From Governing, The Young and the Restless: There are proven ways to recruit and retain the emerging generation. Most states and localities don’t seem to know about them. From Government Executive, A Transformative Idea: In defense of a plan to create a U.S. Public Service Academy. Finding our way to great work: An article on Eleanor Roosevelt and the life of public service. Things can still only get better: Talk of moral decline shows that people still refuse to give up on the idea of a better world. Does capitalism make us more materialistic? Ben O'Neill investigates. A review of The Billionaire Who Wasn’t: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune by Conor O’Clery. Who’s the most charitable of us all? Celebrities don’t always make the cut. A review of Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World by Bill Clinton. And for My Second Act, I’ll Make Some Money: Athletes do it. So do movie stars. Why not former presidents? 

Charles de Bartolome (Colorado) and Stephen Ross (Connecticut): The Race to the Suburb: The Location of the Poor in a Metropolitan Area. The first chapter from The Silent Majority: Suburban Politics in the Sunbelt South by Matthew D. Lassiter. Not in Whose Backyard? America’s poorest neighborhoods are also its most polluted. What can be done? Scientists find out gentrification is bad for you: At a time when we hail creativity as an urban panacea from New York to Toronto, from Berlin to Shanghai, those who research the downside of gentrification, and expose social exclusion and marginalization will not go silently into the urban night. A review of Robert Moses and the Modern City by Hilary Ballon and Kenneth T. Jackson. The Morphing Megalopolis: In the 1950s, the urban corridor from Boston to Washington looked like a radical innovation in human settlement.

Harold Southerland (FSU): Love for Sale: Sex and the Second American Revolution. Libby Adler (Northeastern): The Dignity of Sex. From TLS, a review of In Praise of the Whip: A cultural history of arousal by Niklaus Largier. Wide-Stance Sociology: A legendary social science book is back in the news. Scott McLemee looks at a controversial classic, Tearoom Trade: Impersonal Sex in Public Places by Laud Humphreys. So Many Men's Rooms, So Little Time: Christopher Hitchens on why men like Larry Craig continue to court danger in public places. Gay By Choice? An article on the Science of Sexual Identity: If science proves sexual orientation is more fluid than we've been led to believe, can homosexuality still be a protected right? The Larry Craig story, combining as it does the libidinal and the scatological, has been a comic bonanza. Larry Craig's downfall: In 20 years, the sexual issues and tensions that led to Craig's demise will not matter anymore.

David Hugh-Jones (Essex): Federalism and Democratic Forms. Chris Bonneau (Pittsburgh): The United States Supreme Court: Continuity and Change. Mark Tushnet (Harcard): The Rights Revolution. Scott Shapiro (Michigan): The Hart-Dworkin Debate: A Short Guide to the Perplexed. Brian Z. Tamanaha (St. John's): Understanding Legal Pluralism: Past to Present, Local to Global. Brian Bix (Minnestota): Law as an Autonomous Discipline. Steven Douglas Smith (San Diego): Jurisprudence: Beyond Extinction? An interview with Steven Smith, author of Law's Quandary. If you are looking for the future of legal scholarship, chances are that you may find it not in a treatise or the traditional law review but in a different form, profoundly influenced by the blogosphere. A review of The Constitutionalist: Notes on the First Amendment by George Anastaplo.

From Metapsychology, a review of Neuroscience and Philosophy: Brain, Mind, and Language by Maxwell Bennett, Peter Hacker, Daniel Dennett, and John Searle; a review of Neuroethics. A review of Cerebrum 2007: Emerging Ideas in Brain Science; a review of The Accidental Mind: How Brain Evolution Has Given Us Love, Memory, Dreams, and God by David J. Linden; and a review of How the Body Shapes the Way We Think: A New View of Intelligence by Rolf Pfeifer and Josh C. Bongard. Mind Over Manual: Despite the great progress being made in neuroscience, we still don’t have a clear picture of the brain mechanisms underlying most mental illnesses. Low Technologies, High Aims: MIT has nurtured dozens of Nobel Prize winners in cerebral realms, but lately it has turned its attention toward concrete thinking to improve the lives of the poor.

