From New Statesman, a review of You Don't Love Me Yet by Jonathan Lethem. The seven stories that comprise Walk the Blue Fields explore the abyss that separates men and women. From Financial Times, the stereotyping of Japanese women is rife but Kickboxing Geishas, a compelling collection of interviews, reveals the true picture.

From Forward, juggler of the moral and the aesthetic: A review of At the Same Time: Essays & Speeches by Susan Sontag; and an interview with Hungarian writer György Konrád, oracle of humanism's survival. Slavoj Zizek on how The Lives of Others fails to capture the true horror of the GDR. The god of war is my muse: The Nobel Prize-winning writer Wole Soyinka tells Helen Oyeyemi why literature must struggle against injustice. Scathing and scurrilous opinions are the stock in trade of author Gore Vidal. Serve lunch and stand well back.

A review of Chaucer's Queer Poetics: Rereading the Dream Trio. Boris Akunin spent 20 years translating novels before deciding to write his own. What's the point? An article on summer reading on the arts. From Salon, a review of Where's My Jetpack? A Guide to the Amazing Science Fiction Future That Never Arrived by Daniel H. Wilson. From The Chronicle, can one Rudolf Steiner fan be wrong? Particularly if it's Saul Bellow? Carlin Romano investigates. A post-office box in Fayette, West Virginia, is the backdrop for Famous Writers School, a hugely enjoyable satire on writers and writing. Dear Book Doctor, I keep saying that I’m only going to stay one more year, but I never leave. Is there any escape?

An interview with Howard Zinn on American newspapers’ winnowing down of book reviews. The Bookish Set: LA Weekly goes inside the indie booksellers. Mental floss? More like mental fluff. This magazine is full of trivia, and while most of it is far from useless, the stuff nevertheless gets wadded into the back of your mind, only to be pulled out for special occasions. Small Magazines, Big Ideas: An impending rate hike could silence small independent magazines of all political stripes that make a key contribution to the conversation of democracy. The price of cast iron: Few people notice Reuters, but it is a very big player in global news and its independence matters. An interview with Joseph Farah, author of Stop the Presses!: The Inside Story of the New Media Revolution.

From First Monday, what is popular on Wikipedia and why? Philip Rosedale, the founder of the virtual world Second Life, believes that his company, Linden Lab, is at the forefront of the internet's next big revolution: The 3D web. The first comprehensive global survey of Internet filtering shows that online repression is on the rise worldwide.

From Canada, the glass house is getting crowded: Why are so many MPs so fond of Neville Chamberlain?; an interview with Preston Manning, the former Reform leader, on what he thinks of Canada's new government; behind the razzle-dazzle, Expo '67 was a prototype for the kind of society Canada wanted to become, and by some measures it got there; a reviews Holding the Bully's Coat: Canada and the U.S. Empire; and civility and other such nonsense: In praise of well-meaning politicians saying increasingly crazy things. From Australia, a review of Detainee 002: The case of David Hicks, and a review of Rob Riley: An Aboriginal Leader’s Quest for Justice. An article on Fiji, 1987-2007: The story of four coups for 20 years.

From Seven Oaks, a review of books on various Africas. African leaders recently chose Zimbabwe to chair the UN Commission on Sustainable Development: Why Africa won't rein in Mugabe. Economic freedom in Africa: Where has all the progress gone? A review of The Invisible Cure: AIDS in Africa by Helen Epstein (and more). Why Ethiopia parties like it's 1999: Well, because it is still 1999 according to the Julian calendar. The standoff between Anjouan's local authorities and the Comoros Union government remains unresolved. Upcoming elections and Comoran unity hang in the balance.

An article on ideology in China: Confucius makes a comeback. Declassified Documents on the Malaysian riots of 1969 presents the view that 1969 race riots were instigated by ambitious Malay politicians. Now it seems the book will be banned by the government.  From Radical Notes, an article on the growing revolt against disposability: New dimensions of resistance to corporate globalization in India. A review of In Quest of Jinnah, Jinnah: Creator of Pakistan, M. A. Jinnah and In Command of History: Churchill Fighting and Writing the Second World War.

