From TLS, was art in ancient times always plundered art? A review of Art as Plunder: The Ancient Origins of Debate about Cultural Property by Margaret M. Miles. Should cultural treasures, acquired under dubious circumstances, be returned to their places of origin? A review of African Art and the Colonial Encounter: Inventing a Global Commodity by Sidney Littlefield Kasfir. The art world goes local: In a shaky global art market, collectors stick close to home; shopping for Midwestern masterworks. From Afterall, Joshua Decter on art and its cultural contradictions: "What does it mean to encounter a work of art in the midst of economic and social ruination?" Has conceptual art jumped the shark tank? To see why works of conceptual art have an inherent investment risk, we must look back at the whole history of art, including art’s most ancient prehistory. Beauty, art, and Darwin: It is possible that we have a kind of built-in moral resistance to the runaway pathologies now visible in the arts — where did that resistance come from? AC Grayling on how artists produce work as a result of internal or external stimuli — the only aim should be to cause a reaction. From Resurgence, has the commodification of Banksy’s art taken the edge off his work? Art need not be edgy, so long as it's about community — no matter how self-effacing, maudlin and bourgeoisie that community is. In art we lust: At second blush, classic works are allowed to rise to their full erotic potential. Richard Eyre on why it's time to rethink our ideas about what makes great art (and responses).