The essence of Olde England: Exploring the Enlightenment's seamy underside, historian Emily Cockayne brings to life the sights, sounds, and especially the smells of 18th-century Britain in Hubbub: Filth, Noise & Stench in England. A review of Empire of Blue Water: Captain Morgan's Great Pirate Army, the Epic Battle for the Americas, and the Catastrophe that Ended the Outlaws' Bloody Reign by Stephan Talty and The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down by Colin Woodard.

A review of Cape Wind: Money, Celebrity, Class, Politics and the Battle for Our Energy Future on Nantuket Sound by Wendy Williams and Robert Whitcomb. A review of The Clarks of Cooperstown: Their Singer Sewing Machine Fortune, Their Great and Influential Art Collections, Their Forty-Year Feud (and an excerpt). A review of The Fox and the Flies: The World of Joseph Silver, Racketeer and Psychopath.

I am a Goggomobil: Goerg Klein pays homage to the cutest thing that ever graced the autobahn. An interview with Steve Pomper, author of Is There a Problem, Officer? A Cop's Inside Scoop on Avoiding Traffic Tickets. A review of The Longest Ride: My 10-year 500,000 Mile Motorcycle Journey by Emilio Scotto. An interview with Pete Jordan, author of Dishwasher: One Man's Quest to Wash Dishes in All Fifty States (and a review). A review of Terra Nullius: A Journey Through No One's Land by Sven Lindqvist. A review of I Golfed Across Mongolia: How an Improbable Adventure Helped Me Rediscover The Spirit of Golf (And Life) by André Tolmé.

A review of Bullwinkle on Business: Motivational Secrets of a Chief Executive Moose by John Hoover. A review of Naked Thinking: The Power of Feeling Less, Thinking More, and Making Better Decisions. A review of Bigger Deal: A Year on the New Poker Circuit by Anthony Holden. Scrap mania: Scrapbooking, the most popular craft in America, goes upmarket. As a household appliance, the toaster is so common it's become invisible.

A review of The cult of pharmacology: How America became the world’s most troubled drug culture by Richard DeGrandpre and Intoxication in mythology: A worldwide dictionary of gods, rites, intoxicants and places by Ernest L. Abel. It wasn't always that way. A review of Abducted: How People Come to Believe They Were Kidnapped by Aliens by Susan A. Clancy. And on the real truth about alien abductions: The over-drugged and under-loved make their own way in the world, even when the FBI tries to make them forget


Life, liberty, and the folks back home: First they come to America. Then they start changing the world. From Logos, Philip Green on Immigration: Myths and Principles and Charlotte Collett on France and immigration; and a review essay on The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic and Blowback: The Causes and Consequences of American Empire by Chalmers Johnson.

Bush's Amazing Achievement: Jonathan Freedland reviews Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic by Chalmers Johnson; Second Chance: Three Presidents and the Crisis of American Superpower by Zbigniew Brzezinski and Statecraft and How to Restore America's Standing in the World by Dennis Ross. George Weigel on Just War and Iraq Wars. You could be forgiven for thinking that neoconservatives have had their day. But that would be a grave error, warns political philosopher Shadia Drury. More on Are We Rome? The Fall of an Empire and the Fate of America by Cullen Murphy. George Scialabba reviews The War of the World: Twentieth-Century Conflict and the Descent of the West, by Niall Ferguson. A review of The Utility of Force: The Art of War in the Modern World by Rupert Smith.

A review of Napoleon in Egypt: The greatest glory, by Paul Strathern. A review of Garibaldi: Invention of a Hero. Less than Frank: A review of FDR by Jean Edward Smith. If Hitler was crazy, too often it was like a fox: A review of The Wages of Destruction: The Making and Breaking of the Nazi Economy.  A review of The Unknown Gulag: The Lost World of Stalin's Special Settlements. A review of The Fire: The Bombing of Germany, 1940–1945, by Joerg Friedrich. A review of In Command of History: Churchill Fighting and Writing the Second World War by David Reynolds. A review of Pearl Harbor: A Novel of December 8th by Newt Gingrich. More on Nixon and Kissinger: Partners in Power. A review of The Reagan Diaries (and more).