From Boston Review, a special section on Nukes, Democracy and Iran, including The View from Tehran: Akbar Ganji on changing Iran from within;  Nuclear Freeze Hans Blix on the Middle East and global arms control; Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns on carrots and sticks; and Michael McFaul and Abbas Milani on how normalizing relations will help both sides. From Asia Times, an appeal for empire: A review of Theology of Discontent: The Ideological Foundation of the Islamic Revolution in Iran by Hamid Dabashi; and who will be the 21st century equivalent of Saladin, the greatest warrior of Islam? An interview with Augustus Richard Norton, author of Hezbollah: A Short History. An interview with Olivier Roy, author of Globalized Islam: The Search for a New Umma.

From Open Democracy, a developed view of multiculturalism can complement democratic citizenship and nation-building. And darn it, and face up to the global village: Ever-more global communities are making increasingly strong claims on our lives over our immediate surroundings

Jack Balkin (Yale): Original Meaning and Constitutional Redemption. Seth Barrett Tillman on Noncontemporaneous Lawmaking: Can the 110th Senate Enact a Bill Passed By the 109th House?; Aaron-Andrew P.Bruhl on Against Mix-and-Match Lawmaking; and a reply. An interview with Brian Leiter on Legal Philosophy: 5 Questions.

From Global Law Books, a review of Towards World Constitutionalism: Issues in the Legal Ordering of the World Community, a review of The Limits of International Law, and a review of War, Aggression and Self-Defence. A review of The Philosophy of War and Peace by Jenny Teichman. A review of Why Not Kill Them All? The Logic and Prevention of Mass Political Murder by Daniel Chirot and Clark McCauley. A review of Idealist Political Philosophy: Pluralism and Conflict in the Absolute Idealist Tradition. A review of Pierre Gassendi and the Birth of Early Modern Philosophy. An interview with Harvard's Elizabeth Warren on law, politics and the coming collapse of the middle class.

From Econ Journal Watch, Daron Acemoglu says the economic analysis of constitutions and political structure has been revolutionized by Torsten Persson and Guido Tabellini. But Charles Blankart and Gerrit Koester argue that the new political economics is not that new, and might be a step backwards; development economics has discovered important truths about trade, aid, property, and planning. Ian Vasquez recounts how the truths were pioneered in the work of Peter Bauer, and how the late-comers often neglect that learning; Dan D’Amico and Dan Klein examine the websites of Harvard and George Mason economists, and ask whether the differences speak of differences in character type; and where would Adam Smith publish today? Daniel Sutter and Rex Pjesky show that almost no math-free research appears in top economics journals pdf.

From LRB, Jerry Fodor reviews Consciousness and Its Place in Nature: Does Physicalism Entail Panpsychism? by Galen Strawson and et al. A review of Hours with the Mystics by Robert Alfred Vaughan. A review of Flock of Dodos: Behind Modern Creationism, Intelligent Design, and the Easter Bunny. A database of his letters reveal Darwin's caring, comic side - - in between agonising about his theory. Scientists are reaching a new consensus on the origins and mechanisms of morality, and evolutionary, neurological and social psychological insights are being synthesized in support of three principles. Security check: Why conservatives had happy childhoods but liberals have more sex. Whether it be a hand on the shoulder or a warm embrace, physical contact matters to us all.

Silicon Brains: Computer chips designed to mimic how the brain works could shed light on our cognitive abilities. A look at how fruit flies have displayed rudimentary free will. Fathoming out evolution: A survey of the Weddell Sea uncovers extraordinary biological diversity. Hail Linnaeus: Conservationists—and polar bears—should heed the lessons of economics. From Edge, an interview with Neil Turok on the cyclic universe. A set of results from the Hubble space telescope suggest that dark matter may finally have been “seen”. An interview with Marc Abrahams of the Annals of Improbable Research.

