Political theory, Judaism, philosophy, atheism, animals and more

 Kevin Anthony Stoda (GUST): A Federalist Peace Theory, 1946-1992. From Vive le Canada, an article on Charles Taylor and the Hegelian Eden Tree: Canadian Philosophy and Compradorism. From Ghana's The Statesman, Kwame Anthony Appiah is our postmodern Socrates. He asks what it means to be African and African-American, but his answers immediately raise issues that encompass us all. From Think Tank, is social science the God that failed? An interview with Seymour Martin Lipset and James Q. Wilson (1998). The introduction to The Myth of the Rational Voter: Why Democracies Choose Bad Policies by Bryan Caplan.

From LRB, Judith Butler reviews Hannah Arendt: The Jewish Writings, and more from The Jerusalem Post. How odd of God: A review of Jews and Gentiles by Milton Himmelfarb. A review of David Mamet's The Wicked Son: Anti-Semitism, Self-Hatred, and the Jews. He mocks the cultural elite and defends George Bush - at 77, Tom Wolfe is as contrary as ever.

From, Slavoj Zizek on Blows Against the Empire? Stephen Moss runs into Slavoj Zizek: The philosopher's moan. A review of Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar...: Understanding Philosophy through Jokes. Michael Caine is God: An article on the planned adaptation of Norwegian novelist Jostein Gaarder's international bestseller Sophie's World. Swanning about: Tim Radford on how metaphors are dangerous, especially when you don't think about what they mean. The Truth in Progress: It would be a mistake to abandon the idea of progress because history does not follow a linear path to social harmony or because most progress—though certainly not all—has an embarrassingly Western origin.

A review of The Meaning of Life by Terry Eagleton. A review of E. O. Wilson's The Creation: A Meeting of Science and Religion and Owen Gingerich's God’s Universe. God in the Details: For a quarter-century Roy Abraham Varghese has been assembling God proofs. Along the way he won over the world's most influential atheist. The concept of heaven remains attractive, opines Matthew Engel. Hell is altogether less marketable these days. A review of Sacred Bull, Holy Cow: A Cultural Study of Civilization's Most Important Animal.

Yeti crabs and vampire squids:A review of The Deep: The Extraordinary Creatures of the Abyss. Vets reject claims by a British animal welfare charity that giving dogs drugs to treat behavioural problems will create a population of "pill-popping pets".

From Cracked, here's A Beginner's Guide to Narcotics. A tiny molecule that promotes plant growth may hold the key to a family of new drugs for a whole range of illnesses in humans. Move over Wheaties, there's a new breakfast of champions: Cigars and coffee are the ideal combo. The duel life: Fencing's violent origins have evolved into a popular pastime.

From Radar, a photo tour of restricted spaces: Do Not Enter. Asymmetry and the next-gen umbrella: Designers finally reinvent the all-too-collapsible device. And the lightning bolt of embarrassment can leave you flushed, frozen and the memory can linger for years. But what makes it such a powerful emotion?