From NYRB, a review of The Averaged American: Surveys, Citizens, and the Making of a Mass Public by Sarah E. Igo. The Specter Haunting Your Office: James Lardner reviews The Disposable American: Layoffs and Their Consequences by Louis Uchitelle; The Great American Jobs Scam by Greg LeRoy; and The Battle for the Soul of Capitalism by John C. Bogle. More and more on Al Gore's The Assault on Reason.

The Unintended Consequences of Hyperhydration: Health-conscious Americans consume 30 billion single-serving containers of bottled water a year. Supporters of new bottle bills are trying to figure out what to do with all the plastic. And increasingly, the military sees energy efficiency — and moving away from oil — as part of its national security mission. Does that mean the Pentagon is turning green?


Daniel H. Nexon and Thomas Wright (Georgetown): What’s at Stake in the American Empire Debate pdf. Illiberal Liberalism: Peter Berkowitz reviews Is Democracy Possible Here? Principles for a New Political Debate by Ronald Dworkin. New Theology, Old Economics: How are we to explain a book like Theology and the Political: The New Debate, a 2005 volume that captures some of the world's best theologians in a compromising relationship with the economic left? Are the anti-global Marxists Negri and Zizek really more useful interlocutors than, say, Douglass C. North, one of the developers of what has come to be called New Institutional Economics?

From Financial Times, under the hammer Online experiments show the problem with auction theories: we’re not rational enough. Economist Bryan Caplan argues that voters are biased, irrational, manipulable and plain ignorant. Is democracy dangerous? From the ivory tower to the barricades! Radical intellectuals explore the relationship between research and resistance: Excerpts from Constituent Imagination: Militant Investigations, Collective Theorization. An interview with Paul Mason, author of Live Working or Die Fighting, on the importance of writing about workers' history. Form Radical Middle, an article on re-inventing American history.

From NYRB, Lee Smolin reviews The Other Einstein Einstein: His Life and Universe by Walter Isaacson; Einstein: A Biography; "Subtle Is the Lord": The Science and the Life of Albert Einstein; The Private Lives of Albert Einstein; Einstein in Love: A Scientific Romance; Einstein's Clocks, Poincaré's Maps: Empires of Time; Einstein on Politics; and Einstein on Race and Racism. Steven Pinker reviews The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science by Natalie Angier (and an excerpt).

From First Things, Christoph Cardinal Schönborn on Reasonable Science, Reasonable Faith; an essay on Faith and Quantum Theory; Richard John Neuhaus on A University of a Particular Kind; and an essay on Schooling at Home.

From The Village Voice, Student Loan Xploited: Columbia reels after stock allegations; and city leaders want kids out of large schools and into smaller ones. Now one Brooklyn high school is fighting the mandate to close its doors. A review of A Class of Their Own: Black Teachers in the Segregated South by Adam Fairclough. Standardizing the Standards: A good nationwide test of students’ abilities would a) help kids learn, b) encourage teachers to innovate, c) save money or d) all of the above. And on decoding your kid's report card: It is the kind of comment that makes parents long for the brutal clarity of A's, B's and F's


From The Economist, anxiously watching a different world: Climate and other changes draw new interest and new misunderstandings to the Canadian north. Global warming's boom town: A town in Greenland attracts rich green globetrotters. Mexico's arid north — 54% of the nation's land surface — is drying out and blowing away in the wind at an alarming rate as desertification transforms this always-hardscrabble terrain into an American Sahara. Fission: A look at how small states the Caribbean get smaller still.

From TAP, for a Global FDA: If we're going to globalize the food we eat and wish to be safe, we need to get serious. A review of The Sushi Economy: Globalization and the Making of a Modern Delicacy. North Korea as the world's worst holiday destination: All the misery of Maoism with none of the redeeming features. A review of Charm Offensive: How China’s Soft Power Is Transforming the World, by Joshua Kurlantzick. An article on the language of Chinese soft power in the US. How can Americans understand China as it is — not as politicians and pundits prefer to depict it? (and part 2 and part 3 and part 4). A look at why Washington needs to embrace a new diplomatic geometry with China. A review of The China Fantasy: How Our Leaders Explain Away Chinese Repression and Charm Offensive: How China's Soft Power Is Transforming the World.

From Desicritics, an article on Deconstructing Martha Nussbaum: The Hindu Right Revisited. From Open Democracy, Western variants of multiculturalism and secularism are being challenged by religious demands for public recognition of faith. Instead of reinventing the wheel, the world should learn from India. Europeans have gone cold on the idea of a European Constitution. Could they learn something from that other Asian peninsula? Gandhi’s ideals a model for Europe.