From Slate, You U: How do you start your own university? Man creates online Virginia Tech game, lets the player become the killer. And what's wrong with Arabic-language public schools? Amity Shlaes wants to know

From Conversations With History, an interview with Chalmers Johnson, author of Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic, an interview with Niall Ferguson, author of The War of the World: Twentieth Century Conflict and the Descent of the West, and an interview with John Micklethwait on globalization and the conservative movement in the US.

"When we get big, you can expect that from the other side": Harmon Leon infiltrates a right wing protest group. Theocons of the World, Unite! A review of The Enemy at Home: The Cultural Left and Its Responsibility for 9/11 by Dinesh D'Souza.

From Eureka Street, why militant anti-theism is a God-send. Michael Novak on why Christopher Hitchens is a treasure. Jerry Falwell, whose foul rantings prove you can get away with anything if you have "Reverend" in front of your name, is best known for crusading against abortion and homosexuality. But early on, he skillfully used race to galvanize the Christian right, though his successors in the Christian right learned the lesson he never did: how to brand and commodify faith for pop cultural consumption. God without the godfather: How will the religious right get on without Falwell? The Accidental Modernist: An article on the real legacy of Jerry Falwell. A review of The Culturally Savvy Christian: A Manifesto for Deepening Faith and Enriching Popular Culture in an Age of Christianity-Lite.

Tribal Relations: How Americans really sort out on cultural and religious issues—and what it means for our politics. How to be a hippy fascist: An interview with James Delingpole, author How To Be Right: The Essential Guide to Making Lefty Liberals History. Do Republicans still care about social issues? Ramesh Ponnuru and Thomas B. Edsall debate. The Scorecard: There isn't a scorecard of social injustice that makes one group more worthy of equality than others.

How to run against a woman: Thanks to a certain New York senator's presidential candidacy, the battle for the hearts, minds, and votes of America's women has never been trickier. Why are baying men still telling women what to do with their bodies? Ian Bell wants to know. Porn Again: Garance Franke-Ruta on how the new pornographers are exploiting young women, and why liberals should care. A review of Adolescent Sexuality: A Historical Handbook and Guide. Porn for the People: Each day, thousands of suburban sybarites videotape themselves doing the nasty, then post their efforts on the Web.

Lily, Wills and the rest of the world: Our sense of what is private and what is public has change since the advent of MySpace, and other social networking sites. The Decline and Fall of the Private Self: Today's tell-all bloggers and MySpace denizens have made the notion of a guarded personal life feel obsolete. What effect does such exposure have on the psyche? The Therapeutic Culture: Yale Kramer on how we coddle the mentally ill (and responses). The fact is simple: happiness cannot be taught, any more than loyalty can, or truthfulness. How to lose friends and influence politics: A review of Friendship and Betrayal: Ambition and the Limits of Loyalty. A review of A Crowd of One: The Future of Individual Identity (and more).

On the Origin of Grandmas: They pinch your cheeks, knit you sweaters and feed you mountains of mashed potatoes. Is that why you're still alive? Joseph Epstein on Death Benefits: That lives have strikingly different beginnings and wildly various middles, but all have the same ending has a calming effect. And recovering the Disappeared: How do you memorialize people who vanish?

From Spiked, the "disorganised apartheid" of cultural diversity: A review of The Nature of the Beast: Cultural Diversity and the Visual Arts Sector. Fright fans love to praise the visionary efforts of their favorite horror directors. But behind every great terror auteur is usually an unsung macabre master.

From Outlook India, a review of Bollywood: A History. Singapore's Undiscovered Virtuoso: Could a barroom singer-guitarist in Singapore be music's next great discovery? Seattle's Best (and Worst): What happens when architecture pays attention to its surroundings (and when it doesn't). A review of Early Medieval Architecture as Bearer of Meaning. A review of Robert Bevan's The Destruction of Memory: Architecture at War.