The Washington Post asks educators, lawmakers and others for their views of No Child Left Behind, and what might improve it. Teaching Past the Test: Schools are leveraging data collected for No Child Left Behind to improve individual student performance. Students have real-life problems too: Grades and learning often pale in comparison to the hard-luck realities faced outside the classroom. You and Your Quirky Kid: What parents and experts say about the children who just don't fit in. An interview with William J. Bennett on all things education. Maryland's Joppatowne High School became the first school in the country dedicated to churning out would-be Jack Bauers. An interview with Abigail Jones and Marissa Miley, authors of Restless Virgins: Love, Sex, and Survival at a New England Prep School. Come Back, Mr. Chips: Stereotyping, low pay, lack of role models. Why the number of men teaching in schools is at a 40-year low.

From BBC Magazine, one of literature's great conspiracy theories has new impetus with Sir Derek Jacobi questioning whether William Shakespeare of Stratford really wrote the works associated with him. So what are the arguments for and against this man really being the Bard? The introduction to Shakespeare's Wife by Germaine Greer. A review of Defining the World: The Extraordinary Story of Dr. Johnson's Dictionary by Henry Hitchings (and an excerpt). 175 years after the death of Scotland’s most celebrated novelist, Murray Pittock asks if Walter Scott was an enemy of the Enlightenment, or its champion. A review of Scotland's Books by Robert Crawford.  He's seen it all: They don't call him "Famous Seamus" for nothing - the Nobel Prize-winner has won the Whitbread twice and sells more books in Britain than any other living poet. 

From Ralph, a review of American Windmills: An Album of Historic Photographs; a review of Past Tents: The Way We Camped by Susan Snyder. A review of Guerrilla Gardening: A Manualfesto, by David Tracey. Climbing trees, and reading about them, is back in fashion. From high in the canopy, Robert Macfarlane finds a new perspective on our need to reconnect with nature, and more on The Wild Places by Robert Macfarlane. A review of The Volcano Adventure Guide by Rosaly Lopes. A review of Marshes: The Disappearing Edens by William Burt. A review of The Unnatural History of the Sea by Callum Roberts. A review of The Most Important Fish in the Sea Menhaden and America by H. Bruce Franklin. A review of Jonathan Miles’s The Wreck of the Medusa: The Most Famous Sea Disaster of the Nineteenth Century

From HNN, an article on the Saudi Billionaire vs. Cambridge University Press. The University of Michigan Press halts — but may resume — the distribution of Overcoming Zionism by Joel Kovel, a book published in Britain arguing that creation of Israel was a mistake. Thanks, Mr. Nabokov: A trove of rejection files from Alfred A. Knopf Inc. includes dismissive verdicts on the likes of Jorge Luis Borges (“utterly untranslatable”) and Sylvia Plath (“There certainly isn’t enough genuine talent for us to take notice”). Reading serious non-fiction books about current and pressing issues — apart from name-calling books by political hacks and right-wing bitches with flowing Breck-girl hair — is on its deathbed. From Britannica, an article on guilty pleasure books: Mysteries, True Crime Books and Best-Selling “Trash”: Hidden in a Brown-Paper Wrapper. Could you read 100 novels in 100 days?

Oona Hathaway (Yale): International Delegation and State Sovereignty. As Undiplomatic Activities by Richard Woolcott reveals, the world of international diplomacy is full of bizarre pratfalls.  Here are the worst countries in the world, according to the Failed States Index — all 10 are violent, miserable, corrupt and poor, with the traits that vault them ahead of other notorious shitholes. Deaths by numbers: Is it all right for humanitarian aid workers to tell lies and mislead people in a "good cause"? Forced labour: 200 years since it was abolished, slavery is not only still happening, it’s actually increasing all over the world. A review of Enslaved: True Stories of Modern Day Slavery by Jesse Sage and Liora Kasten and After Abolition. Britain and the Slave Trade since 1807 by Marika Sherwood. A review of International Prosecution of Human Rights Crimes

