From Vanity Fair, Arthur Miller's Missing Act: For all the public drama of Arthur Miller's career—his celebrated plays (including Death of a Salesman and The Crucible), his marriage to Marilyn Monroe, his social activism—one character was absent: the Down-syndrome child he deleted from his life. From The New Yorker, Blows Against the Empire: Adam Gopnik on the return of Philip K. Dick. From the Edinburgh International Book Festival, Sarah Crompton on the enduring power of Alan Bennett and Norman Mailer. A Fish Tale: How much of the decline in tuna and marlin fisheries is Hemingway’s fault? Possibly quite a lot. Life Sentences: An article on the U.S. tour of Gunter Grass.
From The Moscow Times, Russian architects looked toward Europe centuries before Peter I came along: A review of Russian Architecture and the West by Dmitry Shvidkovsky. In a kinder, gentler world, it might have become simply a second Leaning Tower. Instead, on July 14, 1902, the Campanile in the Piazza San Marco, Venice, came crashing down. A review of God's Architect: Pugin and the Building of Romantic Britain by Rosemary Hill (and more). The colonization of industrial space: Post-war industrial buildings now house sports facilities, kennels, and makeshift churches. The Road to Clarity: How a graphic designer and a typographer and their obsession with fonts and legibility led to a painstaking effort to clean up America’s road signs, one letter at a time; and a look at how American highway signs have changed, and how we ended up with the Clearview font.
Circular Logic: Volvelles, the precursors to computational visualization tools, reveal information in aesthetically pleasing and effective ways. A review of Pulse: How Nature is Inspiring the Technology of the 21st Century by Robert Frenay. A review of Everything is Miscellaneous by David Weinberger. A "googlenope" is a phrase that returns no hits when entered between quotation marks into the Google search engine. Further plumb the field by finding new googlenopes, and pairing them with googleyups, phrases that ought to be googlenopes, but aren't. Searching for gold in them, thar online networks – and finding it: The race to "monetize" sites like Facebook is on. Not Being There: Internet anonymity can foster fantasy — or mask a manipulative, sock-puppeting C.E.O. Our Lives, Controlled From Some Guy’s Couch: If you accept one pretty reasonable assumption, it is almost a mathematical certainty that we are living in someone else’s computer simulation.
From FT, an article on legalising drugs to beat terrorists; and no decision taken by a modern government is more disastrous than the laws that bar legal businesses from the recreational drugs industry. The most exotic aspect of the global black market is how pervasive and quotidian it is. From American Scientist, a review of The Atomic Bazaar: The Rise of the Nuclear Poor by William Langewiesche (and more). Sometimes you have to negotiate with "evil": A review of Failed Diplomacy: the tragic story of how North Korea got the bomb by Charles L. Pritchard. A review of Doomsday Men: The real Dr Strangelove and the dream of the superweapon by P. D. Smith. Robert D. Kaplan on The Plane That Would Bomb Iran: Inside the cockpit and culture of the B-2, whose pilots may carry the greatest responsibility in the U.S. military today.
Sujit Choudhry (Toronto): Does the World Need More Canada? The Politics of the Canadian Model in Constitutional Politics and Political Theory. The Arctic Cold War: With precious little ability to enforce its claims in the Arctic, Canada may be falling behind in asserting itself not in law, but in real life. The age-old key to Arctic sovereignty: Boots on the ground: History holds a frost-bitten warning for those with designs on our rich tundra. A historical drama – past versus present – is being played out north of Sharbot Lake, about 100 kilometres southwest of Ottawa. The catalyst in the drama is uranium. Reflections on the day we came unplugged: Four years on, the legacy of the blackout of 2003 seems to be warm memories more than lessons learned.
A review of Seizing Destiny: How America Grew From Sea to Shining Sea by Richard Kluger (and more). A review of The Politics of Heaven: America in Fearful Times by Earl Shorris. Is the Christian right withering? A CNN documentary on fundamentalists suggests a sea change in American politics. Preaching to the Choir: Evangelicals worry about the behavior of their brethren. From The Atlantic Monthly, The Rove Presidency: Karl Rove had the plan, the power, and the historic chance to remake American politics. What went wrong? James Carville on how Karl Rove lost a generation of Republicans. An interview with Karl Rove on his decision to resign, his myth, and the GOP's chances in 2008. The Art of the Campaign: The race to frame 2008 is on, and the winner could take it all.
