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Omnivore

Whose idea of America

From Humanities, historians disagree about everything, or so it seems — including what to remember, what to teach, and much else. What makes someone a “real” American? 93% of Americans actually agree on this. Whose idea of America — Rauschenberg, Whitman, or Trump? Vaughn A. Booker on the false god of nationalism. Lynn Vavreck on the great political divide over American identity. America’s case of mistaken identity: Building a national identity may require offering special accommodations to


Paper Trail

Novelist Stephen King will receive PEN’s American Literary Service Award. PEN president Andrew Solomon (Far from the Tree) says that King “has inspired us to stand up to sinister forces through his rich prose, his generous philanthropy and his outspoken defense of free expression.” “It is generosity which reminds us that we are more than

Syllabi

"We Are Revolution": Introducing Asia's Proletarian Lit

Matt TurnerDuring the last election cycle, the American working class got a lot of airplay. Donald Trump’s rhetoric was a throwback to a different era of politics and a different economy. Talk of American workers

Daily Review

The Value of Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury”

A number of my fellow journalists are saying privately and publicly that Michael Wolff’s book is no big deal—“nothing we didn’t know already.” This response makes me think of people who see some piece of modern art, a Jackson Pollock or an Ellsworth Kelly, and say, “I could do that.” Yeah, but did you? I don’t

Interviews

Tony Tulathimutte and Malcolm Harris

I met author Tony Tulathimutte at a reading in Manhattan where he asked the audience to vote on which section of his novel Private Citizens to read from: the one on writer’s workshops or the one on pornography. Porn won, and Tony delivered a complex, funny, and disturbing passage. Later, when I saw his blurb recommending Malcolm Harris’s new study, Kids These Days: Human Capital and the Making of Millennials, I read the book and was impressed by its sweeping socio-economic critique.

Video

Bookforum: “False Starts”

Conversation

Minds of the Immortals: Emily Wilson on translating "The Odyssey"

Ben Shields

“The minds of the immortals rarely change,” old King Nestor tells Telemachus in Book III of The Odyssey, That may be true, but the ways that we experience and imagine those gods change regularly, Since the sixteenth century, dozens of English-language translators have traversed the epics of archaic Hellas, and all of them have returned with their own unique account: Blank verse, couplets, and prose are all available portals into Homer.

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