James Patterson Inc.: Jonathan Mahler on how a genre writer has transformed book publishing. Are books a charity case?: The Times of London reveals an unsettling truth of literary culture — It's insulated from the marketplace. From TNR, a review of The Case for Books: Past, Present, and Future by Robert Darnton (and more). A review of The Late Age of Print: Everyday Book Culture from Consumerism to Control by Ted Striphas. A review of A Better Pencil: Readers, Writers, and the Digital Revolution by Dennis Baron. The future of e-books is one of the most contentious subjects in technology at the moment. Confessions of a Book Pirate: Who are the people downloading these books, how are they doing it, and where is it happening? Meet the iPad, and all of its ready-made competition. A look at 5 ways the Apple iPad could change e-books and the war over e-pricing (and more and more and more and more on "what book lovers need to know") and six industries Apple's Tablet could shake up. Will Apple’s iPad make Kindles as obsolete as books? (and more) Technology is not the sworn enemy of literature; still, the collision of technology and literature in this case may well prove explosive. How will digital technologies change our culture in the years to come?: A series on learning and literacy in the digital age, including Nicholas Carr on why how we read matters. Clive Thompson |inprint/01605/5004|reviews| Always On: Language in an Online and Mobile World by Naomi Baron and Txtng: the gr8 db8_ by David Crystal. Does Google Book Search destroy culture? Chris Thompson investigates. For the love of culture: Lawrence Lessig on Google, copyright, and our future.
A new issue of Atlantis: Journal of the Spanish Association of Anglo-American Studies is out. Peter Green (Texas): Possession and Pneuma: The Essential Nature of the Delphic Oracle. Mr. Cool Gets Hot: As president, Obama has walked the walk — but now, with his agenda endangered, he has to learn to talk the talk; and the tea party is now in a big tent. The Many Lives of Count Dracula: How Bram Stoker's Count created the template for modern vampires. From First Things, Irving Louis Horowitz on how Hannah Arendt’s life was a testimonial to the open transparencies of the Jewish and American traditions and to the disastrous fall from grace of German liberalism. The Return of the Neocons: Neoconservatism was once deemed dead, but it persists, not just as the de facto foreign-policy plank of the Republican Party but, its proponents assert, in Obama's unapologetic embrace of American military might. A review of Tattoo Machine: Tall Tales, True Stories, and My Life in Ink by Jeff Johnson. Twittering Fools: Edward Docx is not interested in what the public thinks — nobody is, not even the public. Michael Linden on how to spot a deficit peacock: Four ways to tell when someone isn't serious about the deficit. From Hippie to Hip: Fashion designers are filling catwalks from New York to Los Angeles and Paris to Milan with fresh looks that make sustainability sexy. The GOP is about to unleash an ungodly number of Contracts With America. Uncovering secrets of the Sphinx: After decades of research, American archaeologist Mark Lehner has some answers about the mysteries of the Egyptian colossus.
Mary A. Kizima (BSU) and Sergey A. Kizima (APA): The Development of Business Styles in Post-Soviet Russia and Belarus. The Kremlin Kowtow: Why have Western leaders and intellectuals gone soft on Russia's autocracy? How did Russia’s richest oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky become the last best hope of its human rights campaigners? Death in Detention: An article on Russia's prison scandal. From Cross Currents, why Russians should not read Sartre, or the search for God in two extremities of Europe. The “Orthodox resurgence” taking place in Russia may have as much to do with nationalism as with religious zeal. Stalin's Revival: Russia wrestles with rehabilitating its great Soviet-era wartime leader and homicidal maniac. Officials from Moscow's Committee for Monumental Arts recently discussed plans to remove what is the only monument of Karl Marx in the city, putting forward a variety of arguments. Can Belarus' communism-lite go on? Minsk might give the impression of an idealized Soviet Union, but the recession has revealed cracks in Belarus' "market socialism". Alexander Lukashenko has often been referred to as Europe's last dictator— all of a sudden, though, he seems to be on a push to rapidly liberalize Belarus' economy and turn it into a high-tech paradise. A Belarusian novel encourages citizens to question their own role in perpetuating the regime that governs them; the authorities’ response suggests it has touched a nerve. Your native tongue is a crime against the state: Observations in Belarus, the last former-Soviet police state. An article on Russia's energy feud with Belarus: Will Kazakhs step in?
