Paul Daniels (Melbourne): Kant on the Beautiful: The Interest in Disinterestedness. From Consciousness, Literature and the Arts, Alexey Aliev (Moscow State): The Intentional-Attributive Definition of Art; Robert Pepperell (Wales): The Conscious Act of Looking at a Painting; Justin Harmon (Houston): What Is It Like to Be Mysterious, Alienated, and Wildly Rich through Less Than Savory Means? Phenomenal Consciousness and Aesthetic Experience. A review of Aesthetics of Anxiety by Ruth Ronen. Do we take art a little too seriously? Marcus Westbury wants to know. From Amsterdam Law Forum, should we want art to be transgressing moral norms? A tool to deceive and slaughter: A piece of obtuse contemporary art captures the zeitgeist — sort of. From e-flux, a two issues on the theme, “What is Contemporary Art?”, including an essay on contemporaneity as points of connection; and take the money and run: Can political and socio-critical art “survive”? From Australian Humanities Review, a special section on The Art of the Real. From the Journal for Learning Through the Arts, a special issue on arts and technology. An interview with Sarah Thornton, author of Seven Days in the Art World (and more at Bookforum). A review of Loot: The Battle over the Stolen Treasures of the Ancient World by Sharon Waxman and Who Owns Antiquity? Museums and the Battle over Our Ancient Heritage by James Cuno. From Arion, Paul Barolsky (Virginia): Homer and the Poetic Origins of Art History. From TNR, Jed Pearl on why art should never be a slave to the market: A call to arms. A look at the ten most expensive pieces of art ever sold. As they await their big break, today's young artists are having to make ends meet with day jobs — how are they coping?

A new issue of the Journal of Aesthetics & Protest is out. Krzysztof Koscinski (AMU): Current Status and Future Directions of Research on Facial Attractiveness. The New Deal in Reverse: How the Obama Administration ended up where Franklin Roosevelt began. Hearts actually can break: Broken-heart syndrome mimics a heart attack but is brought on by acute emotion or physical trauma. An interview with Edward N. Luttwak, author of The Grand Strategy of the Byzantine Empire (and more). Why bother with the Olympics? Obscure, unpopular sports will never change the world. Torture tales: If the leftwing mass media continues to ignore political thrillers, this important means of shaping the public debate on torture and other critical issues will remain the exclusive weapon of the Glenn Becks of the world. A Tale of Two Cities: The Vancouver you see, and the one you don’t. A truly ethical foreign policy: Britain has no right to demand money back from Iceland; in fact, we should give them cash. An interview with Aleksandar Hemon on books on man’s inhumanity to man. An interview with Douglas Schoen, author of The Political Fix: Changing the Game of American Democracy from the Grass Roots to the White House. Eight spin-offs from space: Space is a complicated and expensive place to get to, that's why the technology the space program produces is so spectacular. NASA's David Morrison answers the top 20 questions about 2012 (and more). That Other War: Reagan-era drug war rhetoric is still with us, and so is the accompanying collateral damage.

Maciej Henneberg (Adelaide): Two Interpretations of Human Evolution: Essentialism and Darwinism. From Archeology, an interview with Richard Leakey on family and great discoveries. From American Scientist, a review of The Link: Uncovering Our Earliest Ancestor by Colin Tudge; a look at how Ardi redefines the branch between apes and hominins; and a review of Human: The Science Behind What Makes Us Unique by Michael Gazzaniga. New genetic findings suggest that early humans living about one million years ago were extremely close to extinction, and that the last Neanderthals died out 37,000 years ago south of the Cantabro-Pyrenean mountain chain. Should we clone Neanderthals? An article on the scientific, legal, and ethical obstacles. Is Homo floresiensis really that strange? Two bursts of human innovation in southern Africa during the Middle Stone Age may be linked to population growth and early migration off the continent. For the first time researchers have sequenced an ancient human genome (and more). The ancient population that gave rise to modern humans may have been nearly twice as genetically diverse than humans today. If we don't develop new genetic interventions, then the populations of industrialized societies will experience a substantial reduction in human fitness due to the rise of deleterious-mutation accumulation. Controlling your genes: The promise and the hype of changing your DNA through behavior (and a look at the 10 most destructive human behaviors). People may not be quite the humans they think they are, or so suggests new research showing that the human genome is part bornavirus. Immunology needs a major overhaul to remain relevant — it's time for a study of the immune system on a grand scale, something akin to the Human Genome Project.

Deane-Peter Baker (USNA) and James Pattison (Manchester): The Principled Case for Employing Private Military and Security Companies in Humanitarian Interventions and Peacekeeping. The draft version of the American Psychiatric Association's DSM 5, the psychiatric "bible" that defines the revised criteria for diagnosing mental illness, has finally been published. All this consensus around the need for a better discussion is encouraging, but “Presidential Question Time” might prove to be just another way to get nothing done. A study suggests 28 to 40-year-olds don't plan for the future because they prefer to reminisce about past times, yet experts say nostalgia can give meaning to our seemingly dull lives. In the quest for bike-friendly cities, are snobby cyclists their own worst enemies? The Guardian celebrates Britain's niche magazines. It would be easy — too easy — to toss off Sloth as a sin that only afflicted the lazy. An interview with Ben Macintyre on books on spies. The Vancouver Winter Olympics has eroded Canadian law and democracy, and worsened relations with Canada’s indigenous peoples. Is it possible to pinpoint the world’s best cheese? Dante's Inferno proves it: Here are 10 literary classics that should be videogames. Alisa Leonard on how Facebook would like to send a friendly reminder that at the end of the day, they’ve still got your data by the proverbial balls. There are new clues why autistic people don't want hugs. This is the ammunition to fire at Satan: Like a teasing teenager, we can point at Lucifer and say, “Loser! You were hoist with your own petard!”

Herb Gamberg (Dalhousie): On Political Economy and Political Theory. From Swans, Michael Doliner on the contradictions of capitalism. Astra Taylor on how to break capital's unrelenting stranglehold over us. A review of Zombie Capitalism: Global Crisis and the Relevance of Marx by Chris Harman. Whatever ideology defines the future of the global economy, it won’t be American-style neo-liberalism. Economist Richard Norgaard decries the gospel of endless growth. Is the World Social Forum a sustainable model? Naomi Klein on how corporate branding has taken over America. Joseph Heath set out to write about economics for the left; now he's defending Capitalism — sort of. The left is the main hope against xenophobic, securitised, apocalyptic barbarism — we should expect radical change. Does a major economic crisis always and inevitably benefit the Left? A review of Build it Now: Socialism for the Twenty-First Century by Michael Lebowitz. Michael Barker on taking strong action for capitalist-led environmental destruction. John Bellamy Foster the age of monopoly-finance capital and on ecological revolution: "In reality, capitalism can be defined as a system of unsustainable development". Through a reappraisal of 20th century anti-capitalist thought, Benjamin Noys urges us to critically re-think how an apocalyptic tone operates within radical analyses of the current crisis. A review of The Neo-Liberal State by Raymond Plant. The Left should expose the fakery of Keynesians who ignore Keynes’ real ideas and the Right’s politically motivated identity fraud. The making of neo-liberalism: A review of The Road from Mont Pelerin: The Making of the Neoliberal Thought Collective by Philip Mirowski and Invisible Hands: The Making of the Conservative Movement from the New Deal to Reagan by Kim Phillips-Fein. William Niskanen on the undemanding ethics of capitalism. Feeble Critiques: Jagdish Bhagwati on capitalism's petty detractors.