From Democratiya, an excerpt from The Truth About Syria by Barry Rubin. Policing religion: There are signs that Saudi society may finally have had enough of the country's draconian religious police. A review of Rethinking Global Sisterhood: Western Feminism and Iran by Nima Naghibi. Molding the Ideal Islamic Citizen: Enjoy sex (in marriage), and abstain from dissent. Iran shapes a national identity. From Asia Times, Spengler on the discreet charm of US diplomacy. The US appears to be relying on imported friendliness. Does this mean it is running out of "nice"? Wars That Defy Categorization: The war in Iraq, 9/11 attacks and the Iranian Revolution pose challenges for Western imagination. From Slate, The House Tosses Softballs to Gen. Petraeus. That's More Like It! The Senate grills Petraeus and Crocker. A top general's dilemma: Gen. David Howell Petraeus is the wrong man fighting the wrong enemy in the wrong country. 

A Legacy Bush Can Control: Every president issues “midnight regulations” in the twilight of the term. In the waning days of the Bush administration expect a wave of them. A look at why Bush's architect is a perfect match for his presidency. John Dean on understanding the contemporary Republican Party: Authoritarians have taken control. What's Not The Matter With Kansas: A fratricidal GOP and a rapidly expanding Democratic electorate have made the one-time red state politically competitive. Is "Voter Purging" a legal way for Republicans to swing elections? Now the Department of Justice, like the Republican Party, wants fewer registered voters in 2008. Who’s Your Daddy Now? Lost, stubborn, and surly, the GOP is rapidly rebranding itself as the bad-dad party. But can the Dems finally ditch their soft-mommy rep? Linda Hirshman on why Democrats should embrace the philosophy of Liberalism

From Monthly Review, Who said Marx wasn't green? No amount of "tinkering" with the system will solve things, and, in fact, "tinkering" will increase the speed of the slide toward ecological catastrophe. Personal Choices Won't Save the Planet: All our individual efforts to limit our eco-footprints won't amount to squat if they aren't accompanied by major political action. A review of Break Through: From the Death of Environmentalism to the Politics of Possibility by Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger. Tim Flannery reviews Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist's Guide to Global Warming by Bjorn Lomborg. Geoengineering is the Future: The deliberate modification of the Earth's environment will receive ever more attention as the steep and unavoidable costs of mitigating carbon emissions become more obvious. Here's why. 

From NYRB, They're Micromanaging Your Every Move: A review of The Social Life of Information by John Seely Brown and Paul Duguid; Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream by Barbara Ehrenreich; and The Culture of the New Capitalism by Richard Sennett. Don't blame Wal-Mart, we're getting what we ask for: A review of Supercapitalism The Transformation of Business, Democracy and Everyday Life by Robert Reich (and more and two interviews). The stock market is just a single indicator that often has little do with the health of a very large economy. Wall Street is not Main Street. Wherever there are problems, people look for villains. The subprime mortgage crisis is a case in point. Supply Side Bait and Switch: Politicians promoting the sham of supply-side economics are foolish, but their economic advisors should know better. Globalism and Barbie's behind: The posterior of America's favorite doll can teach your kids a lot about economics.

From ZNet, an article on The New Atheism. From Christianity Today, an article on The Future of Atheism: Damned if you don't, damned if you don't. A new issue of New English Review is out, including Theodore Dalrymple on How To Hate The Non-Existent. Daydream believers: As the numbers of artificial belief systems boom and clamour for recognition, are they close to collapsing beneath the weight of their own foolishness? Getting Religion: A review of Divided by God: America’s Church-State Problem—and What We Should Do About It, by Noah Feldman. Prisons Purging Books on Faith From Libraries: Chaplains in federal prisons have been quietly carrying out a systematic purge of religious books and materials. Legal groups putting God on the docket: Christian advocacy is flourishing as new law field for faithful. Ousted Alabama "Commandments Judge" Roy Moore is waging war on Church-State separation - - and you won't believe the far-out folks who are helping him.