A profile of Jim DeMint, the loneliest wingnut in Washington. Filibuster 2.0: A look at how 41 senators control the country without actually filibustering. While pushing the president’s agenda through a nearly dysfunctional Senate, Harry Reid is trying to keep his job. The Great Unalignment: How long can a Democratic majority last in our fast-paced, high-tech political culture? Surveying the wreckage of “Yes, We Can” promise, Todd Purdum argues that it’s still far too early to count Obama out. The failing messenger: John Lloyd on the media's role in Obama's (un)popularity. Blame cable TV: Michael Lind on how hack party consultants came to replace real liberals and conservatives in the 24/7 media universe. An interview with Thomas Frank on how conservatives can get away with blaming Obama for the past decade of conservative failures. Theda Skocpol on how the original New Deal did not happen in the first year, but a prolonged set of struggles — so the Dems must step up to majority governance after the Massachusetts Mess (and more by Todd Gitlin). From Dissent, Eric Rauchway on New Deal denialism. Kevin Mattson reviews From the New Deal to the New Right: Race and the Southern Origins of Modern Conservatism by Joseph Lowndes. A review of The Silent Majority: Suburban Politics in the Sunbelt South by Matthew Lassiter. From New Geography, Joel Kotkin on the War Against Suburbia: Political movements ignore suburbanites at their peril. Independents are not a "vast middle ground": How many damn times must this be said before this most basic of findings — first explicated at length almost 20 years ago — sinks into the heads of pundits? (and more)
Terry Flew (QUT): The Cultural Economy Moment? From The Awl, Katie Baker on why it's okay to feel "preemptively irritated". From New Scientist, an article on five emotions you never knew you had. David O’Neill on how Emily Dickinson’s legendary silence has produced a discordant chorus of speculation and mythmaking. Iran singled out Harvard professor Gene Sharp as a key inspiration for protesters' "velvet coup"; Sharp's manual on nonviolent protest shaped opposition movements in Czechoslovakia and inspired activists in Burma. A Teachable Turnpike Moment: Why it's a good thing the idiots on Jersey Shore are complete and utter idiots. How can MTV follow up Jersey Shore? Massholes. The effects of cattle production: A review of Revolution on the Range: The Rise of a New Ranch in the American West by Courtney White and Beef: The Untold Story of How Milk, Meat, and Muscle Shaped the World by Andrew Rimas and Evan D.G. Fraser. The madness of crowds: Mass delusions and hysterical outbreaks have repeatedly occurred in history, and there's no reason to believe they won't again. A review of The Physiology of Truth: Neuroscience and Human Knowledge by Jean-Pierre Changeux. For the Society for Creative Anachronism, playing with swords is part of a lesson. Disputing taste: Carolyn Korsmeyer implores us to try a different flavour of thinking. From Page to Stage: Mark Chou on what emerges "in between" politics and art in George Packer’s Betrayed. A review of Up and Down Stairs: The History of the Country House Servant by Jeremy Musson.
From The New Yorker, what does the popularity of memoirs tell us about ourselves? A review of Ben Yagoda’s Memoir: A History (and more at Bookforum). It’s probably the case that there is an unconscious sexism afoot in our literary culture, which props up the work of men at the expense of equally worthy books by their female counterparts. The man who rediscovered Africa: How Chinua Achebe's novels captured the soul of a continent. Read 'em and weep: An article on the literary masters of misery who delight in desolation. The first woman to hold the Oxford chair in Poetry and the great-great-great-grand daughter of Charles Darwin, Ruth Padel knows a thing or two about survival. Austrian economics and literary criticism: The preface and first chapter from Literature and the Economics of Liberty: Spontaneous Order in Culture by Paul Cantor. From The Millions, Garth Risk Hallberg on the problem with prizes (or, who cares about the International Booker?). The Unstoppable Cult of Jane Eyre: Readers can't seem to get enough of their favorite Victorian heroine (and more). The first chapter from Jane Austen For Dummies by Joan Elizabeth Klingel Ray. For the first time, The Golden Calf by Ilya Ilf and Evgeny Petrov, the saga of the irrepressible Ostap Bender, a trickster and individualist at odds with the stultifying collective atmosphere, is available in English. Edgar Allan Poe is 200: All you need to know about the macabre master, from The Baltimore Sun (and more). As Martin Amis and Ian McEwan bring out new books, Alex Clark asks: have the headline-grabbing novelists lived up to their early promise? (and more)
Seamus P. MacSuibhne (UC): What makes “a new mental illness”?: The cases of solastalgia and hubris syndrome. An article on how translators struggle to prove their academic bona fides. Eric Banks reviews Kermode's Concerning E.M. Forster (and more and more). What, if anything, do the philosophical and political uses of the term "pragmatism" have to do with one another? What makes a man take credit for a crime he didn’t commit? Peter Savodnik on the curious case of an American soldier who sent himself to a Russian prison. The stuff of nightmares: Sleep paralysis creates a very real waking nightmare — conjuring up images of aliens and evil entities — but it's all a trick of the mind. A review of The Sixties by Jenny Diski. From Cato Unbound, Timothy Sandefur on four problems with spontaneous order. Why we do the things we do: George Scialabba reviews The Predictioneer's Game: Using the Logic of Brazen Self-Interest to See and Shape the Future by Bruce Bueno de Mesquita, Bozo Sapiens: Why to Err Is Human by Michael Kaplan and Ellen Kaplan, and The Perfect Swarm: The Science of Complexity in Everyday Life by Len Fisher. Could a remote African people have gained esoteric knowledge about the sky without having telescopes? PINK: A shockingly butch cultural history of the world's prissiest colour. Devin McKinney on Supernatural Nonfiction: A list of exemplary books that treat the otherworldly — ghosts, monsters, other fantastic phenomena — as truth. Crunch Time: Alexandra Penney and others sell downturn tales. Movie Misquotations: Famous cinematic lines that weren’t actually spoken.
