Cecil E. Bohanon and W. Allen Hutson (Ball State): The Economics of Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451. Salih Yucel (Monash): Fethullah Gulen: Spiritual Leader in a Global Islamic Context. A review of No Culture, No Future by Simon Brault. iHuman: In what ways is immersion in digital technologies changing us as humans? A review of books on the Indian wars. The polite Islamophobia of the intellectual: A review of The Flight of the Intellectuals by Paul Berman and Islamophobia / Islamophilia: Beyond the Politics of Enemy and Friend. If you’re familiar with the phenomenon of the so-called “fuck-yeah” tumblelog, you will not be surprised to know of the existence of Fuck Yeah Cartography (and more). Mr. Mimic: John H. McWhorter on the extraordinary gifts and fleeting legacy of Sammy Davis, Jr. How times have changed, ex-Playboy Bunnies say. Wasn’t the fall of the Berlin Wall supposed to set the world free and end history? In the 20 years since, communities worldwide have voluntarily retreated behind walls and security cameras. The Western is dead; long live the Western. Intelligent Life has a mini-series on classics that might not get a green light today. From The Scoop Deck, a look at the civilized way to go to sea. Good or bad, baby names have long-lasting effects. A review of Understanding Nationalism: On Narrative, Cognitive Science, and Identity by Patrick Colm Hogan. Move over US soaps, telenovelas seduce the globe. The ruins of modern Greece: Facilities built for Olympics go unused; a preference for smoking over sport? From Humanities, an article on Napoleon, Britain, and the Siege of Cadiz. Ministry of Silly Wars: Lawrence Osborne on Britain in Central Asia. UC-Berkeley wants students to take DNA tests for their health and education — what's wrong with that?
Generation Joshua aims to get young people working to "help America return to her Judeo-Christian foundations". An article on the Constitution Party: Delusional religious fanatics pushing for Christian tyranny. Chris Hedges on how the Christian fascists are growing stronger. Is Sarah Palin the new leader of the Christian Right? Benyamin Cohen on S.E. Cupp, the Right's favorite atheist. Paleo Wacko: Jason Zengerle on the roots of Rand Paul’s radicalism. The SPLC profiles 10 of the deeply troubled individuals leading the Right-wing, government-hating crusade (and more). Presidential hopeful Gary Johnson is a libertarian among the Republicans. Why do libertarians produce better literature than conservatives? Remembering the New Right: Richard Meagher on political strategy and the building of the GOP. Republicans dismissed Mike Huckabee in 2008; does the Party need him now? A look at 10 things that terrify Right-wingers. From National Affairs, Henry Olsen on populism, American style. Matthew Continetti on the Two Faces of the Tea Party: Rick Santelli, Glenn Beck, and the future of the populist insurgency. From Playboy, an article on Rogues of K Street: Confessions of a Tea Party Consultant. Flag daze: What is the Tea Party waving, exactly? The Two Conservatisms: The Tea Party is more flagrant, but the austerity movement is more insidious. Wilfred McClay on the sources of American renewal. Conservatism and the spirit of reform: Republicans squandered their hard-won reputation as the party of ideas — it's time to reclaim it. From The Economist, what's wrong with America's right: Too much anger and too few ideas — America needs a better alternative to Obama; and the tea-party movement is pushing the Republicans to the right — that may make it harder to recapture the White House.
