From TLS, a review of The RSC Shakespeare; a review of The Gods of Freud: Sigmund Freud’s Art Collection by Janine Burke; a review of The Animated Man: A Life of Walt Disney by Michael Barrier and Walt Disney: The biography by Neal Gabler; and fifty years after the TLS ran a symposium on "committed literature" around the world, a look back on the late Harold Beaver's piece on writers in the United States – and their obsession with self-definition. The Future of Gonzo: Hunter S. Thompson's widow Anita tries moving the celebrated writer's legacy forward. From Sign and Sight, "Richness, beauty, horror": An interview with Walter Kempowski on his autobiographical literature, his life as a writer and his activities as a people collector. Japan's Prodigal Novelist Returns: Haruki Murakami, writer of things foreign, has found a home — in the country of his birth (and more).
Cod... Salt... what’s next, a book on toothpicks? Yes. For you, reader, the war is just beginning: The Second World War has become the hottest thing in publishing. A look at the renewed appeal of chaps in a scrap. A review of Carl Von Clausewitz's "On War": A Book That Shook the World (Books That Shook the World) by Hew Strachan. A review of Shoot the Widow: Adventures of a Biographer in Search of Her Subject by Meryle Secrest. From The Atlantic Monthly, Writers in Training: Edward J. Delaney discusses the country's best graduate writing programs and how to compare them. Beat it, Twixters: Ryan O’Reilly’s Snapshot tells 20-somethings to hit the (metaphorical) road. There have to be books somewhere in this place: Recent cuts in library subsidies mean free access to information is now as rare as free parking.†
From Fronesis, what is it about coffee – and coffeehouses – that makes it so agreeable to the bourgeoisie? asks Jakob Norberg in a brief social history of the dark, rich brew. And of the bourgeois public sphere. A review of The Social Life of Coffee: The Emergence of the British Coffeehouse by Brian Cowan. Hacking Starbucks: Where to learn about the ghetto latte, barista gossip, and Nicole Kidman's usual. The Worst Op-Ed Ever Written? Ron Rosenbaum on Stanley Fish, the professor who makes you feel sorry for Starbucks. A teenager has been taken to hospital after overdosing on espresso. So how much is too much coffee? The New World of Wine: As European winemakers enter the harvest year, they face a growing set of challenges: the surging popularity of “New World” wines, less protection from the EU, and even global warming. An interview with Michael Veseth on where the world of wine is headed.†
From TAP, first Gonzales, then Bush? Impeachment should be a serious option — with an intermediary step. The Trouble with Impeachment: Bush and Cheney merit impeachment and conviction — that doesn't make it a good idea. From GQ, The 50 Most Powerful People in DC: In Washington, you are either a person with power or a person who acts like he has power. Herewith, the 50 men and women who make it all happen (but not anyone named Bush or Cheney). The Man Who Killed Compassionate Conservatism: Karl Rove and Tommy Thompson represented opposing ideas of Republican governance. Now, both are gone; and John Judis on Karl Rove, the Failed Architect. Despite his reputation as a political genius, Karl Rove made some fundamental miscalculations. And his cluelessness will live on in the White House.† Back to School for the GOP: To recover, Republicans will have to do something they haven't done in decades: learn from the other guys.†
The Christian Right's New Man: No one is happier with the results of the Iowa Straw Poll than charismatic evangelical Christians, who recently declared Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee "one of our own". Republicans, who just a few short years ago were trying to court Latino voters, will come to regret the anti- immigration one-upmanship they've exhibited in the primary campaign. The Naked Truth of a Conservative Activist (And Former Porn Star): Critics of Matt Sanchez think he's a hypocrite for being and a conservative activist and a former porn actor. Is he? Making Progress: ProgressNow exports its model for hyping liberal causes across the US. Britt Peterson goes inside Code Pink, D.C'.s most visible anti-war group. Hot Policy Wonks for the Democrats? The New Realists: See ya, Dick Holbrooke! Neo-liberalism is passť, anti-ideologues surge.
From Rolling Stone, The Real Liberal: John Edwards is third in the polls, but don't count him out. From The American Spectator, a cove story on Obama Rising: The charismatic freshman senator may just be the Democrat who can beat Hillary — and make liberalism a winning philosophy again. A Series of Fortunate Events: Barack Obama needed more than talent and ambition to rocket from obscure state senator to presidential contender in three years. He needed serious luck. Above the Fray: You’ve heard all about Barack Obama’s potential. But he has to get elected first. And a campaign can do funny things to a man. Professors have a crush on Obama, but his blog is audaciously lame. From Cracked, a look at the 12 worst candidate websites.