Constitutional conundrums: The battle over the EU constitution is likely to be won by the minimalists. The argument for a written constitution in the United Kingdom in 2007 requires a sense of history and of the scale of the challenge. From The Spectator, Boris Johnson on the pursuit of happiness: "The real trouble is that our rulers are Puritans".

The Soviet occupation of Austria, 1945-1955: While Austria did not fall within the direct sphere of Soviet influence during the postwar period, it was earmarked for heavy economic exploitation. Siegfried Beer summarizes new perspectives gained after the opening up of the Russian state archives.  An interview with Tatiana Tolstaya, the great-grandniece of Leo Tolstoy, and one of Russia's most popular novelists and TV hosts: "Democracy has nearly disappeared in Russia". Whose side can we be on? The real story of the Chechen war defies simple good-versus-bad explanations. And judging from the tabloids, you can barely rollerskate along Miami Beach without tripping over a Russian pop star


From The New York Times Magazine, a special issue on Eco-Tecture. It’s boring at the top: Is Andreas Gursky—the highest-priced photographer alive—running out of ideas? The Branding of Rothko: How his art became the ultimate luxury object.

From The Potomac, All This Makes a Magnificent Asparagus: Gertrude Stein and Pablo Picasso on how to look; and if childhood and happiness are inseparable in the poet’s mind, the fear that they must come to an end lurks in his mind. Rembrandt's Feathers: Why do people collect? Is collecting a primal activity, perhaps rooted in the survival activities of primitive hunter-gatherers? Laurence Olivier was born 100 years ago today, but how have the years affected his reputation? Was he a sublime master of stagecraft or ham cut thick? What makes a "film pledge" visionary?

Unimpeded by Norwegian language, culture, or social conditions, Norway should be capable of creating and expanding a visionary arena for critically independent, international documentary film. An interview with Sonya Dyer: "Can’t non-white people ever just make art?" A review of Some Kind of Genius: The Extraordinary Journey of Musical Savant Tony DeBlois by Janice DeBlois and Antonia Felix.

From Open Democracy, Le Monde’s democratic coup: A journalists’ revolt at the great flagship of France’s media is a case-study in democracy, ethics, power, hubris and capitalism. From CJR, an article on The Tragedy of Peter Kann: A devoted son of Dow Jones brings down the company. A review of Media Concentration and Democracy: Why Ownership Matters.

A great idea lives forever. Shouldn’t its copyright? No good case exists for the inequality of real and intellectual property, because no good case can exist for treating with special disfavor the work of the spirit and the mind. Should the government begin regulating violent content on television or can the industry police itself? A former FCC commissioner and the executive producer of "Law & Order" debate. Jack Shafer on The Monday Crap Story: As nonperishable as a MoonPie. So many news articles are the same; only the names are changed. In Hollywood, where everything is fleeting, all reporters need is this template from Michael Y. Park to file their stories.

From Editor & Publisher, editors explore recent redesigns at major Web sites. Working Without Wires: Who will WiFi's biggest beneficiaries be?  Cory Doctorow on how to keep hostile jerks from taking over your online community.  Even Better Than The Real Thing: Sweatshop gamers, virtual terrorists, avatar porn, and other tales from the digital frontier. And chip-maker Intel "should be ashamed of itself" for efforts to undermine the $100 laptop initiative, according to its founder Nicholas Negroponte


From The National Interest, Beyond American Hegemony: If the Iraq War is seen as merely a bad application of a fundamentally sound U.S. grand strategy of hegemony, the United States will set itself up for other self-inflicted disasters in the future. An excerpt from A Capitol Idea: Think Tanks and US Foreign Policy pdf. A review of Stoic Warriors: The Ancient Philosophy behind the Military Mind. Inside the jihadi worldview: One man tells of what it is like to think like a terror suspect. A review of The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid. William Langewiesche’s The Atomic Bazaar, his new book on proliferation, is quite scary. The good news is that he gets most of it wrong.