Brian J. Sudlow (Reading): Violence and Non-Violence: French Catholic Writers between the Mimetic Crisis and the Crucified. From Minerva, Pauline O’Flynn (MIC): The Creation of Meaning: Simone de Beauvoir’s Existentialist Ethics; and Brian Lightbody (Brock): Death and Liberation: A Critical Investigation of Death in Sartre’s Being and Nothingness. From Rolling Stone, the Runaway General: Stanley McChrystal, Obama’s top commander in Afghanistan, has seized control of the war by never taking his eye off the real enemy: The wimps in the White House. A review of Carthage Must Be Destroyed: The Rise and Fall of an Ancient Civilization by Richard Miles. A review of Fly Fishing with Darth Vader: And Other Adventures with Evangelical Wrestlers, Political Hitmen, and Jewish Cowboys by Matt Labash. Psychologists’ research on the power of movement is giving us insight into why we first danced and how cultures built on that ancient impulse. From Law, Social Justice & Global Development, Raza Saeed on Conceptualising Success and Failure for Social Movements. “Aryanism” is a strictly modern, anti-democratic political ideology, as are the politics of the Islamic Republic of Iran. A review of The War Lovers: Roosevelt, Lodge, Hearst, and the Rush to Empire, 1898 by Evan Thomas. From Vice, an interview with Helen Thomas. What went wrong: Why did Iran's pro-democracy movement stall? From GQ, lost in the catastrophic aftermath of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill is the gripping tale of the rig workers and the Coast Guard crewmen who rescued them; Sean Flynn re-creates their long, harrowing, heart-pounding night. Why does the government still allow suspected terrorists to buy guns? The 10 least sexy World Cup players: Sexy is, truly, in the eye of the beholder. Think gas is too pricey? Think again.
And check out an interview with Henry Roth biographer Steven Kellman over at Paper Trail, Bookforum's blog on publishing, literature, and our favorite authors.
From the NCSF, a report on What Psychology Professionals Should Know About Polyamory. McSweeney's takes a look at the conflicted existence of a female porn writer. How the Internet porn business works: Researchers set up adult Web sites to study how the industry makes its money and spreads malware. From Arena, Alison Caddick questions the mainstreaming of porn. Safe Words: How the prevention message disappeared from the public conversation about sex. A review of Sexual Coercion in Primates and Humans: An Evolutionary Perspective on Male Aggression Against Females. Sex Book Throwdown: A book battle between Andrea Dworkin’s Pornography: Men Possessing Women and Nadine Strossen’s Defending Pornography. Why the T in GLBT? To understand the answer is to understand much of what animates the sexual Left. Remember the most convulsive, brain-ripping climax you ever had? Sexbots will electrocute our flesh with climaxes twice as gigantic because they'll be more desirable, patient, eager, and altruistic than their meat-bag competition. A look at 6 famous geniuses you didn't know were perverts. Why do women have sex? The answers are more diverse and abundant than you may think. Why it’s interesting why women have sex: A review of Cindy M. Meston and David M. Buss's Why Women Have Sex: The Psychology of Sex in Women’s Own Voices. God, sex and love on American campuses: The sex is hot, but the heart is cold — undergraduate men today have more "fuck buddies" than dates. Have the Feds gone soft on porn? Activists urge members of Congress to take a stand against online smut. A review of Hooking Up: Sex, Dating and Relationships by Kathleen Bogle. Jon Sobel on the Great Masturbation Debate: Do I touch myself? Very well then I touch myself.
From the inaugural issue of Culture Unbound, a special section on the use of cultural research. A lament for the humanities: Once upon a time the humanities were celebrated, the sciences largely shrugged off, writes Michael Ruse — that was unfortunate, but so is the current reversal of that situation. From Liberal Education, a special issue on the humanities; and a special issue on liberal education and the disciplines, including economics, history, religious studies, English/foreign language, the classics, and biochemistry and molecular biology. From The Minnesota Review, a special section on critical credos, including contributions by Michael Berube, Rita Felski, Diana Fuss, Andrew Ross, and more; an interview with UC-Irvine's Hillis Miller, bellwether of academic literary criticism for the past fifty years; an interview with Stephen J. Greenblatt on the new historicism; an interview with Amanda Anderson, author of The Way We Argue Now: A Study in the Cultures of Theory; and a review of Bad Modernisms. The global turn in postcolonial literary studies: A review of The Postcolonial and the Global by Revathi Krishnaswamy and John C. Hawley; Mongrel Nation: Diasporic Culture and the Making of Postcolonial Britain by Ashley Dawson; Postcolonial Writers in the Global Literary Marketplace by Sarah Brouillette; and Reading the Global: Troubling Perspectives on Britain's Empire in Asia by Sanjay Krishnan. From Arcade, William Egginton on linguistic relativism and grammar conservatism; Andrew Goldstone on a "positivist" style of literary scholarship and other terms of praise; and why have the revolutions that Theory enacted become an embarrassment? In praise of tough criticism: An epidemic of faint praise and anonymous reviews threatens to enervate the free flow of ideas in academe.