From Asian Review of Books, two recent novels pose very different answers to the same question: how does a writer attempt to make sense out of an act of senseless violence? Form Mute, the Dutch are weeping in four universal pictorial languages at least: Marina Vishmidt assesses Otto Neurath's attempt to bridge the world between art and non-art in the terms of current debate and draws a materialist line under any positivistic expectations of the exhibition as research. In Praise of Pageantry: Art and activism together facilitate a larger discussion of politics and theory while reinspiring activists who are tired of the same old marches.

A 1920s Russian literary movement celebrating experimental narratives and absurdism never survived Stalin's reign: A review of The Last Soviet Avant-Garde: OBERIU—Fact, Fiction, Metafiction and OBERIU: An Anthology of Russian Absurdism. The double Prussia: Volker Ullrich is full of praise for Christopher Clark's masterpiece on the Hohenzollern state of Prussia. Czech Book: A retrospective volume summarizes the dark genius of Josef Koudelka. The origins of magic symbols in the highlands of the Caucasus: A review of Tattooed Mountain Women and Spoon Boxes of Daghestan: Magic medicine symbols in silk, stone, wood and flesh.

From TNR, James Wood reviews The Road by Cormac McCarthy. When the Sixties were stifling rather than Swinging: A review of Ian McEwan’s On Chesil Beach. A review of The Shipping News by E. Annie Proulx. An interview with Janine Latus, author of If I am Missing or Dead: A Sister’s Story of Love, Murder and Liberation. From LRB, a review of Can Any Mother Help Me: Fifty Years of Friendship through a Secret Magazine by Jenna Bailey.

The editor of US Vogue Anna Wintour has long attracted opprobrium, but this is ridiculous. An interview with Lewis Lapham, former editor of Harper's. After more than 50 years American Heritage, the magazine that furnished not just the minds but the dens of generations of American history buffs, is suspending publication. As long as the country's media barons enjoy public capital, the public should have a voice—and a vote. The Bancrofts and their ilk have too long espoused democracy everywhere but at home. A review of Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair's End Times: The Death of the Fourth Estate.

Improving on Wikipedia? A new project called Digital Universe aims to make information on the Web better organized and more authoritative. Digg, Reddit, Netscape: Are they the wisdom of crowds or mob rule? And should publishers outsource journalism? A California Web publisher's plan to outsource his site's newswriting to India illustrates a too-common attitude infecting journalism today. And after living in her car for nine months, Anya Peters went from homeless blogger to published author in the blink of an eye

The Teflon Taoiseach: Bertie Ahern took office within weeks of Tony Blair and after 10 years toil, the pair have finally seen peace in Northern Ireland. Mr Blair is stepping down, but his opposite number in Dublin hopes for a second decade in power. What should Gordon Brown do to maximize the chances of Labour achieving a fourth term? Anthony Giddens has some ideas. How much is left of the left? Despite the lack of opposition to Gordon Brown, New Labour's roots are still shallow. A review of The Radical Right in Britain: Social Imperialism to the BNP.

The super judge: Powerful French anti-terrorism judge Jean-Louis Bruguiere believes his country's tough justice system has much to offer other nations in fighting the war on terror. Sex, lies and politics, the French way: They're less prone to adultery than Americans but more forgiving when their politicians philander. A malaise-ridden France just elected the most pro-American president in its history. But Nicolas Sarkozy’s victory doesn’t mean the French are eager to see their socialist perks disappear in a flurry of Anglo-Saxon reforms. Friend or Faux? Olivier Roy on how Nicolas Sarkozy may not be what the French call a “libéral,” but he’s no neocon, either. Immanuel Wallerstein on France and the end of Gaullism.

We want our Europe back! A comparison between the Berlin and the Rome Declarations. The burden of history: Its newest members offer the European Union some history lessons. America and Europe confront a new freeze in their relationship with Russia. Russia memorialized the victory over Nazi Germany, and Vladimir Putin raised his insults to the United States to a new level. Central Asia has long been squabbled over by outsiders. The latest manifestation of this old imperial “Great Game” is a proposed gas pipeline linking Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan with Russia.

