The collective work of a single author: Behind the individual writer's name on a title page lies the invisible labour of many different people. A new way with words: The traditional division between the novel and short story is becoming increasingly blurred. The importance of being dandy: Narcissistic, superficial, decadent: These perfumed popinjays may not always write the best books, but they are masterpieces in themselves. If we refuse to acknowledge good writing because we disapprove of the way the artist behaves, the loss will be immense, and it will be our own. Check out Ducts, the webzine of personal stories. Blogging saved critics from extinction: Lyn Gardner was in danger of becoming a dodo, but the blogosphere has breathed new life into the dying art of reviewing. To those familiar with the ongoing debate in the book world, Rushdie's meaning could hardly have been clearer: Blogs aren't the enemy.
From Ephemera, a review of Corporate Social Responsibility: Doing the Most Good for Your Company and Your Cause; Harvard Business Review on Corporate Responsibility; and The Triple Bottom Line: Does it All Add Up? Assessing the Sustainability of Business and CSR. Moving Beyond the Non-Profit Industrial Complex: Do capitalists fund revolutions? A look at some of the ways by which liberal philanthropists work to co-opt the activities of progressive groups all over the world. A review of The Billionaire Who Wasn't: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune by Conor O'Clery. A review of How Starbucks Saved My Life: A Son of Privilege Learns to Live Like Everyone Else by Michael Gates Gill. A review of All the Money in the World: How the Forbes 400 Make — and Spend — Their Fortunes. More on Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster by Dana Thomas.
From Eurozine, "counter-revolutionary" populism in eastern central Europe is the reaction to the neoliberal destruction of the welfare state from a middle class afraid of becoming declasse; and unlike the extremist parties of the 1930s, new populist movements worldwide do not aim to abolish democracy: quite the opposite, they thrive on democratic support—there's a conflict between elites that are becoming increasingly suspicious of democracy and angry publics that are becoming increasingly illiberal; and alternatives to the anti-communism and national conservatism of Poland's two main rightwing parties are barely offered by a Centre-Left tarnished by corruption scandals. Good bye (S)Tallinn! After centuries of foreign rule, Estonians sang for revolution twenty years ago and found their freedom. The never-resting city emerges as a wireless boomtown – the "Baltic tiger". But some fall by the wayside.
From Public Resistance, David Gabbar (ECU) and Karen Anijar (ASU): Suppressing Dissent? Think Tank Fascism & the Jihad Against Liberal Professors; and Juba Suoranta (Tampere) and Peter McLaren (UCLA): Socialist Pedadogy: It’s Not What the Ideologues Taught You. Eric Rauchway on Erwin Chemerinsky and Larry Summers and academic freedom in California. Steven P. Dandaneau (Tennessee): The Power Elite at 50: C. Wrights Mills’ Political Sociology in Midlife. Ulrich Oslender (Glasgow): The Resurfacing of the Public Intellectual: Towards the Proliferation of Public Spaces of Critical Intervention. [The latest issue of Bookforum includes a look back at Russell Jacoby’s The Last Intellectuals.] The legacy of the critique of academe in The Closing of the American Mind can be found in conservative inconsistencies about education, politics and homosexuality. What is an intellectual woman? An interview with Toril Moi.
From Dissent, who named the neocons? Benjamin Ross wants to know. The Israel Lobby revisited: Foreign Policy interviews John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt (and a review). Politics starts at the water’s edge: Domestic political maneuvering, more than grand strategy, contributed to the most important international political change of the latter half of the 20th century. The introduction to Foreign Affairs Strategy: Logic for American Statecraft by Terry L. Deibel. Training satellites on the United States: Homeland Security plans to share spy satellite data with domestic agencies. An excerpt from Enemies of Intelligence: Knowledge and Power in American National Security by Richard K. Betts. Is torture ever justified? Have the terrorist attacks of September 11th 2001 put a lasting dent in civil liberties?
From ACME: An International E-Journal for Critical Geographies, a special issue on sexuality and gender, including Robyn Longhurst (Waikato): A Pornography of Birth: Crossing Moral Boundaries; Richard Phillips (Liverpool): Unsexy Geographies: Heterosexuality, Respectability and the Travellers’ Aid Society; and Heidi J. Nast (DePaul): Loving... Whatever: Alienation, Neoliberalism and Pet-Love in the Twenty-First Century. A review of The Book of Love: In Search of The Kamasutra by James McConnachie (and more). Virtue rewarded: Virgins of the world unite. You have nothing to lose. Sex Ed for Grown-Ups: A review of Prime: Adventures and Advice on Sex, Love, and the Sensual Years by Pepper Schwartz.
From The American Scholar, an essay on Brooklyn Books of Wonder: Why a certain group of successful literary writers needs to get real; and a look at how a precocious group of high school poets learned to provide verse on demand. An article on living proof of the power of poetry. W. Dale Nelson's Gin Before Breakfast: The Dilemma of the Poet in the Newsroom explores how poet-journalists have straddled their two worlds. The first chapter from Language and the Declining World in Chaucer, Dante, and Jean de Meun by John M. Fyler. A review of Language and Region by Joan C. Beal. Determined that dying languages not be lost forever, researchers are traveling the world to interview the last speakers. One language is lost about every two weeks, they say.
From the Journal of Diplomacy, a special issue on conflict and coexistence, including Roberto Belloni (Queen's): Rethinking “Nation-Building”: The Contradictions of the Neo-Wilsonian Approach to Democracy Promotion. The introduction to Authoritarianism in an Age of Democratization by Jason Brownlee. From the International Journal on Multicultural Societies, a special issue on democracy and power-sharing in multi-national states. A review of Decentralization, Democratic Governance, and Civil Society in Comparative Perspective: Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The introduction to Interpretation and Revision of International Boundary Decisions by Kaiyan Homi Kaikobad. The introduction to State Death: The Politics and Geography of Conquest, Occupation, and Annexation by Tanisha M. Fazal.
From The New Atlantis, Gilbert Meilaender (Valparaiso): Human Dignity and Public Bioethics; a review of Devices of the Soul: Battling for Our Selves in an Age of Machines by Steve Talbott; a review of Romancing Opiates: Pharmacological Lies and the Addiction Bureaucracy by Theodore Dalrymple and The Cult of Pharmacology by Richard DeGrandpre. Ageing is a disease that can be cured: This is the radical claim that has made biomedical theorist Aubrey de Grey a popular hero of gerontology — and a maverick among the science community. Meet the man who wants us to live for 1,000 years. The Biocultural Turn: A review of The Prosthetic Impulse: From a Posthuman Future to a Biocultural Present by Marquard Smith and Joanna Morra; The Case of the Female Orgasm: Bias in the Science of Evolution by Elisabeth A. Lloyd; and Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games by Edward Castronova.
A review of Childhood in World History by Peter Stearns. Back to School: An article on youthography and the booming gospel of consumer empowerment. Those crazy kids: A review of Rebels: Youth and the Cold War Origins of Identity by Leerom Medovoi. Rethinking the teenager: Society is still not sure what to do about the problem with teenage boys. A review of The Dangerous Book for Boys. A review of Alpha Girls: Understanding the New American Girl and How She Is Changing the World by Dan Kindlon. The times of our lives: Our ideas of ageing have changed radically over the past 20 years. Eight writers covering different decades offer their poignant and revealing meditations on ageing, from a teenager to an eightysomething. Risky Decisions: A look at why growing old helps you grow older.