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Omnivore

The twist ending

Stephen McLeod (Liverpool): Two Philosophies of Needs. Ryan Engley (URI): The Greatest Trick the Devil Ever Played: Desire, Drive, and the Twist Ending. Nan Aron on fighting back against the fine print: Forced arbitration is a rigged game, but a new rule could help consumers. James Hohmann on how Russian meddling in U.S. election backfiring on Putin, hurting Trump. Trevor Timm on some questions for those who are cheering Gawker’s demise. Does fiction actually make us more empathetic? Miguel


Paper Trail

Vinson Cunningham writes on the soon-to-open National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC, and the century-long “bureaucratic slog” required to make it happen. Founding director Lonnie Bunch has been at work on the project since 2005. His unconventional techniques included Antiques Roadshow–style acquisitions, but his vision for the building might be

Syllabi

Reforming the Racist Criminal Justice System

John MiddletonThroughout the Democratic primaries, police brutality and systematic discrimination in the criminal justice system have become critical campaign issues, due in large part to the unrelenting pressure

Daily Review

The Transmigration of Bodies

“A scurvy thirst awoke him,” begins Lisa Dillman’s translation of Yuri Herrera’s new novel, The Transmigration of Bodies, as though someone had changed her settings to “English (Pirate).” It’s a deliberately confusing effect. Herrera’s short novels observe the

Interviews

Jesmyn Ward

James Baldwin's 1963 work, The Fire Next Time, with its forward-glancing title, was the call; The Fire This Time, a collection of essays and poems edited by Jesmyn Ward, is the response. Featuring the work of contemporary, mostly black writers, it finds a way to touch on many subjects.

Essay

"A Ted Hughes Bestiary" edited by Alice Oswald

David Biespiel

Among the mysteries of the strange animals that appear in A Ted Hughes Bestiary—a compilation edited by poet Alice Oswald of his writing about animals real and invented—is how often these creatures strike me as anything but strange. Taking one of his great plunges into the waterways—those “legendary” depths “deep as England”—he encounters an otter with a “round head like a tomcat,” or a pike with its “sag belly."

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