Miscellaneous: From TNR, a look at how copyright law could kill the fashion industry. Is there a scientific explanation for the human ability to use language? A review of The First Word: The Search for the Origins of Language by Christine Kenneally.  From Wired's "The Luddite", a 21st-Century Elegy for a Paradise Lost. Funny Radio Personalities: Talk radio's funniest host detests liberals but loves the environment. As for the least-funny hosts, turn to the left. Is there room for humour in art? In this current climate, is it morally wrong for artists to be anything other than deadly serious? What happens if they just want to make us giggle.

From The Weekly Standard, Bam! A cover story on making sense of America's celebrity-chef culture. Since moving The Atlantic Monthly from Boston to Washington two years ago (after vowing not to), David Bradley has sought out — with an open checkbook — some of the Beltway's best and brightest. Facebook Grows Up: At 19, Mark Zuckerberg came up with a new way for college kids to connect—and started an online revolution. Now 23, he's trying to build out his business without losing its cool.  A review of F5: Devastation, Survival, and the Most Violent Tornado Outbreak of the 20th Century by Mark Levine.

Who Killed the Love Story? An article on the lost art of making a great romantic movie. Far from romantic: A review of Robert Schumann: Life and Death of a Musician by John Worthen (and more). Sole survivors: Sandals are shaking off their nerdy image and desert boots are having another fashion moment. A review of Deluxe: How Luxury Lost its Luster by Dana Thomas. Ian Fleming Publications' decision to reanimate the late author's most famous creation, James Bond, in a novel by Sebastian Faulks to mark Fleming's centenary next year is the latest in a resurrection trade that has made literary estates some of the most powerful in the media. New free software puts the power of cybersleuthing in everybody’s hands. This might not be a good thing.


Miscellaneous: From Ovi, an essay on Western imperialism and the myth of secular salvation (and part 2). Immanuel Wallerstein on Nonproliferation: RIP. Profit or Principle? The West is back to engaging lucrative dictators. Life and the list: While many who live in Unesco world heritage sites find the distinction beneficial, pro-development parties may be frustrated by the restrictions.  A look at the World’s Most Overhyped Vacation Spots. Tyrants' top 10, with a bullet: Stalin had a soft spot for Bobby Short. For Pol Pot, it was the king of pop. A review of Conundrums of Humanity: The Quest for Global Justice by Jonathan Power. Naomi Klein, author of The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, on think tanks and battle tanks

From Sign and Sight, of accidental careers and inner emigration: An interview with political scientist Gunnar Hinck about imbalances and incompetences among East German leaders. Confessions of a BBC liberal: The BBC has finally come clean about its bias, says a former editor, who wrote Yes, Minister. A review of Safe Area Gorazde: The War in Eastern Bosnia 1992-1995 by Joe Sacco. Christoph Bertram on why Weak America = Weakened Europe. David Rieff on the Kouchner conversion. Sarko's Gift to the Wealthy: France's new president has launched an assault on the welfare state. Reason's cunning: Poland's populist parties share many of their characteristics with those in other European countries. The difference in Poland is that the government consists solely of populist parties. 

An interview with David Luban, author of Legal Ethics and Human Dignity, on Judge Mark Fuller.  Bigot begone: The bad news is you're a biased voter. The good news is that you can acknowledge and correct for that, writes NYU's Dalton Conley.  From Writ, a look at how Rove's and others' bad behavior suggests a set of golden rules for government, applicable regardless of which party is in charge. From National Journal, Rove Revisited: Carl Cannon on gaining some perspective on the legacy of The Architect. Trust Troubles: Low faith in government can make federal managers' jobs harder. Lend Me Your Earmarks: From pet projects to pocket-lining, influence-peddling, here is a surprising history lesson about the folks who first put the "patron" in "patronage." Citizen Bronstein: Why does the San Francisco Chronicle's editor want to emulate the pioneer of yellow journalism?