The introduction to The Cultural Contradictions of Democracy: Political Thought since September 11 by John Brenkman. Deciding what to do with jihadist operatives is the country's most urgent legal question. But there's little sign that the presidential candidates have given it much thought. The Worst of Both Worlds: Dahlia Lithwick on the false choice between treating terrorists as criminals or soldiers. The Making of a Homegrown Terrorist: The real threat to the West is not from foreign jihadis but from unremarkable civilians within our societies, says an insightful new report from the New York Police Department. From City Journal, an article on The Coming Urban Terror: Systems disruption, networked gangs, and bioweapons. A list of the 6 most over-hyped threats to America (and what should scare you instead). The Yoda of 9/11: Pat Curley slices through the loony conspiracy theories at his influential "Screw Loose Change" website. Secrets and Lies: John Young is the man behind the world's most dangerous website, "Cryptome".
From Mute, with the prospect of earning over the odds on derivatives trading, hedge fund managers are employing ever more high-tech means to calculate risk and predict stock market activity. But Wall Street’s faith in its own predictive powers often blinds investors to the fundamental laws of investment; and would a financial crisis mean recession, depression or revolution? And haven’t we been waiting a long time for this liberating, or devastating, catastrophe? Jeff Strahl surveys the prophets and naysayers and gives his own take on "a global crisis of unprecedented proportions". Debtonation: The global financial crisis exposes the failure of the economic model that rules the world. A review of The Panic of 1907: Lessons Learned from the Market’s "Perfect Storm" by Robert F Bruner and Sean D.Carr.† From Foreign Policy, an interview with Steve Forbes on private equity. Daniel Gross on How To Speak Hedgie: What hedge-fund managers mean when they talk about challenges.
Andrew Taslitz (Howard): Racial Blindsight: The Absurdity of Color-Blind Criminal Justice. Matt A. Barreto (Washington): "Si Se Puede! Latino Candidates and the Mobilization of Latino Voters. Cristina Rodriguez (NYU): The Significance of the Local in Immigration Regulation. Our Town: In the Illinois town of Carpentersville, a slate calling itself the All American Team won seats on the village board by vowing to crack down on illegal immigrants. Now all sorts of people don’t feel at home. Latin boon for Brand Canada: Divisive immigration politics in the U.S. are pushing talented Latinos further north. The Minutemen's Own Riefenstahl? Christie Czajkowski is more than a political activist fighting against a perceived Mexican invasion; she's the movement's videographer. A review of Border Film Project: Photos by Migrants & Minutemen on the U.S.-Mexico Border by Rudy Adler, Victoria Criado, and Brett Huneycutt. Is "American Owned" a sign of patriotism or xenophobia?
J. David Velleman (NYU): (1) How to Share an Intention; (2) Deciding How to Decide; and (3) Against the Right to Die. A review of Reason, Morality, and Beauty: Essays on the Philosophy of Immanuel Kant. A review of Kierkegaard: A Biography by Alastair Hannay and Soren Kierkegaard: A Biography by Joakim Garff. A review of Interpreting Philosophy: The Elements of Philosophical Hermeneutics by Nicholas Rescher. From Ovi, musings on politeness as handmaiden to philosophy (and part 2). Sharing laughs and a love of philosophy: Old friends from Harvard Dan Klein and Tom Cathcart combine philosophy and humor in Plato and a Platypus Walk Into a Bar: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes, the surprise hit of the book world.†
From Political Affairs, Respect Without Rights: An article on the privatization of morality. The Evil That Men Do: A review of The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil by Philip Zimbardo. From Monthly Review, an article on Arendt, Zizek and the concept "totalitarianism" and its role in current political discourse. A review of New Departures in Marxian Theory by Stephen Resnick and Richard Wolff. A review of A Farewell to Alms: A Brief Economic History of the World by Gregory Clark. Not So Dismal After All? A review of The Soulful Science: What Economists Really Do and Why It Matters by Diane Coyle. An interview with Tyler Cowen, author of Discover Your Inner Economist: Use Incentives to Fall in Love, Survive Your Next Meeting, and Motivate Your Dentist. An essay on how to Live a Life Worth Living.†
A review of The Death of Sigmund Freud: Fascism, Psychoanalysis and the Rise of Fundamentalism by Mark Edmundson (and more). A review of Putnam Camp: Sigmund Freud, James Jackson Putnam, and the Purpose of American Psychology by George Prochnik. Happy Days: The mechanism behind antidepressant drugs is unveiled, which could lead to better treatments for depression and anxiety disorders. A review of The Medicalization of Society: On the Transformation of Human Conditions into Treatable Disorders by Peter Conrad. Research finds the behaviour of a teenager who has fallen madly in love is akin to that of a patient with a psychiatric disorder. A review of The Anxious Brain: The Neurobiological Basis of Anxiety Disorders and How to Effectively Treat Them by Margaret Wehrenberg and Steven M. Prinz. An interview with Elyn R. Saks, author of The Center Cannot Hold: My Journey Through Madness.