From The Mises Institute, an article in defense of strip malls. Can block clubs block despair? Why do some poor communities fall apart while others cohere? Community organization can make a difference — up to a point. Being Unemployed: The toughest lack of a job you'll ever love. Matthew Yglesias on why a guest-worker program is bad for immigrants, bad for native workers and bad for America. A review of Tariq Modood's Multiculturalism: A Civic Idea. Recently the government has moved away from the idea of terrorist-as-murderer, with terrorism charges sought when all the evidence shows that the defendants took affirmative steps to make sure no one would be endangered.

From Reason, Crackbrained Crack Crackdown: There's no rational basis for the federal government's cocaine sentencing policy. A review of Martha Stewart's Legal Troubles. Can a public figure have a private life? Peter Singer wants to know.

From the Annals of Medacious Punditry, an article on the work of Larry Kudlow, Pin Striped Perfidy. An interview with Kevin Drum of The Washington Monthly on blogging. An article on how Spencer Ackerman got Too Hot for TNR. Getting beyond hollow, theatrical contrarianism and into a realm of real, good-faith debate will require overhauling the way that writers, especially political writers, make their living. What's the point of books? John McWhorter investigates. From Human Events, here are the Top 10 books Nancy Pelosi should read. An interview with Marcus Stern, author of The Wrong Stuff: The Extraordinary Saga of Randy “Duke” Cunningham, the Most Corrupt Congressman Ever Caught. Dancing into the Majority: Once alienated, grassroots activists are finding ways to work with the Democratic Party establishment.

From The Village Voice, Secrets of the Mob: Geezer gangster George Barone sings like a canary.  A review of White Ethnic New York: Jews, Catholics, and the Shaping of Postwar Politics. From The New York Observer, The Bad Old Days: Remember flashing? Abe Beame? Robin Byrd? $300 West Side rents? Wake up and recall the urine! If you can’t, the vets say you’re not a real New Yorker. And congratulations, New York! You are home to the worst national park in the country


From Judgment and Decision Making, Ingmar H. A. Franke, Irina Georgieva and Peter Muris (Erasmus): The rich get richer and the poor get poorer: On risk aversion in behavioral decision-making; Jochen Reb (SMU) and Terry Connolly (Arizona): Possession, feelings of ownership and the endowment effect; David Gal (Stanford): A psychological law of inertia and the illusion of loss aversion; Irina Cojuharenco (Pompeu Fabra): Lay intuitions about overall evaluations of experiences; Christine R. Harris, Michael Jenkins, and Dale Glaser (UCSD): Gender Differences in Risk Assessment: Why do Women Take Fewer Risks than Men?; and an essay on Amos Tversky's contributions to legal scholarship.

A review of Consciousness and Its Place in Nature: Does Physicalism Entail Panpsychism? by Galen Strawson et al. A review of What is Good and Why: The Ethics of Well-Being by Richard Kraut. A review of Intricate Ethics: Rights, Responsibilities, and Permissible Harm by F. M. Kamm.

From TNR, Cass Sunstein reviews The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil by Philip G. Zimbardo. A review of Psychology and the Natural Law of Reparation. A review of Beyond Moral Judgment by Alice Crary. From Newsweek, are we who we think we are? Some intriguing research with kids finds that personality is a lot more malleable than previously thought. Researchers at University College London are delicately re-creating Stanley Milgram’s work using computer-generated characters instead of actors.

From Free Inquiry, humanism and the science of happiness: An interview with Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, author of Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience; and can psychology be positive about religion?  The Prince of Reason: An interview with Albert Ellis, developer of rational emotive behavior therapy. The groundbreaking treatment rests on the premise that most of our emotional problems are based on irrational beliefs (and more). This Is Your Life: The way people talk about their pasts reveals a lot about how they approach and write the future. From Britannica, an article on understanding emotion and the feeling person.

From Monitor on Psychology, that teenage feeling: Harvard researchers may have found biological clues to quirky adolescent behavior; and observers are quicker to see anger on men’s faces and happiness on women’s. A simple case of gender stereotyping, or something more deeply rooted? John Shook investigates. Boys and their fighting toys: A review of Achtung Schweinehund: A boy's own story of imaginary combat. With hours of training, animals can learn to solve simple math problems, but do they have a natural number sense?


