Michael Peters (Illinois): The Global Failure of Neoliberalism: Privatize Profits; Socialize Losses. From The Walrus, an article on the last of the wild Jews: The end of an era in Jewish-American literature? After the Imperial Presidency: Will the new president and Congress undo the executive-power plays of the Bush era? Access all eras: Amid the mass of works of popular historical non-fiction, three historians set out to illuminate and enliven the past. From First Things, an interview with Rene Girard, one of the most important Christian intellectuals of our time. Does religion make you nice? The latest research on religion and niceness. A review of The Enemy Within: 2,000 Years of Witch-hunting in the Western World by John Demos. Was it fair to compare the McCain campaign to George Wallace’s? Here’s what Nicholas Katzenbach thinks about Lewis and the campaign of 2008. From The New Yorker, a review of books on overparenting. Does the conventional wisdom about the market still stand? James Surowiecki wants to know; and why the market couldn’t check its fall. Rereading history: The Bibliotheca Alexandrina makes reading history a pleasure. More on Descartes’ Bones by Russell Shorto. How an unassuming Treasury under secretary is implementing innovative sanctions on Iran that could finally give Washington what it hasn’t had in Tehran in three decades: influence.
From Guernica, An interview with Bernard-Henri Levy; and what can a California geographer possibly teach us about the American troop surge and ethnic cleansing in Iraq? Three trends bode ill for our future: the increase in weather disasters, the black market in organs and the growing demand for drinking water. A review of The Earth after Us: What Legacy Will Humans Leave in the Rocks? by Jan Zalasiewicz. The Great Persuader: Like FDR and Reagan, Obama can move a crowd — but can he do what they did and move the country? Odd man out: An article on Chuck Hagel’s Republican exile. From Edge, Sendhil Mullainathan on the irony of poverty. The chaplain's dilemma: Can pastors in the military serve God and government? From Commentary, an article on speculators, politicians, and financial disasters. Optimism is a Warm Gun: Daniel Larison on how the smiley ideology kills happiness. The Reformer's Rubbish: Archaeologists unveil secrets of Luther's life. How about a little loyalty? In politics, media and beyond, our society's new heroes are complicated people with glimmers of hope — a look at pop culture now. From nth position, a review of books on HG Wells. An interview with Tracy Chapman, the quiet revolutionary. An interview with James K. Galbraith, populist economist. Britain’s four nations: For John Lloyd, the UK is likely to remain united.
From Wired, an article on The Godfather of Bangalore; and a look at how math unraveled the "Hard Day's Night" mystery. Could climate change and economic collapse consign us to the same fate as the Mayans? Farhad Manjoo on a radical business plan for Facebook: Charge people. An article on LinkedIn, the site that likes a bad economy. Great expectations: Should doctors give patients placebos? The beauty world is traditional in one respect: nepotism. A look at what the public doesn't get about climate change. Al Gore on the Climate for Change: How we can save the economy and the earth at the same time. Why, after 30 years of deregulation, is the state bigger than ever? Scott McLemee reviews The Private Abuse of the Public Interest: Market Myths and Policy Muddles by Lawrence Brown and Lawrence Jacobs. The scariest part about the economic collapse is that, even still, nobody knows what's going on. From Capitalism, a look at how the connection of Alan Greenspan to Ayn Rand, decades ago, is being used to blacken her name and her ideas. Where did Adam Smith go wrong? Michael Walzer investigates. From The National, on his ride to work, Mansour Ajami takes in humanity: rushing, sleeping, phoning, listening humanity; and a review of Loneliness: Human Nature and the Need for Social Connection by John T. Cacioppo and William Patrick.
