From Vanity Fair, by the time Marie Colvin got herself smuggled into Syria last winter, to report on the slaughter for the London Sunday Times, she was a legend, for her style as well as her courageous dispatches championing the innocent victims of war — it would be her last story. Mohtadi on the the Shabbiha, terrifying criminals in the service of the Syrian regime. Leilani Clark on the artistic case for abolishing copyright. Ali Steven Farron defends capitalism against Ayn Rand. Odyssey and the lost Spanish treasure: Susan Berfield on the international battle over 17 tons of coins discovered by an American deep-sea treasure hunting company. Todd Lam writes in defence of the blockbuster. Not a messaging problem: Romney doesn’t need a better answer to how are your policies different than Bush’s — he needs policies that are actually different.
Guy F. Shroyer (UDC): Hegemony, Nationalism and Doxa: A Social Semiotic Analysis. The Yale Grand Strategy Seminar: Thomas Meaney and Stephen Wertheim review George F. Kennan: An American Life by John Lewis Gaddis, Strategies of Containment: A Critical Appraisal of American National Security Policy During the Cold War by John Lewis Gaddis, and Grand Strategies: Literature, Statecraft, and World Order by Charles Hill. In October 1962, Kennedy confronted both the Cuban missile crisis and a war between China and India; though Cuba got more attention then and now, that Asian crisis still holds valuable diplomatic lessons. The world that America built: A review essay on what a planet without US leadership would look like. Anne-Marie Slaughter on 21st century foreign policy. Failure is an option: Does history forecast disaster for the United States? No politician will admit that the United States is no longer number one, but other nations do a lot of things better — and we need to learn from them.
From the latest issue of the New York Review of Magazines, a profile of Jeremy Leslie, the man behind magCulture; keeping us honest — looking back and ahead with three editors of CJR; a look at 10 magazine articles that shook the world; are magazines the new Magic 8 Ball? Definitely yes; and what magazines inspired you? Five editors answer. Why capitalism has an image problem: Charles Murray examines the cloud now hanging over American business — and what today's capitalists can do about it. Jason Hickel on how Occupy activists fell in love with their own radical horizontalism and fetishized physical occupation. The Supreme Court has likely hastened the day when the federal government takes over Medicaid. The cultural industry is on life support; without money from Big Business, journalism, the arts, and academia are not sustainable.
Stephen LeDrew (York): The Evolution of Atheism: Scientific and Humanistic Approaches. From IEET, will life extension mean the end of religion? It’s a simple but very scary concept — that we live in an “Existential Atheistic Nihilist” world and universe. One of the selling points of religion is that it offers hope in a heartless world; does that mean those without religion are also without hope? A review of The Joy of Secularism: 11 Essays for How We Live Now by George Levine. An interview with Greta Christina, author of Why Are You Atheists So Angry? 99 Things That Piss off the Godless. If there is a God, then anything is permitted. What did Nietzsche mean by the death of God? Benjamen Walker and guests explore the legacy of the German philosopher's statement (and more and more and more). From Secular Web, Michael D. Reynolds on how Christianity has been destroyed. The Christian right, radical Islamists, and secular leftists agree: Sam Harris is America’s most dangerous man. A review of Difficult Atheism: Post-Theological Thinking in Alain Badiou, Jean-Luc Nancy and Quentin Meillassoux by Christopher Watkin.
John Finnis (Oxford): What is the Philosophy of Law? Brian Leiter (Chicago): Legal Realisms, Old and New. Guyora Binder (Buffalo): Critical Legal Studies. Marco Jimenez (Stetson): Towards a Borgean Theory of Constitutional Interpretation. Ian C. Bartrum (UNLV): Constitutional Value Judgments and Interpretive Theory Choice. Keith E. Whittington (Princeton): Is Originalism Too Conservative? Mary Ziegler (Saint Louis): Grassroots Originalism: Rethinking the Politics of Judicial Philosophy. Eric J. Miller (SLU): Indecisive Reasons for Action: Socrates, Not Hercules, as Judicial Ideal. Leo Katz on his book Why the Law Is So Perverse. A review of Brian Tamanaha's Beyond the Formalist-Realist Divide: The Role of Politics in Judging. From 3:AM, an interview with Andrei Marmor, a fo rizzle legal philosopher; and Meir Dan-Cohen is a hard-core Harvard-tough philosopher of law. After 49 years of service to Harvard Law School, Frank I. Michelman retires in order to devote more time to his writing; in the Harvard Law Review, several scholars contribute to a tribute in his honor (and more by Vlad Perju).