The latest issue of World Policy Journal is free, including a special section on water wars. A review of Water by Steven Solomon (and more). From the Brown Journal of World Affairs, a special section on innovations in global health (reg. req.). A review of Bioterror in the 21st Century: Emerging Threats in a New Global Environment by Daniel Gerstein. A Lloyd's of Haradheere: Or, how Somali pirates are imitating the West through adventure capitalism. The return to the Other: A review essay in search of new ontologies of international relations. Jack Goldstone (George Mason): The New Population Bomb: The Four Mega Trends That Will Change the World. Can we talk about overpopulation? As numbers soar, scholars revisit a thorny debate. It might be better for the environment to divvy up territories in Antarctica rather than abide by the toothless Antarctic Treaty. Is the Arctic the next "hot spot" of international relations or a region of cooperation? (and more) Laugh if you want world peace: Framing international conflicts as comedies could help to resolve them. From MSF, a look at the top ten humanitarian crises of 2009. From Conflict & Communication, Xiufang Li and Naren Chitty (Macquarie): Reframing National Image. From Public Diplomacy, an article on nation "branding": Propaganda or statecraft? From Good, here are five lesser-known countries that changed the world in 2009. What is it like living on the tiny south Atlantic island of St Helena, one of the most isolated settlements on the planet? Limbo World: They start by acting like real countries, then hope to become them. A menagerie of monikers: Most labels are misleading, sometimes grossly so.
From Communio, a special issue on natural law; and Peter Candler (Baylor): The Logic of Christian Humanism. Is every Pontiff a saint? With Pius XII (controversial) and John Paul II (not very) being fitted for halos, the question of a rush to canonization arises. The first chapter from John Paul II For Dummies. From the Catholic Social Science Review, a review of The Way of Life: John Paul II and the Challenge of Liberal Modernity by Carson Holloway; a review of Karol Wojtyla’s Philosophical Legacy; and a review of Ratzinger’s Faith: The Theology of Pope Benedict XVI by Tracey Rowland. Bernard-Henri Levy, writes in defense of Benedict XVI: It is time to put an end to the disingenuousness — the bias, in a word — and the disinformation (and more). John Allen reviews What Happened at Vatican II by John W. O’Malley. A review of John Allen’s The Future Church: How Ten Trends Are Revolutionizing the Catholic Church. As the flame of Catholic dissent dies out, where are the intellectual heirs to a generation of rebels? Mark Shea on the paradox of the neo-Catholic traditionalist. From CT, a review of Chesterton and the Romance of Orthodoxy: The Making of GKC 1874-1908 by William Oddie (and a look at how GKC subverts the subversives). An interview on the possible beatification of G.K. Chesterton. The first chapter from The Difference God Makes: A Catholic Vision of Faith, Communion, and Culture by Francis Eugene Cardinal George. Once you are already Catholic, the Church does in fact answer some questions you may need to ask. What it means to be Catholic: The first chapter from Catholicism For Dummies by John Trigilio and Kenneth Brighenti.
The removal of George W. Bush was not enough to cure what ails us. Thomas Edsall on how realignment was just an illusion. EJ Dionne on Obama's big mistake: Trying to bring the country together. Simon Schama on why Obama should play to populism. David Brooks on the populist addiction. Sam Tanenhaus on making sense of the new political anger. Right-wing flame war: Why are conservatives so freaked out by a blog called Little Green Footballs? Ben McGrath on the rise of Tea Party activism. Unify the new American tea party? An attempt to solidify the tea party movement with a convention is now looking like it could backfire. How to avoid another Waco: Keeping the peace in the 10-year standoff with the armed family compound of John Joe Gray. The Montana group Celebrating Conservatism demands local leaders boot Feds, form militia, protect guns. A very American coup: Coming soon to a hometown near you. A review of David Neiwert's The Eliminationists: How Hate Talk Racialized the American Right. From HNN, a new symposium on Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism, including an introduction by David Neiwert and contributions by Robert Paxton, Roger Griffin, Matthew Feldman, Chip Berlet and Michael Ledeen (and more). From Socialism and Democracy, a special issue (2008) on US fascism, including Steve Martinot (SFSU): The Question of Fascism in the United States; Jonathan Scott (BMCC): Why Fascism When They Have White Supremacy?; and Douglas Greene on The Bourgeois Origins of Fascist Repression: On Robert Paxton’s The Anatomy of Fascism. From Studies in Social Justice, Mark Neocleous (Brunel): The Fascist Moment: Security, Exclusion, Extermination. David Art on what to read on fascism. It is Facebook for the fascist set, and the typical profiles reveal expected tastes.