From Parrhesia, Friedrich Balke (Cologne): Restating Sovereignty: On America’s Regaining the Old Sense of the Political; Clare Blackburne (King's): (Up) Against the (In) Between: Interstitial Spatiality in Genet and Derrida; Patrick French (King's): Friendship, Assymetry, Sacrifice: Bataille and Blanchot; Marguerite La Caze (Queensland): Sartre Integrating Ethics and Politics: The Case of Terrorism; Nina Power (Middlesex): Philosophy's Subjects; new horizons in mathematics as a philosophical condition: An interview with Alain Badiou; a review of Husserl: A Guide for the Perplexed by Matheson Russell; and a review of The Aesthetic Paths of Philosophy: Presentation in Kant, Heidegger, Lacoue-Labarthe and Nancy by Alison Ross. A review of Aesthetics and Cognition in Kant's Critical Philosophy. A review of Husserl by David Woodruff Smith.

E. O. Wilson on how the Encyclopedia of Life, a new project in biology, should make it possible to discover the remaining 90 percent of species in perhaps a single human generation. Girls Gone Boys Gone Wild: Altering a mouse's sense of smell can seriously mess with its gender identity. Behavioral Science Turns to Dogs for Answers: For a long time, domesticated dogs were seen as just the slobbering, dumbed-down ancestor of the wild wolf. Dogs, though, have learned a few tricks of their own through the millennia — and can teach us a lot about ourselves. It's no secret that we humans are smarter than our primate relatives. But exactly how are we smarter? Higher social skills are distinctly human, toddler and ape study reveals. Will super smart artificial intelligences keep humans around as pets? And other questions from the Singularity Summit.

Glenn A. Davis (ASES): Irving Babbitt, the Moral Imagination, and Progressive Education. For forging higher ideas in young minds, there's nothing like the classics of Western civilization. Eric Foner on Changing History: After 9/11, the history we teach should be a conversation with the entire world, not a complacent dialogue with ourselves. This year, a record number of student activists have been found guilty of terrorist crimes. As the new academic year begins, a look at how universities are dealing with the challenge. Many academics on the supposedly progressive side do not admit that everything they value is intolerable to radical Islam. A tenure bid by Nadia Abu El-Haj, a professor at Barnard, has put Columbia once again at the center of a struggle over scholarship on the Middle East. An interview with Norman Finkelstein, who resigned from DePaul . Ban the bombers? Freedom to Teach: Michael Berube writes about why the AAUP’s new statement on freedom in the classroom matters so much.

From FT, this time it’s personal V.S. Naipaul’s prose is elegant and spare. One of the best writers living today, why does he allow his pettiness to get in the way? A review of A Writer’s People: Ways of Looking and Feeling. From Christianity Today, a review of In a Cardboard Belt! Essays Personal, Literary, and Savage by Joseph Epstein. From The Mises Institute, an essay on The Great Capitalist Novel. A review of Heroes: The Champions of Our Literary Imagination by Bruce Meyer. From Reason, an article on Robert Heinlein at 100: How the science fiction master created the template for our looser, hipper, more pluralist world. One-Hit Wonders: What’s a superhero worth these days, anyway? We may soon be able to scale vertical walls like Spider-man thanks to scientists. What other superhero characteristics are achievable for mere mortals?

From NYRB, the dreamlike paintings of the German artist Neo Rauch are as mystifying and enigmatic as those of any artist at work today, although his figurative scenes, carnivalesque in their rich, surprising colors and tricky shifts from the real to the fantastic, are also among the likeliest to grab the attention of twelve-year-olds. From Forward, an article on Pissarro’s Unquiet Pastoral. A review of Evocative Objects: Things We Think With, ed. Sherry Turkle.  And God created the artist... or was it the other way around? Ever since the dawn of civilisation, artists have been in competition with the gods. The hand-made tale: In cultural terms, authenticity is all-important. But it has always been a tricky notion, a blurry concept even more complex in the contemporary art world. Culture, done right, can be a cash cow for cities: A review of The Warhol Economy by Elizabeth Currid. 