An article on the Asian giants' game of chess in Indian Ocean. An article on The Pat Buchanan of India. A map that does justice to the strangeness of the Cooch Behar enclave complex risks either to be too big or too small to show the intricacies of enclaves and counter-enclaves on both side of the Indian-Bangladeshi border. Did Pakistan's president provoke an ethnic war last weekend? A general state of disarray: A slaughter in Karachi, and a vengeful judge, are signs that Pervez Musharraf is struggling to remain in power. Anatol Lieven on why Pakistan must seek unity in the face of extremism.

From Commentary, Norman Podhoretz on The Case for Bombing Iran. A look back at the day Iraq attacked America (accidentally?) twenty years ago. The Army's plan to professionalize Iraq's police could backfire, as militia-infiltrated squads become more effective killers. A truly national army? Iraq's Kurdish soldiers have been welcomed in parts of Baghdad. The Powder Keg Up North: Why Iraqi Kurdistan may be heading for deadly trouble — and Kirkuk may be the flash point. An article on the risk of Turkish intervention in northern Iraq.

Gangs of Iraq: Desperate to shore up its flagging ranks, the military is quietly enlisting thousands of active gang members and shipping them to Iraq. Will a brutal murder finally wake up the Pentagon. It's patriotic to criticize: Fred Kaplan on how our generals got so mediocre. Our government doesn't take care of its veterans. Steve Robinson does. And from TAC, this letter was sent to George Tenet by a group of former intelligence officers. Tenet reportedly received a $4 million advance for his new tell-all

From the latest issue of International Journal of Zizek Studies, Slavoj Zizek on Badiou: Notes From an Ongoing Debate; Marc de Kesel (Radboud): Truth as Formal Catholicism - On Alain Badiou, Saint Paul: La fondation de l’universalisme; Adrian Johnston (New Mexico): The Quick and the Dead: Alain Badiou and the Split Speeds of Transformation; Ken Jackson (Wayne State): The Great Temptation of “Religion”: Why Badiou has been so important to Žižek; Levi R. Bryant (Collin): Symptomal Knots and Evental Ruptures: Žižek, Badiou, and Discerning the Indiscernible; Ed Pluth (CSU - Chico): Against Spontaneity: The Act and Overcensorship in Badiou, Lacan, and Žižek; and Socialism Reconsidered: Remarks on Žižek`s Repeating Lenin pdf. A review of Conversations with Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak.

From TNR, Robert M. Solow reviews Prophet of Innovation: Joseph Schumpeter and Creative Destruction by Thomas K. McCraw. A review of A Theory of Secession: The Case for Political Self-Determination.

From Metapsychology Book Reviews, a review of Michel Foucault by Clare O'Farrell; a review of Foucault and the Government of Disability; and a review of My Body Politic: A Memoir by Simi Linton. A review of The Case Against Perfection by Michael Sandel. The introduction to Neuroscience and Philosophy: Brain, Mind, and Language by Maxwell Bennett, Daniel Dennett, Peter Hacker, and John Searle. A review of Signs, Mind, And Reality: A Theory of Language As the Folk Model of the World.

From National Review, a review of David Horowitz's Indoctrination U: The Left’s War Against Academic Freedom. From Campus Progress, Campus Con: The new film "Indoctrinate U" treats young conservatives as victims. From TAP, a better idea for college loans: Here's how to prevent college loans from being a straitjacket that determines graduates' career choices. Ivy League crunch brings new cachet to next tier: Second-tier colleges are becoming more selective because of the heated competition at the top. Study finds college-prep courses in high school leave many students lagging, as only a quarter of high school students who take the core courses are well prepared for college.

F for Felony: Why parents never hear about a shocking number of college campus crimes. Crime scene investigations: Academic research really matters only if it leads to social reform, says criminologist Lawrence Sherman. Why merit pay for teachers isn't such a great idea: In theory, it's a no-brainer: teachers should be paid more for teaching better. Bible curriculum dispute heats up: The spread of Bible instruction in public schools is raising questions about the separation of church and state. That is particularly true in places like Odessa, Texas, that have adopted one of two competing national curricula. Save the Catholic schools! They work miracles with inner-city kids, but without help, their own future is uncertain. And what kind of praise do kids need to hear? Emily Bazelon investigates

From Think Tank, America Quo Vadis: Max Boot and Dennis Ross debate the limits of diplomacy (and part 2). A review of Cullen Murphy's Are We Rome?