From The New Yorker, David Remnick on The Joshua Generation: Race and the campaign of Barack Obama; Ryan Lizza on how Obama won; James Wood on Obama's victory speech: A very good night for the English language; George Packer on how the economic crisis can help Obama redefine the Democrats; Roger Angell on a new start for the Greatest Generation; and article on Rahm Emanuel’s mind, body, and spirit. Paul Krugman on Franklin Delano Obama. First things first: Some thoughts on what Obama's top priority should be. Doris Kearns Goodwin on learning from past presidents in moments of crisis. A look at how transition periods have played out over the past six administrations. From GOOD, a look at the First 100 Days of the last 12 presidents. Sometimes continuity trumps change: Three Bush appointees in crucial positions likely to remain. In the great national narrative, where will Obama's election really fit? Five historians answer. From Time, an article on the official end of the Reagan Era. GOP rebranded: How New England's Republicans can hit "restart". What's ahead for Gov. Palin? Seven challenges. From National Review, an interview with Joe the Plumber. What a long, strange trip it’s been: Bill Ayers looks back on a surreal campaign season (and an interview at The New Yorker). Obameidolia: Well, you knew this had to happen eventually.
From New York, geek pop star: Malcolm Gladwell’s elegant and wildly popular theories about modern life have turned his name into an adjective — Gladwellian! A review of Graffiti Lives: Beyond the Tag in New York’s Urban Underground by Gregory Snyder. A review of The Reading Nation in the Romantic Period by William St. Clair and The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes by Jonathan Rose. Claude of the Jungle: Claude Levi-Strauss turns 100. God for the godless: An article on Salman Rushdie's secular sermon. Shift happens: Will 2012 bring the end of the world as we know it? #@!*: What makes language foul? From Mute, Margarita Gluzberg's fascination with the fictions that sustain capitalism seems increasingly relevant as they start to unravel in the face of the financial crisis. All bets are off: Spreading the risk has spread the losses. Did people who knew about secret, CIA-led coups use that information to game the stock market? Why don't war heroes win the presidency? Does executive authority corrupt the mind? A review of In Sickness and in Power: Illnesses in Heads of Government During the Last 100 Years by David Owen. With election over, interest groups are calling in the IOUs. What does covering a two-year campaign do to the soul of a journalist? Help for election addicts: Recovery strategies for those coming down off a two-year campaign binge.
From Words Without Borders, a special issue on the ultimate act of translation: immigration. From Cabinet, guilt must be learned; shame, it appears, comes naturally. Hardwired with a sense of irony: Language has many layers of meaning — when and how do we grasp them? An interview with Kelly Bulkeley on exploring the deep ties between our dream lives and the great religions of the world. Will the market kill your marriage? Recession and divorce, it is said, go together like carriage and horse. More and more and more on The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World by Niall Ferguson (and an excerpt at Vanity Fair). From Forbes, a special section on corporate social responsibility. B Lab wants to separate companies that merely claim they are responsible from those that actually do good in the world, but can a logo really change the way America does business? From Fortune, Wall Street thought it had risk all figured out — but the very system the banks created to protect themselves are at the heart of the financial meltdown. The American Void: Simon Critchley on how there is something desperately lonely about Barack Obama’s universe. Karen Tumulty on the once and future Hillary. Matthew Yglesias on how to break the neocon lock on Washington. From The Monkey Cage, here's a small dose of perspective on the Democratic victory in 2008.
From History & Policy, Calder Walton (Cambridge): Torture and Intelligence Gathering in Western Democracies; and Geoffrey Hosking (UCL): The "Credit Crunch" and the Importance of Trust. From TNR, why Obama's victory does not necessarily indicate a broader political realignment; and what part of "overwhelming electoral defeat" does the GOP not understand? Norman Solomon on why Obama has a mandate to spread the wealth. Here's the full text of Obama's Challenge: America's Economic Crisis and the Power of a Transformative Presidency by Robert Kuttner. Ghost in the shell: How George and now Barack mirror our American psyche. Looking past defeat: How can McCain recover? Alan Wolfe on how Obama buried the Southern strategy. Mark Lilla on the perils of "populist chic". Conservative Jeffrey Hart on how the Republicans are now the stupid party. From Edge, Sarah Palin's criticism of fruit files is just bad buzz; research on them offers insights into learning, genes, diseases. Are witches real? National Catholic Register investigates. It's the historic poll you've all been waiting for — no, not the Presidential election, but the 2008 New Humanist Bad Faith Award. Devil's Advocate: Milton expert Stanley Fish refuses to demonise the administrator and warns against influencing the moral character of students. Net prophets: A review of books on Google.