Inspiring modernity: Does Toronto have a fashion scene? Has the Canadian city once described as "New York run by the Swiss" and "Canada’s Big Apple" finally outclassed its American counterpart? The spread of the fashion bug: Fashion and infectious diseases have a lot in common. It’s the same bug, transmitted from New York to London to Milan to Paris, now spreading exponentially; and new notions of what is luxurious are not about brands or even money, but about experience, rarity and wonder: An excerpt from Deluxe: How Luxury Lost its Lustre by Dana Thomas (and more). The Big Brand Theory: More and more young designers are gambling on the mass market. But is it all risk and no profit? The Knockoff Won’t Be Knocked Off: With media coverage of fashion so broad and instantaneous, consumers have been conditioned to seek out the latest styles — and they expect more for less.

From Democratiya, a review of War Law: Understanding International Law and Armed Conflict by Michael Byers and Of War and Law by David Kennedy. A review of An Instinct for War: Scenes from the Battlefields of History by Roger Spiller. A review of The Eye of Command by Kimberly Kagan. A review of Making War to Keep Peace by Jeane J. Kirkpatrick. A review of Where War Lives by Paul Watson. The first chapter from While Dangers Gather: Congressional Checks on Presidential War Powers by William G. Howell and Jon C. Pevehouse. A review of In the Common Defense : National Security Law for Perilous Times by James E. Baker. A review of The Terror Presidency: Law and Judgment Inside the Bush Administration by Jack L. Goldsmith (and more and more and an excerpt and an excerpt).

Ashton B. Carter (Harvard), Michael M. May and William J. Perry (Stanford): The Day After: Action Following a Nuclear Blast in a U.S. City. A review of Annihilation From Within: The Ultimate Threat to Nations by Fred Charles Ikle. Why have some states sought nuclear weapons whereas others have shunned them? The introduction to Nuclear Logics: Contrasting Paths in East Asia and the Middle East by Etel Solingen. An interview with Harry Helms, author of Top Secret Tourism: Your Travel Guide to Germ Warfare Laboratories, Clandestine Aircraft Bases and Other Places in the United States You’re Not Supposed to Know About. From Der Spiegel, an interview with Mohamed ElBaradei: "We are moving rapidly towards an abyss". A review of Doomsday Men: The Real Dr. Strangelove and the Dream of the Superweapon by P.D. Smith. A review of Incendiary Circumstances: A Chronicle of the Turmoil of Our Times by Amitav Ghosh.

From GQ, Donald Rumsfeld, the much maligned former secretary of defense, talks about his time in office—and insists he has nothing to apologize for; and Colin Powell was pushed aside in the run-up to war, but as he tells Walter Isaacson, he, too, bears some of the blame. Who disbanded the Iraqi Army? And why was nobody held accountable? From TNR, finally, it all makes sense! An article on the important Iraq reports summarized. What Congress needs to ask Petraeus and Crocker: If we're staying in Iraq, we need to know why. The Real Message? We're Screwed: Forget Petraeus. It's Ambassador Crocker's glum assessment that made an impact. From National Journal, with America distracted in Iraq and deeply divided at home, some experts see the current atmosphere as unusually ripe for strategic surprises

From Democracy, After Iraq: A Symposium: The invasion and occupation of Iraq have profoundly changed the entire region. Once U.S. troops do come home, what comes next? What should American strategy be in the Middle East? Planning for Defeat: How and when should the U.S. leave Iraq? George Packer investigates. Washington's serious stars: US foreign policy experts who got the Iraq war badly wrong are still somehow holding sway. Can lobbyists stop the war? Conference calls and e-mail messages to Congress have mostly replaced antiwar demonstrations and street theater. But it’s not clear if that makes for a more effective protest movement. From American Heritage, a look at how Iran and Iraq made peace—and America lost. The Myth of AQI: Fighting al-Qaeda in Iraq is the last big argument for keeping U.S. troops in the country. But the military's estimation of the threat is alarmingly wrong. A review of The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual.

