Karl Widerquist (Georgetown) and Grant McCall (Tulane): Prehistoric Myths in Modern Political Philosophy. Mauro Caraccioli (Florida): The Difference that Nature Makes: Empire and Natural History in Contemporary Political Theory. David Hunter Walsh (Rutgers): Fact and Power in the Social Sciences: A Different Argument for the Necessary Role of Political Theory. From the latest issue of Political Concepts, Avital Ronell (NYU): Authority; Andreas Kalyvas (New School): Constituent Power; Jacques Lezra (NYU): Enough; and Richard J. Bernstein (New School): Violence. From the final issue of The Art of Theory, a series of interviews with Elizabeth Anderson, Corey Brettschneider, Michael Walzer, and Bernard Yack. Jeanne L. Schroeder reviews The Rule of the Clan: What an Ancient Form of Social Organization Reveals About the Future of Individual Freedom by Mark S. Weiner. The introduction to The Confidence Trap: A History of Democracy in Crisis from World War I to the Present by David Runciman (and Runciman on the trouble with democracy and democracy’s dual dangers). Is democracy a Western idea? Diego Von Vacano on what we can learn from non-Western political thought about the global potential of democracy. The introduction to Confucian Perfectionism: A Political Philosophy for Modern Times by Joseph Chan. Do political philosophers know that their world is mostly make-believe? Christopher Fear goes down the rabbit hole (and a response).
Justin Fox (WUSTL) and Richard Van Weelden (Chicago): Hoping for the Best, Unprepared for the Worst. Mark Shirk (Maryland): Beyond Pirates, Terrorists, and Mercenaries: Towards a Relational Understanding of Violence and Threat. Philip Stephens on the grab for Greenland: The world’s great powers have the Arctic’s natural resources and trade routes in their sights. Soft-focus time for celebrity offspring: You didn’t have to be the son or daughter of somebody famous to be written about in the New York Times Magazine during 2013, but it helped. Going the distance: David Remnick goes on and off the road with Barack Obama. Witzkrieg: Mark Bryant looks at those elusive masters of Nazi propaganda, the German cartoonists of the Second World War. From TNR, would you feel differently about Snowden, Greenwald, and Assange if you knew what they really thought? Sean Wilentz wonders. Jonathan Chait on how deficit scolds are holding the unemployed hostage. Lydia DePillis on how toilet paper explains the world. From FT, is it OK to do nothing? In our achievement-orientated culture there is a danger of construing as “nothing” any activity without a clear end-product; and should we be more stoic? Rightbloggers continue outreach to women with "Lena Dunham is Ugly" campaign. If you celebrate MLK Day by denouncing affirmative action, yewww might be a conservative. No, Jane Austen was not a game theorist: William Deresiewicz on how using science to explain art is a good way to butcher both.
Erol Akcay (UPenn), John A. Ferejohn (NYU), and James D. Fearon, Joan Roughgarden, and Barry R. Weingast (Stanford): Biological Institutions: The Political Science of Animal Cooperation. From Metapsychology, Robert William Fischer reviews Cooperation and Its Evolution, ed. Kim Sterelny, Richard Joyce, Brett Calcott, and Ben Fraser; and William Simkulet reviews The Connected Self: The Ethics and Governance of the Genetic Individual by Heather Widdows. Is morality hardwired? Laura Miller reviews Just Babies: The Origins of Good and Evil by Paul Bloom (and more). Did God make these babies moral? Paul Bloom on how Intelligent Design's oldest attack on evolution is as popular as ever. Science proves Louis C.K. is right: New studies show the "equality bias" in kids turns out to be a lot like a famous Louis CK joke about kids and toys. Beyond the paleo: Allen Buchanan and Russell Powell on how our morality may be a product of natural selection, but that doesn’t mean it's set in stone. David Dobbs on the social life of genes: Your DNA is not a blueprint — day by day, week by week, your genes are in a conversation with your surroundings; and on how the selfish gene is one of the most successful science metaphors ever invented — unfortunately, it’s wrong (and more). Selfish genes made me do it (and part 2). Survival of the selfish: Kyle O'Shea on natural selection and the myth of altruism. Why can't we all just get along? Robert Wright on the uncertain biological basis of morality. Kathy Benjamin on 5 unfortunate biases hard coded into your DNA.