The first issue of Strategies of Critique is out. From Left Curve, An interview with Steven Ford Brown on what academia doesn't want you to know about the creative writing industry. Intellectuals as castrators of meaning: An interview with Rene Girard. From BBC Magazine, things aren't what they used to be, and thank goodness for that; and towns and cities are designed primarily for men, not women — so what's the difference? From New Matilda, a man drought is a tricky problem, because the solutions we apply to other types of drought don't apply. From Lost, a look back at the losers of American presidential elections. Cass Sunstein on how Obama's views aren't easy to characterize, so stop trying already. Michael Kinsley on how Sarah Palin made the GOP change its mind about presidential qualifications. More on Grand New Party by Ross Douthat and Reihan Salam. Offered perpetually to the Congress, would the so-called Christian Amendment really achieve its objectives? Of all moral issues, war is perhaps the most difficult, and most important; what would a specifically libertarian response to this issue be? From Prospect, African states have arbitrary borders and unsuitable systems of "winner-takes-all" electoral democracy — it is time to develop an African form of democracy; and bullfighting is seen by many as cruel, but can aesthetics justify the suffering of the animal?

From Carnegie Ethics, Devin Stewart on the myth of the nation-state (and responses). An interview with Michael Hudson, author of Super Imperialism: The Economic Strategy of American Empire. An interview with Paul Kennedy, a man still unafraid of tackling the grand strategies of empire and war; and contrary to expectations, it seems that we have succeeded in developing forms of society in which doing the hokey-cokey is what it's all about. A review of Fascism and Democracy in the Human Mind: A Bridge between Mind and Society by I. W. Charny. A review of Executive Orders and the Modern Presidency: Legislating from the Oval Office by Adam Warber. Democracy and accountability: A look at the perverse effects of term limits. Is history siding with Obama’s economic plan? Alan Blinder reviews Unequal Democracy by Larry Bartels. Hepatitis B and missing women: An article on the "morality tale" involving Robert Barro, Steven Levitt, Amartya Sen and Emily Oster. A review of Natural Goodness by Philippa Foot. From NYRB, an article on Georgia and the balance of power; and a review of books on the price of being black. Todd Gitlin on the Left, lost in the politics of identity. From Harp & Altar, sliver of a sliver: A review of Red Shifting by Aleksandr Skidan. A review of The World in Six Songs: How the Musical Brain Created Human Nature by Daniel J. Levitin.

From The New Yorker, can the Democrats get a foothold on the religious vote? Peter J. Boyer investigates; and Steve Coll on David Petraeus, the pressures of politics, and the road out of Iraq. From Studies in Language and Capitalism, Andrew Sola (Maryland): The Pocket Idiot’s Guide to War-Profiteering in Iraq; and Lisa Glebatis Perks (UT-Austin): The Nouveau Reach: Ideologies of Class and Consumerism in Reality-Based Television. From Luna Park, an essay on the future of lit (mags); an article on how to start a war: McSweeney's 26; and Travis Kurowski on the last movement literary magazine: n+1. From The Liberal, an article on Barack Obama and the Idea of America. From First Things, Joseph Bottum on the death of Protestant America: A political theory of the Protestant mainline. A review of Gay Marriage: For Better or for Worse? What We've Learned from the Evidence by William N. Eskridge Jr. and Darren R. Spedale. Martin Amis on terrorism's new structure. Radovan Karadzic has been caught, but the war is not over yet for the heirs of Yugoslavia's war criminals. A futurologist says . In defense of the beta blocker: Is this a performance drug that could actually increase the fairness of Olympic contests? From IHE, should American Politics be abolished (as a field)? Martha Nussbaum reviews On Religious Liberty: Selections From the Works of Roger Williams.