From Guernica, an interview with Stephen Kinzer, author of Overthrow: America’s Century of Regime Change; and first victims of freedom: An interview with Iraqi feminist Yanar Mohammed; an interview with Ali Allawi, author of The Occupation of Iraq: Winning the War, Losing the Peace. An interview with Yanar Mohammed, founder of the Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq, on how Iraq is into “an Afghanistan under the Taliban, where oppression and discrimination of women is institutionalized". Who says American feminists have ignored the plight of Muslim women? Katha Pollitt wants to know.

From The Nation, The Secret Air War in Iraq: Bombs from American planes are killing tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians, and no one in the mainstream media is talking about it; and Iraq has prompted the fastest-growing refugee crisis in the world, and it's threatening to destabilize the entire region. From The Washington Monthly, Democrats are right to push for an end to the Iraq war. But don't expect the troops to be grateful. "How a Democrat Can Get My Vote": Advice from seven recent war veterans. The Deja Vu to Avoid on Iraq: If any of the domestic political elements that led us to go into Iraq influence the fight over getting out of it, we're in trouble. From The Weekly Standard, liberal hawks, an endangered species: What Iraq has done to the interventionists of the Democratic party (and a response by Jon Chait). Ron Paul had a point: Non-interventionists have been remarkably prescient. So why are they still shunted to the fringe?

From TNR, she may be a witless fool. She may be a partisan hack. But Monica Goodling gave the best testimony yet about the U.S. attorney firings. Corleones of the Right: Bush's choice for Consumer Product Safety Commission chief is from a family of right-wing hustlers. Wanted: A Liberal Dick Cheney: Why a progressive vice president should follow the Cheney model. Dancing With Ghosts: American politics plays with the dangers of permanent opposition. Our unfinished Constitution: After 220 years of the electoral college, it's time for Americans to elect their president directly.

Thumpin' to Conclusions: Republicans are drawing all the wrong lessons from their midterm loss. An article on the surprising relevance of Ron Paul, the GOP's libertarian gadfly. The Ron Paul campaign hopes "Reading for Rudy" will educate Giuliani. A look at how missionary work trains Mormons to stump for Mitt. Can John McCain tell a joke? Michelle Cottle investigates.

From GQ, an article on the Honorable, Enraged Man from Virginia, Senator Jim Webb: It’s been a busy few months for the straightest talker in DC. An interview with Bay Buchanan, author of The Extreme Makeover of Hillary (Rodham) Clinton. A review of A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton by Carl Bernstein and Her Way: The Hopes and Ambitions of Hillary Rodham Clinton by Jeff Gerth and Don Van Natta Jr. And you do what, exactly? If Hillary wins the White House, Bill becomes "First Gentleman". An expert on First Ladies explains just how that would work. A review of No Excuses: Concessions of a Serial Campaigner by Robert Shrum. And The Candidate Killers: There is one question that haunts every campaign. This is it


From Spaces of Utopia, Gregory Claeys (London): Who needs Utopia? A dialogue with my utopian self (With apologies, and thanks, to H. G. Wells); Raffaella Baccolini ( Bologna): Dystopia Matters: On the Use of Dystopia and Utopia; Peter Kraftl (Northampton): Spacing out an unsettling utopian ethics; Lisa Garforth (York): Ideal Nature: Utopias of Landscape and Loss Paul B Smith (Paisley): Utopia and the Socialist Project; Chloë Houston (London): No Place and New Worlds: The Early Modern Utopia and the Concept of the Global Community; Laurent Loty ( Rennes): Which utopias for today? Historical considerations and propositions for a dialogical and paradoxical alterrealism; Mary Baine Campbell ( Brandeis): Utopia Now; and Richard Saage (Halle-Wittenberg): Socio-political Utopianism and the Demands of the 21st Century; Malcolm Miles (Plymouth): The End of Utopia: Imminent and Immanent Liberation; and Utopia Re-Interpreted: An interview with Vita Fortunati of the University of Bologna pdf.

A review of The Challenge of Human Rights: Their Origin, Development, and Significance by Jack Mahoney. A review of Can Human Rights Survive? A review of Leora Batnitzky's Leo Strauss and Emmanuel Levinas: Philosophy and the Politics of Revelation. A purple patch on a classless society by Hannah Arendt.

From Economic Principals, a review of Janos Kornai's By Force of Thought: Irregular Memoirs of an Intellectual Journey. Hip Heterodoxy: A group of economists is challenging the most basic assumptions of neoclassical economic theory, and their influence is growing. A History Hobby: Don't leave scholarship to the professionals.