David E. Bernstein (GMU) and Thomas C. Leonard (Princeton): Excluding Unfit Workers: Social Control Versus Social Justice in the Age of Economic Reform. From Kotuitui: New Zealand Journal of Social Sciences Online, a special issue on work and well-being, including Rachel Morrison and Terry Nolan (AUT): I Get By with a Little Help from My Friends at Work; and Barbara Plester (Auckland): Healthy Humour: Using Humour to Cope at Work. A review of The Provocative Joan Robinson: The Making of a Cambridge Economist by Nahid Aslanbeigui and Guy Oakes. A review of Woodrow Wilson: A Biography by John Milton Cooper Jr. Hail the 21st-century Enlightenment — ideas don't come much bigger. Dan Ariely on the 7 habits of highly ineffective people. From The Objective Standard, Alan Germani on the recent New Criterion article “Ayn Rand: Engineer of Souls” by Theodore Dalrymple. Martin Gardner was a polymath with a sense of humor; Scott McLemee pays tribute. A review of Edward Said: The Charisma of Criticism by H. Aram Veeser. A review of Stefan Klein's Leonardo's Legacy: How Da Vinci Reimagined the World. How to prevent deepwater spills: Safety upgrades are critical but could mean higher prices for oil and gas. Actress, prostitute and empress of Rome, Theodora's life is perfect for fiction. Johann Hari on the super-rich CEO scam — and how to stop it. An interview with David Remnick on President Obama, magazine publishing, and American Idol. From Sociology.org, is there room for a Functionalism 2.0 in the theoretical spaces of sociology? A review of At the Bottom of Shakespeare's Ocean by Steve Mentz. Upside-Down Bailout: When the U.S. Treasury faced insolvency in 1895, Wall Street colossus J.P. Morgan was the only man who could save the day.
Andreas Gunnarsson (Gothenburg): The First Swede in Space: The Making of a Public Science Hero. From Sweden's Axess, people's perception of themselves is much more critical in determining their class than occupation, residence or income; it seems to be a law of nature to divide people into groups and identify status; the right-left dimension has long been dominated by the issue of wealth distribution, but now questions about morals, culture and lifestyle are becoming increasingly important; the paradoxes of the halal hippie: Radical people support reactionary clergies, and the nationalist Sweden Democrats attack Islamists, with whom they actually have a great deal in common; and as we in Sweden were losing our ideological battles abroad, it became clear that our sympathy was often simply a pose aimed at disguising a taking of ideological sides. Frankly, IKEA is doing more for the image of Sweden than all governmental efforts combined. From n+1, a review essay on Stieg Larsson, the man who blew up the welfare state; and this is what happens when rich, well-traveled, and well-educated children from a tiny Viking country covered in forest grow up and try to write fiction. Why are Nordic detective novels so successful? (and more). The land of Hans Christian Andersen and Hamlet finds a place in the hearts of everyone who lives or studies there. In Norway, even murders and rapists have a shot at landing in "open prison". A review of Wasteland With Words: A Social History of Iceland by Sigurdur Gylfi Magnusson. Iceland after the fall: Notes from an icy island on the anniversary of its meltdown (and more). Whether Iceland will bring philosophy centre-stage for the first time in the nation’s life, history will tell. Rolf Hugoson on debating the Nordic consensus culture (and a response).
The inaugural issue of The Irish Anarchist Review is out. Table soccer aims to be taken seriously as a sport. From First Monday, a special issue on the digital habitat. Rules for drone wars: An interview with Philip Alston, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions. Philip Bump on Michael Kinsley, opinion, and the evolution of media. From Monitor on Psychology, Daniel Gilbert discusses how his research on happiness changed his own life; the work of Norman R.F. Maier offers an example of how those at the core of the discipline of psychology can thwart those who challenge mainstream views; and Little Albert regains his identity: One of psychology's greatest mysteries appears to have been solved. From JWSR, a review essay on fair trade coffee books. What do we really know about the crucifixion of Jesus? Yasha Levine on Manhattan’s Welfare Kings: How billionaires turned farms into personal tax havens and petty cash machines, allowing them to give less, while taking more. From Forbes, a special report on 25 Ideas to Change the World: Luminaries take on problems from poverty to violence to finance. From the Saturday Evening Post, a look at America’s century of oil problems. Gasbags: Politicians, oilmen, and green-energy boosters love to invoke the idea of energy security — none of them know what they're talking about. A review of American Insurgents, American Patriots: The Revolution of the People by T.H. Breen (and more). At the World Cup, the empire strikes back: The tournament allows former colonies to face their colonizers on a level playing field. Right life in the wrong life: Joachim Gauck talks about Ossis and Wessis, opposition, conformism, and the long-term psychological effects of a dictatorial regime.