John Linarelli (La Verne): When Does Might Make Right? Using Force for Regime Change. Benjamin Fordham (Binghamton): (1) Power or Plenty? Economic and Security Concerns in U.S. Intervention Decisions; (2) The Evolution of Republican and Democratic Positions on Cold War Military Spending: A Historical Puzzle; and (3) What Makes a Major Power? From Foreign Affairs, Rudy Giuliani on A Realistic Peace. What Would Gates Think? Former Defense Secretary William S. Cohen speculates on what is going inside the head of his successor. A review of Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA by Tim Weiner (and more and more). Here are ten life lessons the Army has taught an anonymous blogger. Soldier-reporters rewrite the rules: The pen is mightier than the sword. But if you want to scare the mightiest military in the world, try wielding both at the same time.
From New York, why New Yorkers last longer: This city, once known as a capital of vice and self-destruction, is now a capital of longevity. What happened? More than a prayer for single payer: An interview with Steffie Woolhandler, co-author of Bleeding the Patient: The Consequences of Corporate Health Care. John Allen Paulos on Sicko, health care and SCHIP: Who's counting? An understanding of how France came to its healthcare system would be instructive in any renewed debate in the United States. Suffering Differently: We assume that trauma victims everywhere are likely to experience PTSD. But what if we’re wrong?
From The Nation, The Diana/Whore Complex: The lovelorn, fragile women the media once revered have given way to skank posses of the skinny, the slutty and the overindulged. The Myth, the Math, the Sex: Why it’s not possible for men to play around more than women. Actually, a cigar is never just a cigar: A review of A World Made Sexy: Freud to Madonna by Paul Rutherford. No other socio-demographic group is subject to such ridicule, contempt or sarcastic admonishment than middle-aged men. Here's a handy guide on how to negotiate this existential thicket. The Male Scale: An article on 10 archetypes of manhood. A 33-year-old unmarried rabbi living in Israel, in the time that he was living and having a favourite friend among the apostles called John, was quite clearly a gay man. From American Sexuality, an article on the Biology of Sexual Orientation: Insight from animal research about what turns us on.
Robert Talisse (Vanderbilt): (1) A Farewell to Deweyan Democracy: Towards a New Pragmatist Politics; (2) Folk Epistemology and the Justification of Democracy; (3) Does Value Pluralism Entail Liberalism? Joel Colon-Rios (York): The Second Dimension of Democracy: The People and Their Constitution. The introduction to Democratic Rights: The Substance of Self-Government by Corey Brettschneider. A review of Kant's Cosmopolitan Theory of Law and Peace by Otfried Hoffe. A review of Understanding the Founding: The Crucial Questions by Alan Gibson. A review of Dred Scott and the Politics of Slavery by Earl M. Maltz. A review of The Lost Promise of Civil Rights by Risa L. Goluboff. A review of The Most Democratic Branch: How the Courts Serve America by Jeffrey Rosen.
The introduction to The Greek City States by P. J. Rhodes. The epitome of Socratic ambivalence: A review of The Death of Socrates: Hero, Villain, Chatterbox, Saint by Emily Wilson. A review of The Hellenistic Age: A Short History by Peter Green. A review of Ovid's Art and the Wife of Bath: The Ethics of Erotic Violence. A review of Plague and the End of Antiquity: The Pandemic of 541-750. A review of James "Athenian" Stuart: the Rediscovery of Antiquity. A review of Amerigo: The Man Who Gave His Name to America by Felipe Fernandez Armesto. A review of The Protestant Revolution: from Martin Luther to Martin Luther King by William G. Naphy.
From American Scientist, Genetics and the Shape of Dogs: Studying the new sequence of the canine genome shows how tiny genetic changes can create enormous variation within a single species; and Sorting Out the Genome: To put your genes in order, flip them like pancakes. Tit for tat: Abandoning offspring in search of new sexual conquests works—at least, for tits. From Frieze, a review of The Animals Reader. From an evolutionary perspective, animal brains seem no less capable of generating intelligence than do human ones. The differences are of degree, not kind, writes David P. Barash. Centuries ago, intuition was held in high regard but today it provokes suspicion; "it has gone down from the brain to the bowels", notes one behavioural scientist.