A new issue of Air and Space magazine is out. From n+1, a review of Rabid: A Cultural History of the World’s Most Diabolical Virus by Bill Wasik and Monica Murphy. Old polymaths never die: Adrian Wooldridge explores the unstoppable legacies of Isaiah Berlin and Hugh Trevor-Roper. Destroying the commons: Noam Chomsky on how the Magna Carta became a minor carta. A review of Getting It Wrong: How Faulty Monetary Statistics Undermine the Fed, the Financial System, and the Economy by William A. Barnett. The burning house: What people would take if the house was on fire. When did judges become the ultimate arbiters of art? From h+, John Niman on robot sex and companionship. Faith, hope, and Singularity — entering the Matrix with New York’s futurist set: It's the end of the world as we know it, and they feel fine.
Mark McGlashan (Lancaster): The Branding of European Nationalism: Perpetuation and Novelty in Racist Symbolism. Vidhya Ramalingam (Oxford): The Sweden Democrats: Anti-Immigration Politics under the Stigma of Racism. Robert A. Kahn (St. Thomas): Who’s the Fascist? Uses of the Nazi Past at the Geert Wilders Trial. Sean Hanley (UCL): Getting the Right Right: Redefining the Centre-Right In Post-Communist Europe. A review of Mapping Extreme Right Ideology: An Empirical Geography of the European Extreme Right by Sarah Harrison and Michael Bruter. "Is he coming? Is he? Oh God, I think he is": One year ago, Anders Behring appeared on the beach of a youth summer camp in Norway; as told by the survivors, these are the beat-by-beat horrors of those terrifying 198 minutes. At the moment of the Macedonian nation's greatest victory, independence, "the name issue became the new symbol of our defeat"; predictably enough, those in Macedonia to benefit were the nationalist Right, thus confirming Greek fears.
Athena Mutua (SUNY-Buffalo): The Multidimensional Turn: Revisiting Progressive Black Masculinities in Multidimensional Masculinities and Law: Feminist Theory Meets Critical Race Theory. Peter K. Westen (Michigan): Why the Paradox of Blackmail Is So Hard to Resolve. From On the Commons, Jay Walljasper on the rise and fall and rise of great public spaces. What grounds do you possess for supposing that other humans (including even me) aren’t zombies?: Stephen Law on the strange case of the rational dentist. Terror in the Thames: As a goose-eating monster lurks in the waters of London's Olympic Park, Neil Arnold considers a long line of beasts spotted in the capital's great river and tributaries. From Dissent, Lyle Jereny Rubin on James Livingston and the New Intellectuals. What is a sexual image? Russell Blackford investigates.
From LRC, does the past have a future? It turns out h-i-s-t-o-r-y can be spelled many different ways. Perry Anderson reviews Threads and Traces: True False Fictive by Carlo Ginzburg (and more). As the social science model of history has been overtaken by events, biography has grown as a serious discipline; this is welcome, says Jonathan Steinberg: after all, people make history (but not in the circumstances of their choosing). A review of The Future of History by Alun Munslow. From TED, what can mathematics say about history? According to Jean-Baptiste Michel, quite a lot. From The Historical Society, when is it time to stop teaching something? Jonathan Rees wonders. From PhD to BBC: Are academic historians too hungry for fame? A review of Herbert Butterfield: History, Providence, and Skeptical Politics by Kenneth McIntyre. Raiders of the lost archives: Although progress has many advantages, John Sutherland laments the end of the scholar-adventurer and the thrill of discovery amid dusty, uncatalogued manuscripts. And the worst book of history is.
Matthew D. Adler (Duke): Happiness Surveys and Public Policy: What’s the Use? From Perspectives on Federalism, a special issue on Exploring Subnational Constitutionalism. We are witnessing the triumph of economic logic over the world of insight and contemplation. Here comes Mario Draghi to save Europe, right? Matthew Yglesias on the myth of "Europe" in American politics. Are you sure that’s true? Truth Goggles tackles fishy claims at the moment of consumption. Doctor’s orders: Vibrators and other sex toys are—no pun intended—big business, and nobody in the United States makes more of them than the father-son team who runs the Valley’s own Doc Johnson. Nicholas De Villiers on the amicable return of Roland Barthes. The Oldie, a magazine they said would never last, celebrates its 20th anniversary. Timothy McGettigan on Ayn Rand, the blinkered visionary.