Fikret Elma and Sarvar Gurbanov (Qafqaz): Central Asia in the Globalization Process. Jorn Gravingholt (GDI): The Political Economy of Governance Reforms in Central Asia. Pavel K Baev (PRIO): How Afghanistan Was Broken: The Disaster of the Soviet Intervention. From Asia Times, Fabrizio Vielmini on how US risks chaos on “new Silk Road”. The first chapter from Warriors of the Cloisters: The Central Asian Origins of Science in the Medieval World by Christopher I. Beckwith. Eric McGlinchey on how the era of apparent political stability in Central Asia is coming to a close. Ilan Greenberg on the opacity of Central Asia. From Eurasianet, Joanna Lillis on Kazakhstan, where bling knows no bounds; and is Kazakhstan's Zhanaozen to be wiped off the map? Farangis Najibullah investigates. Joshua Kucera on Central Asia's zone of misfortune. Kyrgyzstan’s disappearing kindergartens: Preschool attendance is the basis for a successful education, but it’s a luxury many in this Central Asian country can no longer afford. Morgan Lerette on how Afghanistan will survive without us. Corruptistan: Meet the oil barons, fashion divas, and ruling families of Central Asia. Does a personality cult grow in Astana? Kazakhstan faces a three-fold problem when it comes to human trafficking.

Chris Jay Hoofnagle, Jennifer M. Urban, and Su Li (UC-Berkeley): Privacy and Advertising Mail. From Archeology, a look at the top 10 discoveries of 2012. Geoffrey Best reflects on a lifetime collecting books and the difficulties — emotional and financial — of parting with them. Israeli billionaire Dan Gertler — a friend of Congo's president — has amassed a fortune via private deals for mining assets in the world's most destitute nation. An interview with Jared Diamond, author of The World Until Yesterday: What Can We Learn from Traditional Societies? Guns and the pain economy: James Livingston on how love for the NRA and survivalism fits into an old pattern. Why won’t we talk about violence and masculinity in America? Soraya Chemaly wants to know. A rule is to break: A Child's Guide to Anarchy angers the Tea Party. From Cato Unbound, Howard Ball on physician assisted death in America: Ethics, law, and policy conflicts. In praise of empty souls: Martha Stout reviews The Wisdom of Psychopaths: What Saints, Spies, and Serial Killers Can Teach Us About Success by Kevin Dutton. Why are we afraid of homeless people? Madison Moore wonders.

From Johns Hopkins Magazine, publishing scientific research might help prevent the next pandemic, but there is legitimate fear that critical information could fall into the wrong hands. Can we stop modern-day mad scientists? Science is a risky business, argue leading researchers in a special Discover roundtable — you have to gamble big to win big. Elsa Moriarty on 6 elaborate science experiments done just for the hell of it. How might intellectual humility lead to scientific insight? W. Jay Wood wonders. Don't take it too hard: A study of scientific papers’ histories from submission to publication unearths some unexpected patterns. Joseph Grcar on comments and corrigenda in scientific literature: How self-correcting is the written record of scientific and engineering endeavors? From The New Atlantis, Matthew C. Rees looks back on the debates over Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions; and Joseph V. Kennedy on the sources and uses of U.S. science funding. Science’s Fantasy Island: Why biologist with big bucks Eric Peterson established a research base off the coast of Canada. Data do-gooder: Data-Kind unites scientists with social organizations to solve problems.

From the latest issue of Journal of Art Historiography, Francis Halsall (NCAD): Making and Matching: Aesthetic Judgement and the Production of Art Historical Knowledge; and Jenni Lauwrens (Pretoria): Welcome to the Revolution: The Sensory Turn and Art History. From NYRB, a review essay on Lincoln by James M. McPherson. Liberty is a slow fruit: Louis P. Masur on Lincoln the deliberate emancipator. Jonathan Chait on the bracing political reality of gun control (and more). What’s so funny? Tim Lewens reviews Inside Jokes: Using Humor to Reverse-engineer the Mind by Matthew M. Hurley, Daniel C. Dennett and Reginald B. Adams, Jr. Would being well-rounded and cosmopolitan mean that academic critics could lose their jobs, going the way of journalists, the dodo, and glaciers? From the latest issue of The Futurist, Patrick Tucker interviews Stephen Wolfram on science and a new kind of prediction. What does a climate scientist think of Glenn Beck's environmental-conspiracy novel, Agenda 21? Sue-Mari Maass on rent control — a comparative analysis. Lisa Downing reviews Dominatrix: Gender, Eroticism, and Control in the Dungeon by Danielle J. Lindemann.

From The American Prospect, a special issue on a Strategic Plan for Liberals: What’s the road map for a progressive future?; and Mike Konczal on the Great Society's Next Frontier: Now that Obamacare — the largest expansion of the social-safety net in the last 60 years — is safe, what's next for the liberal economic project? With the re-election of Barack Obama, the word “liberal” has suddenly reappeared in force. Liberalism is in crisis — and it’s one that conservatives shouldn’t let go to waste. Bhaskar Sunkara on Naomi Klein as “The Anarcho-Liberal”. Sheldon Richman on Rachel Maddow's blind deference to government power. Lawrence Lessig on why a Democratic Tea Party is the best hope for fixing corrupt government. From AlterNet, Bill Fletcher, Jr. and Carl Davidson on how the Left can become a true political force to be reckoned with. How big should the new Occupy be? A rebooted movement confronts a modern constraint. You can download Occupy Everything: Reflections on Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere, ed. Alessio Lunghi and Seth Wheeler. Shawn Gude on Occupy anti-politics: Even as we on the democratic left offer impassioned critiques of our political system we mustn’t eschew politics. Wes Vernon reviews 50 Things Liberals Love to Hate by Mike Gallagher.