From Obit, death fascinates, death is fun to look at, especially violent death — especially if it happens to some other guy; and a look at how The Economist knows how to say goodbye. Snitch perverts, liars, scum, liberal hacks, media morons — Media Matters for America fights ire with fire. Stop the Journalismisms!: The media business is chock full of platitudes, most of them wrong. Kenya’s fixation with Barack Obama represents a form of escapism for an African country beset by political dysfunctionality. From LRB, a review of Memories of Eden: A Journey through Jewish Baghdad by Violette Shamash and Baghdad, Yesterday: The Making of an Arab Jew by Sasson Somekh; and I could sleep with all of them: A review of In the Shadow of the Magic Mountain: The Erika and Klaus Mann Story by Andrea Weiss. The oldest conundrum: The red lights are going out all over Europe — but not elsewhere. What's with all the ugly people having sex? Esquire tracks the democratization of pornography to the mainstream. An interview with Steven Novack on a future in which solar antennae are as easy to use as Saran Wrap — and almost as cheap. A review of Otto Neurath: the Language of the Global Polis by Nader Vossoughian. An article on the battle of the Caspian Sea. Faced with a horrific drug problem, Vancouver is trying a radical experiment: Let junkies be junkies.
From Slate, what Obama does next: The presidential transition FAQ; and a guide to key appointments Obama should resist. The O-List: TNR lists the 30 people who matter most — in order; and a look at why Rahm Emanuel was the only choice, but just the right choice. Change you can motherfucking believe in: How Rahm Emanuel will manage Obama's White House (and more and more). A butler well served by this election: For 34 years, Eugene Allen carried White House trays with pride — now there's even more reason to carry himself that way. From Dissent, contributors write on The Day After. From Salon, how wrong they were: Remembering an election season full of fabulously wrongheaded predictions; and everyone agrees that Barack Obama's election is a meaningful moment — but what, exactly, does it mean? Here's a child's garden of right-wing reaction to the Obama win. What’s next for affirmative action? How Barack Obama's role as America's first black president could affect race-based preference programs. The opposition to political correctness: A review of It's a PC World by Edward Stourton. Passion for the enterprise: Robert Silvers of the New York Review of Books retells the American institution's creation story. A spur-of-the-moment decision to buy a wolf cub changed Mark Rowlands’s life — from that moment on he found human company never quite matched up
A new issue of Open Letters Monthly is out. The young generation: An article on Burroughs and Kerouac and an unpublished collaboration. A review of Gabriel Garcia Marquez: A life by Gerald Martin. Jean-Marie Le Clezio has won the Nobel Prize, but not the unanimous support of his fellow writers. With her new memoir, literary co-hoaxer Savannah Knoop steps out of JT LeRoy's shadow — but can she step out of Laura Albert's? From New York, a special issue on living cheap. A profile of economist Nouriel Roubini: "I fear the worst is yet to come". An article on Prince Charles at 60: A lifetime as heir apparent. Must it always be about sex? The Supreme Court will soon have to consider the meaning of that most versatile of four-letter words. Why do we crave love so much, even to the point that we would die for it? Move over, my pretty, ugly is here. The original Bond girls were sex objects to be looked at, lusted over, and discarded — but are 007’s women finally getting the respect they deserve? The nimble tread of the feet of Fred: A review of Fred Astaire by Joseph Epstein (and an excerpt). The world’s first temple? Predating Stonehenge by 6,000 years, Turkey's stunning Gobekli Tepe upends the conventional view of the rise of civilization. A continuing abomination: A landmark ruling provides hope for thousands of slaves in West Africa.