From Aeon, we picture ancient Britain as a land of enchanted forests, but that’s a fantasy: axes have been ringing for a very long time. The Magna Carta is considered by many to represent the foundation of democracy, but has its importance been exaggerated? British universities have a lot to learn about philanthropy — not least how to restrain its academic influence. Jon Kelly on why British police don’t have guns. Cita Stelzer reviews Serving Victoria: Life in the Royal Household by Kate Hubbard. SJD Green reviews Our Church by Roger Scruton. More people may believe in an afterlife than believe in God. Penelope J. Corfield proposes a new and inclusive long-span history course — the Peopling of Britain — to stimulate a renewed interest in the subject among the nation’s secondary school students. Ross McKibbin writes in defence of British universities. Filled with treasures from around the globe and across the ages, England's university museums are as varied as their funding, but those of Oxford and Cambridge still take the lion's share of Hefce cash. Louis Fisher reviews Habeas Corpus: From England to Empire by Paul D. Halliday.

A new issue of the Journal of Conflictology is out. Abdolkarim Sadrieh and Marina Schroder (Magdeburg): The Desire to Influence Others. From Next Left Notes, Howard Machtinger on the impossibility of change and its other possibilities. Mattia Riccardi reviews The Soul of Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil by Maudemarie Clark and David Dudrick. Igor Stramignoni reviews Anti-Nietzsche by Malcolm Bull. Scott F. Aikin and Robert B. Talisse on reading weird books in public. Tim Dickinson on the Obama campaign's real heroes: Meet 10 key operatives who got the president re-elected. David Warsh on understanding the history of technological change. Maxwell Woods interviews Thomas Friese on translating Ernst Junger's The Adventurous Heart: Figures and Capriccios. Rachel Sagner Buurma reviews The Art of the Epigraph: How Great Books Begin. Gavin McInnes on 10 facts about Brooklyn natives. Culture is not a crime: Paul M. Davis on 10 years of Creative Commons. Scott McLemee reviews Ulrich Beck’s Twenty Observations on a World in Turmoil. Why David beat Goliath: Malcolm Gladwell says underdogs should play to their strengths.

Linda C. McClain (BU): Nature, Culture, and Social Engineering: Reflections on Evolution and Equality. Olle Folke (Columbia) and Johanna Karin Rickne (IFN): Female Representation but Male Rule? Party Competition and the Political Glass Ceiling. From Transhumanity, Vladimir Frolov on feminism and beta male losers; and Hank Pellissier on ova-fusion and the elimination of the male. Unmaking a difference: Is gender neutrality the new stereotype? Robin Phillips wonders. Women, please stop having affairs with older, more powerful men. Let's give chivalry another chance: It's been unfairly maligned as sexist, but women and men alike would benefit from bringing it back. Rob Okun is mad as hell at conventional manhood. Kisses and hugs in the office: How the once-intimate sign-off is feminizing the workplace, for better or worse. Down and dirty: Do men and women perceive cleanliness differently? Kay S. Hymowitz on the plight of the alpha female: Women remain scarce in the most elite positions — and it’s by choice. Kathoey “in trend”: Dredge Byung'chu Kang on emergent genderscapes, national anxieties and the re-signification of male-bodied effeminacy in Thailand. Here are 5 reasons modern life is driving manliness to extinction.

Rachel Dedman (Oxford): The Importance of Being Ernst: A Reassessment of E. H. Gombrich’s Relationship with Psychoanalysis. David McGowan (USD): Making Law School More Useful. Will law school students have jobs after they graduate? Elizabeth Lesly Stevens investigates. How to fix legal education: David Fontana reviews Failing Law Schools by Brian Z. Tamanaha (and more). Heath Brown interviews Scott Melzer, author of Gun Crusaders: The NRA’s Culture War. Should civilians be allowed to carry tasers? From Wired, Quinn Norton on an eulogy for #Occupy. What a week it was in the world of corporate criminality and governmental spinelessness. Better a Pharaoh or a Tempest? They say democracies make good neighbors — for Israel these days, it doesn’t seem so straightforward. Bruce Bartlett on the alarming corruption of the think tanks. Rein in the rich: John B. Judis on how higher taxes could lift the economy. Robert Frank on why millionaires prefer dogs over cats. To celebrate Renewal’s twentieth birthday, a special on-line issue brings together some of the most important articles published in the journal since it first appeared in 1993.

Tracing humanity's African ancestry may mean rewriting “out of Africa” dates. Does survival of the sexiest explain civilization? Benjamin Phelan on the most spectacular mutation in recent human history: How did milk help found Western civilization? Unnatural selection: Salamanders, fish and perhaps even humans are evolving fast in response to toxic chemicals — is that bad? State of the species: Does success spell doom for Homo sapiens? Charles C. Mann wonders. Brandon Kein on how human evolution is entering an exciting new phase. Colin Farrelly on the duty to extend the “biological warranty period” (in 5 parts). The recipe for immortality: An expert in synthetic biology explains how people could soon live for centuries. Max More on superlongevity without overpopulation. Marios Kyriazis on the global brain and its role in human immortality. Gattaca alert: Should we welcome the new age of eugenics? The origin of intelligence and mental illness are linked to ancient genetic accident. David Pearce on humans and intelligent machines co-evolution: fusion or replacement? Dawn Morrow and J.F. Sargent on 5 weird directions human evolution could have taken.