A review of Dead Certain: The Presidency of George W. Bush by Robert Draper. A review of Broken Government: How Republican Rule Destroyed the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches by John Dean. Republicans do not need to debate who is conservative enough. They need to argue about what conservatism is. Conservatism as a philosophy no longer produces ready-made answers to the quandaries that face the country or the voters. America the Ugly: Norman Podhoretz on the politics of the left. A review of The Fall-Out: How a Guilty Liberal Lost His Innocence by Andrew Anthony. Paul Starr on why red scare attacks on liberalism are red herrings. Breaking the Game: Politics might just be a game, but it's still broken. Ideology is back with a vengeance, and psychologists are willing to study it, even if sociologists and political scientists are still reticent. A study suggests that some political divides may be hard-wired (and more).

Is there anything good about men? A look at how culture exploits men. Sensitivity's slippery slope: On the absurd overtures bowing down to men of violence. Why men should be included in abortion discussion: Locking men out of conversations about abortion often comes at a great expense. An interview with Lisa Jean Moore, author of Sperm Counts: Overcome by Man's Most Precious Fluid. Not Just for Erections: On the 15th anniversary of the little pill that changed sex lives around the world, a look at Viagra's many other uses. Over the last six years, hundreds of teenage boys have been expelled or felt compelled to leave the polygamous settlement that straddles Colorado City, Ariz., and Hildale, Utah. Thong politics: The history of shortsighted laws to control young people's underpants. Us Against Phlegm The quest to discover why men spit so much. Ptooey!

From The New Humanist, a review of The Bible: A Biography by Karen Armstrong. An interview with Robert Alter, editor of The Book of Psalms. A review of Decline and Change in Late Antiquity: Religion, Barbarians and their Historiography by J.H.W.G. Liebeschuetz. A review of The Early Christian Book by  William E. Klingshirn and Linda Safran. A review of Praeambula Fidei: Thomism and the God of the Philosophers by Ralph McInerny. Ludwig Andreas von Feuerbach was the man who brought religion down to earth. When worlds collide: Scientists must not indulge mysticism.  Christopher Brookmyre explains why his latest book is dedicated to Dawkins, Randi and the debunkers of pseudo-science. John Allen Paulos on mathematics, religion and evolution in school curricula. 

From Edge, Country Life in Connecticut: Six scientists find the future in genetic engineering. Michael Sandel on Designer Babies: "There’s a growing debate about what limits, if any, should be put on genetic engineering". Carl Zimmer on The Meaning of Life: We create life, we search for it, we manipulate and revere it. Is it possible that we haven't yet defined the term? Genome 2.0: Detailed explorations of the human genome are showing that individual genes may have complex structures, and that much of what had been called junk DNA is not junk at all. Study finds evidence of genetic response to diet: It is becoming clear that the human genome responds to changes in diet, even though it takes many generations to do so. A review of The Immortalists: Charles Lindhbergh, Dr. Alexis Carrel and Their Daring Quest to Live Forever by David M. Friedman (and more).

A review of The New Time Travellers: A Journey to the Frontiers of Physics by David Toomey. From Popular Mechanics, where will the next 50 years in space take us? Leading thinkers from Buzz Aldrin (a robot fan) to Arthur C. Clarke (he wants a sub-orbital joyride) on where they think the half-century ahead could lead. The Mix Tape of the Gods: Contemplation of Voyager’s billion-year future among the stars may make us feel small and the span of our history seem insignificant. Not in my back yard: Private efforts to avert disaster in space. Baptistina's terrible daughters: Astronomers have traced the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs (and more). Digging for Dinos in the Land of Genghis Khan: Can a first-time dinosaur hunter make it through a dig in Mongolia? The asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs 65 million years ago was a wayward fragment from a violent collision in the asteroid belt.