From Utopian Studies, John Hickman (Berry): When Science Fiction Writers Used Fictional Drugs: Rise and Fall of the Twentieth-century Drug Dystopia; Sing-chen Lydia Chiang (BC): Visions of Happiness: Daoist Utopias and Grotto Paradises in Early and Medieval Chinese Tales; Jose Luis Ramos-Gorostiza (Complutense): Socio-economic Utopianism in Spain at the End of the Nineteenth Century: La Nueva Utopia by Ricardo Mella; Janet Sarbanes (CalArts): The Shaker "Gift" Economy: Charisma, Aesthetic Practice and Utopian Communalism; Daniel P. Jaeckle (Concordia): Embodied Anarchy in Ursula K. Le Guin's The Dispossessed; and a review of Rhetorics of Fantasy by Farah Mendlesohn. From The New Yorker, what’s behind the boom in dystopian fiction for young readers? Torsten Krol's The Dolphin People is a great utopian parable for our savage times. From Bookforum, a special section on Utopia & Dystopia: Paul La Farge on how perfect worlds are games to be played by following the rules to the letter; and is it time for dystopian novelists to end the reign of the free-market idealists? Keith Gessen investigates. From New American City, an article on Frank Lloyd Wright’s Utopian Dystopia. From Changesurfer Radio, an interview with Russell Jacoby on the decline of both public intellectualism and utopianism, and the prospects for a return of both. Leland B. Yeager on Uchronia, or Alternative History: The history that didn't happen can be just as interesting as the history that did. A review of Technology and Utopia by Howard P. Segal. From e-flux, Hans Ulrich Obrist on Manifestos for the Future. From Fast Company, Jamais Cascio on Futures Thinking: The Basics, Asking the Question, Scanning the World, Mapping the Possibilities (part 2), and Writing Scenarios.
Yuliya Kozyrakis (FUB): Remembering the Future: Ethnic Memory in Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides. Parvin Ghasemi and Mitra Tiur (Shiraz): The Promise and Failure of the American Dream in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Fiction. From Standpoint, Craig Raine on poet-novelists or novelist-poets: does it matter? From The Wilson Quarterly, a review of books on Jane Austen. The working-class lover of JM Synge, one of Ireland’s great playwrights, has been airbrushed out of history. Paul la Farge reviews Tintin and the Secret of Literature by Tom McCarthy. Before Milledgeville, Georgia was just another place for Ben Roethlisberger to degrade women, it was the country home of Flannery O'Connor. Terry Teachout reviews Brad Gooch's Flannery: A Life of Flannery O’Connor (and more; and more by Wendy Lesser at Bookforum). A review of Young Romantics: The Shelleys, Byron and Other Tangled Lives by Daisy Hay (and more). From NYRB, a review essay on books about Charles Dickens. Dickens and People: Today’s gossip magazines are like 19th-century serialized novels. Pointing to the Divine: Robert E. Lauder on Eugene O'Neill and the need for God. A review of The Female Gothic: New Directions. A review of The Novel: An Alternative History — Beginnings to 1600 by Steven Moore. Late Renaissance Man: Intellectual adventure characterises the life of George Steiner. Crime fiction used to entertain us with double acts such as Holmes and Watson — but when and why did it lose its sense of humour? An interview with Martin Amis: "It's funny, life". Battle of the Books: Jim Walsh discovers the one place JD Salinger, America’s most famous literary recluse, could always be found — the courtroom. Francine Prose has produced a body of work that, taken as a whole, is without peer in contemporary American fiction.