From The Chronicle of Higher Education, a special report on what the rankings do for U.S. News. Mort Zuckerman abruptly ends an interview about the U.S. News College Rankings. Suicides a symptom of larger UC crisis: As more students with mental health problems enroll, campuses lack the resources to cope. But there may be hidden dangers. No-Sweat Sit-Ins Hit Academe: Will a donation from Nike deflect Stanford's efforts to curb sweatshop labor in the making of its sports regalia? Ask a Mexican: In what field of work would someone with a bachelor's in Chicano studies land?

From Great Britain, the myth of multiculturalism White pupils in urban schools are failing academically: why? (and two responses). Jay Matthews on why AP and IB schools soar. Strike Up the Band: Children at a Catholic school make music, and progress. Research finds young babies can discriminate between different languages just by looking at an adult's face, even if they do not hear a single spoken word.

Hold tight as we look at modern scientific advances and ask "Why aren't we dead yet?": 5 ways science wants to kill you. It came like yesterday: The first human inhabitants of North America may not have exterminated the mammoths. The culprit might have been a comet. Research suggests that a wayward comet hurtled into Earth's atmosphere around 12,900 years ago, fractured into pieces and exploded in giant fireballs, wiping out the Clovis culture. And Adam and Eve in the Land of the Dinosaurs: At the $27 million Creation Museum, evolution gets its continual comeuppance, while biblical revelations are treated as gospel


From The New Humanist, an interview with Richard Jeffrey Newman, author of The Silence of Men, on sexual abuse, machismo, and poetry as survival; and Andrea Kaspryk on "How I learned to stop worrying about my transgendered self". Something is defiantly happening in the literary scene, and Suburban Pornography is more proof of that. Can pornographic literature impart a lesson in morality? Tamara Faith Berger believes it can.

A review of Cake Or Death: The Excruciating Choices of Everyday Life by Heather Mallick. Gerard Woodward enjoys Charlotte Mednelson's fizzingly paced tale of fractured family life, When We Were Bad. Joanna Briscoe discovers what happens after twins are secretly separated at birth in Kim Edwards's The Memory Keeper's Daughter. Daddy Dearest (well, not always): A review of The First Man in My Life: Daughters Write About Their Fathers.

A bloody but riveting historical novel: A review of The Sun Over Breda by Arturo Pérez-Reverte. Lost in Black and White: In a subtly shaded tale of race relations in the wartime Western Australian Outback, a novelist finds her cross-cultural voice. Alexander in Afghanistan: A review of The Afghan Campaign: A Novel. A surreal novel of suspense from one of Japan's most exciting writers: A review of After Dark by Haruki Murakami (and more).

The insider: Jenni Mills explains how her Alien Baby grew into a novel. Stormy Weather, the title of Paulette Jiles's new work, has three meanings in the context of the novel. A review of Too Close to the Sun: The Audacious Life and Times of Denys Finch Hatton. The question of classification comes up again and again in reviews of Lydia Davis' work. Is she a fiction writer? Is she a poet? Add a new question: Is she a sociologist? You will love this book or loathe it: A review of The Gathering by Anne Enright. In the Driver's Seat: Stories by Helen Simpson and Male of the Species: Stories by Alex Mindt argue short stories deserve just as much respect as novels.

It is not difficult to see why Steven Hall's debut novel, The Raw Shark Texts, should have set off a heated bidding war for the film rights. An interview with Michael Connelly, author of The Overlook, serialized in The New York Times and acted out on videos at YouTube. Steve Donoghue touts the overlooked sea novels of Nicholas Monsarrat. Sam Sacks surveys the reviews of Paul Auster’s Travels in the Scriptorium, which caused some confused tail-chasing amongst its critics.

Prospect's Thomas Pynchon correspondent is battling his way through Against the Day—and recording the experience. A review of The Castle in the Forest, Norman Mailer’s new novel about evil and Hitler and, amazingly, not about Norman Mailer. The Man Made Visible: A review of Ralph Ellison: A Biography (and more and more and more and more and an excerpt). Bender Takes a Beating: When the Gertrude Stein imitations begin and the punch lines go flat, it's time to reconsider a writer so widely touted as a fiction star. More and more on Michael Chabon's The Yiddish Policemen's Union. And more and more on Nathan Englander’s The Ministry of Special Cases

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