From Transforming Cultures, a special issue on Music and the Production of Place. From Open Letters Monthly, a special section on music. Silence is golden: How a pause can be the most devastating effect in music. A review of George Gershwin by Walter Rimler. A review of Some Liked It Hot: Jazz Women in Film and Television, 1928-1959 by Kristin A. McGee. A review of A Windfall of Musicians: Hitler's Emigres and Exiles in Southern California by Dorothy Lamb Crawford. More and more on Leonard Bernstein: The Political Life of an American Musician by Barry Seldes. A review of Sound Commitments: Avant-Garde Music and the Sixties. P.J. O'Rourke reviews books on Woodstock. A review of Book of Rhymes: The Poetics of Hip Hop by Adam Bradley. More on Greg Kot’s Ripped: How the Wired Generation Revolutionized Music. Jay Diamond on the realization that there is indeed a new world order in music. Rock music and novel-writing are both forms of storytelling; songs are snapshots compared to the grand panorama of a novel but in the hands of the best lyricists they can be little narrative jewels. A review of Antithetical Arts: On the Ancient Quarrel between Literature and Music by Peter Kivy. Behold the Man: Friedrich Nietzsche, composer. A review of books on Joseph Haydn. Opera’s coolest soprano: Danielle de Niese isn’t above flexing her voice to the beat of Beyonce. Is the opera house the last safe place to practice the pursuit of style?

From Daedalus, Jason Puskar (Wisconsin): Risking Ralph Ellison. Is there a scientific way to measure how bad a fart smells? From InTheFray, a special issue on stories of beginnings. From Fast Company, a look at how Jane Fonda became the face of the aging adult social media world. Local LGBT papers are a vital part of our community, and they have played a major role in the development of that community — if only they were more inclusive. Could cannon balls from the early 19th century sink warships? An outrageous anti-Semitic article in a Swedish newspaper caused a diplomatic row with Israel, but what's really behind the sturm-und-drang? Incitement to murder: How Israel should fight the Swedish blood libel (and more). Why do so many self-help books sound the same? What's mine is yours: When should firms be required to share their intellectual property with rivals? From The New Yorker, Alexandra Jacobs on Zappos, the online shoe shopping utopia. Crossing the tan line: We work hard to cover our breasts and penises — and then summer comes along. With the internet dominated by free reference sites, what's the Encyclopaedia Britannica's appeal? A review of I Hate People!: Kick Loose from the Overbearing and Underhanded Jerks at Work and Get What You Want Out of Your Job by Jonathan Littman. David Weigel on how the far-right site WorldNetDaily is gaining influence in the Obama Era (and more and more and more on The Next Right vs. the current right).

From Truow, an article on the fluctuating meaning of the term "Calvinistic" in the Netherlands. An article on Latvia as a model of economic malaise. A review of The Secret Life of France by Lucy Wadham. Alain de Botton on the pleasures of French Guiana (and more). Chile's vast and barren Atacama Desert was once plundered for its mineral riches; as Ivan Semeniuk discovers, today it's rich in a completely different kind of resource: telescopes. Letter from Singapore: Axel Gelfert reports from where the ivory tower meets the crystal palace. Japan's August election represented a political revolution, but how effective will the country's new government be? A current of anti-Chinese xenophobia has fueled the rise of an unlikely neo-Nazi movement: Why swastikas and racist dogma have taken hold in Mongolia. Fictional sovereignties: Today’s upsurge of micro-nationalism is not just a consequence of the revolt against empires — it is also a revolt against globalization. A review of Whatever Happened to Tanganyika?: The Place Names that History Left Behind by Harry Campbell. The Mzungu Thing: Many foreigners have a complicated relationship to Africa's woes — we want to help, but we also take pleasure in Africa as it is. An article on the growing specter of Africa without wildlife. Mount Bosavi, home to a host of newly discovered wildlife in Papua New Guinea, could hardly be more remote — so how did the scientists find their way there? An article on Tristan da Cunha, the world's loneliest island.

A review of The Social Amoebae: The Biology of Cellular Slime Molds by John Tyler Bonner. Simon Schama reviews books on the collective societies and epic micro-universes occupied by insects. What do George W. Bush, Roy Orbison and Darth Vader have in common? All three have had new beetle species named after them. A review of The Dangerous World of Butterflies: The Startling Subculture of Criminals, Collectors, and Conservationists by Peter Laufer. Pigeons have long been maligned in favour of fancier fowl; don't they now deserve a reprieve? From Seed, six experts discuss the global fisheries crisis and what it will take to make fish stocks bounce back. A look at how "hippy" monkey muriqui is a killer when starved of sex. A review of The Hedgehog's Dilemma: A Tale of Obsession, Nostalgia, and the World's Most Charming Mammal by Hugh Warwick. A review of Dogs: History, Myth, Art by Catherine Johns. Why do we treat dogs and pigs so differently? The answer has to do with simple, mutual obligation. A review of Why Animal Suffering Matters: Philosophy, Theology, and Practical Ethics by Andrew Linzey. A review of The Wauchula Woods Accord: Toward a New Understanding of Animals by Charles Siebert (and more). Should species be relocated to prevent extinction? Here's a slide show of 10 ugly animals that need help, too. Constance Casey profiles the most disgusting animals you're ever likely to meet. An article on Japan as a nation of animal lovers — as pets or when they're on a plate. Here are the 6 most frequently quoted bullshit animal facts.