Miscellaneous: An interview with Mike Davis, author of Buda's Wagon: A Brief History of the Car Bomb. A review of The Islamist: Why I Joined Radical Islam in Britain, What I Saw Inside and Why I Left by Ed Husain. Research finds the most effective campaigns to encourage ethical consumption are those that take place at a collective level, such as the creation of Fairtrade cities, rather than those that target individual behaviour.  People use the term "anarchy" recklessly. They might be surprised at what it actually means. The industry that time forgot: The Big Dig was no fluke — it was just another day at the office for the most wasteful, least productive industry in America. What's wrong with the $1 trillion construction business? 

From PopMatters, a review of Instructions for American Servicemen in Iraq during World War II by The United States Army. Surviving prison rape: A review of Fish: A Memoir of a Boy in a Man’s Prison by T.J. Parsell. The transformative power of a good scrub: A review of Clean: A History of Personal Hygiene and Purity by Virginia Smith (and more). The first chapter from The Embedded Corporation: Corporate Governance and Employment Relations in Japan and the United States by Sanford M. Jacoby. The underworked American: Stop your whining: leisure time is on the rise. The Pantsuit Paradox: How do women signal power at the boys' club?  From Popular Mechanics, an article on the 10 worst disasters of the last 101 years. 

From Financial Times, Samuel Brittan on the crooked path of capitalism. Go Forth And Gentrify? So are "transitional" homebuyers guilty of class warfare? It's easy to talk about the downside of gentrification—high housing prices, evictions, and a creeping NIMBY-ism that elbows out social services. A review of The Cigarette Century: The Rise, Fall, and Deadly Persistence of the Product that Defined America by Allan M. Brandt.  What did Paul really mean? "New perspective" scholars argue that we need, well, a new perspective on justification by faith. A look at the strange, modern cult of being busy.  Women often emerge from the history of the American West as academic icons. After all, it was proto-feminists struggling against the frontier patriarchy who actually won the West, or so we're led to believe. An interesting set of studies recently looked into the role of situation in influencing “ethical” consumption.


Miscellaneous: From LiveScience, a look at history's most overlooked mysteries. A review of Geneses, Genealogies, Genres, and Genius: The Secrets of the Archive by Jacques Derrida.  The Changing Artic: Alun Anderson responds to Freeman Dyson's "Heretical Thoughts". Vast ancient settlement found at Angkor Wat: Ground-sensing radar and aerial photographs of the area around the temple have revealed the largest pre-industrial settlement ever discovered. Cracking the Cube: A combination of mathematical analysis and supercomputer number-crunching proves that any Rubik's Cube can be solved in 26 moves or fewer. A review of Actual Ethics by James R. Otteson. 

From Film & History, a review of "Pierre Bourdieu: Sociology is a Martial Art". A review of J K Galbraith: a 20th-Century Life by Richard Parker.  An article on the 10 most puzzling ancient artifacts. How many grains of sand make a heap? An interview with Timothy Williamson on what vagueness is and why it matters. A review of Mistakes Were Made (But Not By Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts by Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson (and more). Done in by Voldemort: A review of Galileo, Antichrist: a Biography by Michael White.  The first chapter from Paying the Tab: The Costs and Benefits of Alcohol Control by Philip J. Cook.

From TNR, a review of Garibaldi: Invention of a Hero by Lucy Riall. A review of Merit, Meaning, and Human Bondage: An Essay on Free Will by Nomy Arpaly. A review of Suffer and Survive: The Extreme Life of J.S. Haldane by Martin Goodman. Sweatology: The human cooling system may be leaky, but it’s efficient.  Genius and Madness: An article on creativity and mood and the myth that madness heightens creative genius. A review of How Mathematicians Think: Using Ambiguity, Contradiction, and Paradox to Create Mathematics by William Byers.  A review of Black Africans in Renaissance Europe. A review of Toxin: The Cunning of Bacterial Poisons by Alistair Lax. A review of The Periodic Table: Its Story and Significance by Eric R. Scerri. 

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