoconservative Right by Benjamin Balint (and more and more). From NYRM, a profile of The American Conservative. From the Acton Institute, a review of Reappraising the Right by George Nash; and will Tea Parties awaken America’s moral culture?

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