From Claremont Review of Books, a review of America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It, by Mark Steyn; a review of The Enemy At Home: The Cultural Left and Its Responsibility for 9/11, by Dinesh D'Souza; a review of The Theocons: Secular America Under Siege, by Damon Linker; and a review of Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements, and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America—and What We Can Do About It, by Juan Williams; Winning the Race: Beyond the Crisis in Black America, by John McWhorter; and White Guilt: How Blacks and Whites Together Destroyed the Promise of the Civil Rights Era, by Shelby Steele.

From Salon, Alan Wolfe on how Jerry Falwell spent a career demonizing others. Upon his death, what else could he expect in return? (and more). Farewell to Falwell: A look at Jerry Falwell's nasty contributions to American political life. Don’t Believe the Hype: Jerry Falwell built a megachurch, and created a university, both laudable feats. But his influence on American politics has been vastly overstated (and here is Jerry Falwell's Hit Parade and a few Jerry Falwell quotes). The Devil and Jerry Falwell Jeffrey Goldberg chats with the late reverend about Judaism and the Antichrist. A review of Why Politics Needs Religion: The Place of Religious Arguments in the Public Square by Brendan Sweetman.

From Secular Web, a review of Sam Harris' The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason; a review of Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion; and a review of Science and Religion: Are They Compatible?, ed. Paul Kurtz. From Commonweal, can’t we all just get along? A history of religious coexistence.

From Christianity Today, a review of The New Faces of Christianity: Believing the Bible in the Global South by Philip Jenkins; a review of Serve God, Save the Planet: A Christian Call to Action and Saving God's Green Earth: Rediscovering the Church's Responsibility to Environmental Stewardship; and evangelicals are tempted by moralism because they've forgotten what God wants at the center. Church Militant: A review of God’s War: A New History of the Crusades, by Christopher Tyerman. More on Pope Benedict's Jesus of Nazareth: From the Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration. Among the most popular religions to have flowered since the 1960s, Wicca — a form of paganism — still faces a struggle for acceptance.

And from American Sexuality, sermon with a feminist touch: An article on the kidnapping of Aimee Semple McPherson; Got a Groovey Thing Goin': An interview with Richard Croker, author of The Boomer Century 1946-2046; that ain't White: A look at the long and ugly history of "trash" talk; and a view from inside: An interview with transgender activist Jackson Bowman on the Stanton case

From TLS, characters in search of a pub: An article on the lost worlds of Patrick Hamilton. A review of Boomsday: A Novel by Christopher Buckley. A review of The Dead Fathers Club: A Novel by Matt Haig.

From Agni, an interview with Jane Hirshfield, author of six books of poetry, most recently After, which was shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize, and Given Sugar, Given Salt, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award; and here are aphorisms regarding impatience.

From Radiant, Pulled together from Luci Shaw’s lifetime of writing about art and faith, Breath for the Bones provides an intelligent look at the intersection of two worlds that, to the modern mind, often seem far apart.  Now comes Lon Milo DuQuette's Accidental Christ, a story told by Jesus' elderly Uncle Clopas, and a gripping tale it is. From Nextbook, Asch's Passion: A popular Yiddish novelist strove for immortality by taking on Jesus, but it cost him his core audience and made him a marked man; Immediate Identification: Thoman Mann's protagonist knew he wasn't like the other boys. So did Marco Roth; and firmly in the fold: Haim Watzman looks back on the life of Israeli writer S. Yizhar, a trenchant critic of the country he loved.

From 3:AM Magazine, Andrew Gallix talks to Jon Savage about Teenage and the birth of youth culture; Richard O’Brien talks literature with John Darnielle of Mountain Goats fame; and Pete Carvill reviews Michael Muhammad Knight’s The Taqwacores.

From Chronicles, a review of Winter’s Bone: A Novel, by Daniel Woodrell. The Little Magazine That Could: On the 25th anniversary and the publication of Counterpoints: 25 Years of The New Criterion on Culture & the Arts. Newspapers need book reviews: In their enthusiasm for the web, editors should remember all the readers who still like a little ink on their fingers.

The closest most of us get to our favourite authors is reading their books. But some people insist on stalking their idols to their front doors... and beyond. Alan Taylor explores our fascination with the homes of the famous, while Rob Fletcher and Ajay Close recount their experiences of living with literary ghosts. Writing Under the Influence: Jonathan Lethem ponders a good side to plagiarism.

Second Lives and online utopias: A review of Second Lives by Tim Guest. Not sure if you're aware of this, but the Internet has changed everything: A review of Who Controls the Internet? by Jack Goldsmith and Tim Wu. Digital information has a shorter lifespan than you think — and federal budget cuts may make it even shorter. From Electronic Book Review, NINES is an initiative at the University of Virginia to "establish a coordinated network of peer-reviewed content and tools"; a review of an experiment in visual textuality, Only Revolutions: A Novel by Mark Z. Danielewski; and Mark Amerika on The Sounds of the Artificial Intelligentsia. And Steve Krug's Don't Make Me Think! A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability is to web design what Strunk & White's Elements of Style is to formal writing

William Langewiesche’s The Atomic Bazaar: The Rise of the Nuclear Poor insightfully examines the perils created by the illicit and unstoppable spread of nuclear weapons to some of the world’s most volatile nations. From CRB, an article on China as a rising nuclear power.

A look at why China relaxed blogger crackdown. How far can China remain inside the world and outside it, embrace the west's market economy, while rejecting its political ideas? What's your China fantasy: A debate between James Mann and David M. Lampton on the uncertain political future of the world’s most populous country. Did it really help to be a Japanese colony? An article on East Asian economic performance in historical perspective. A push to legally enshrine Buddhism as Thailand's official creed could inflame sectarian discord. A review of The Khyber Pass: A history of Empire and invasion by Paddy Docherty.

The United States has spent $2bn creating an Afghan army that it hopes will prove an effective anti-Taliban force. Some of its members seem keen to fight, but it is not easy to get any of them out of bed in the morning. Her son's death on 9/11 spurred Sally Goodrich to do the one thing she knows best: educate. The beneficiaries of her grief became young girls in war-ravaged Afghanistan. The uses and limits of soft power: A review of Charm Offensive by Joshua Kurlantzick.

Sunnis break with Al Qaeda: A split among the Sunni insurgency in Iraq is creating new allies for the Shiite-led government.  When you look at the history of human warfare, civil wars always stand out: Wariness, not hatred, keeps civil wars raging.  Sometimes in war, you can put a price on life: When soldiers at war run amok, prosecution is only the first step toward justice. Legitimate compensation and a real show of contrition must also be offered. It's our cage, too: Assertions that "torture works" may reassure a fearful public, but it is a false security. If the United States spreads its Middle Eastern disaster into Iran, it won't be the fault of George W. Bush alone – a Democratic Congress will share some of the blame. Fortunately, the legislative branch has effective options for stopping war before it starts.

From Slate, Bushies Behaving Badly: An illustrated guide to GOP scandals. The Enterprising American: A look at Bush policy guru Karl Zinsmeister's dicy past. From ePluribus Media, an article on the GOP, and the line that jumped the Congressional firewall; and resurrecting Jim Crow: The erratic resume of the voting section chief, and more on dismantling voting rights enforcement. With Election Day registration, all qualified voters can participate in the vital American tradition of voting without finding themselves hampered by arbitrary registration deadlines. A red state in 2004, Florida's in play once again.

From LA Weekly, a special issue on LA People 2007. And Los Angeles’ many cultures are testing Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa—and his style of politics