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  • Multitude
    by Alejandro Zambra on 11/07/2020 at 7:00 am

    It’s not strange for me to dream about crowds; on the contrary, my dreams tend to be full of extras who turn into secondary characters, and these secondary characters suddenly take on primary importance, but I wonder if this dream is new, if this crowd is new.I think of my friends in Chile, […]

  • The Novels of Tension Between Freedom and Disaster
    by Tim Parks on 10/07/2020 at 7:00 am

    With all these authors, the imprisoning apprehension of the dangers lurking behind every action only heightens the yearning for a free, full life. “The tiniest misstep can have tragic consequences,” we hear in Philip Roth’s Indignation; “A brief glance in the wrong […]

  • How to Fix Child Poverty
    by Jason DeParle on 09/07/2020 at 2:00 pm

    It’s been three decades since the Annie E. Casey Foundation published its first Kids Count report, an annual collection of statistics on child well-being attractively packaged and broken up by state to maximize local coverage. After the presidency of Ronald Reagan had filled the airwaves with […]

  • Putin’s Constitutional Tsarism
    by Anastasia Edel on 09/07/2020 at 1:37 pm

    Russia being a strongman’s domain, Vladimir Putin could have achieved his goals, as he always has, simply by pulling on the various levers of his power vertical. There is no organized resistance to the current order; the country is stable and the military is loyal. Why engage in this lengthy […]

  • The Pro-Privatization Shock Therapy of the UK’s Covid Response
    by Rachel Shabi on 08/07/2020 at 9:59 am

    There is a larger game afoot in the UK government’s privatization-friendly Covid-19 response. The outsourcing bonanza has coincided with Britain’s tense talks with the European Union over the terms of a new, non-member relationship. For Leave.EU hardliners, a no-deal Brexit is not […]

  • One Small Vote for Lockport, NY, One Giant Lesson for 2020 America
    by Jim Shultz on 07/07/2020 at 3:28 pm

    As we face the unprecedented circumstance of a presidential election during a pandemic, the right to vote by mail has a new urgency in protecting Americans’ fundamental right to cast a ballot. But as the disappointed candidates for school reform learned in June’s vote-by-mail test drive […]

  • The Magic Mountains of the Acoma Pueblo and Thomas Mann
    by David Treuer on 06/07/2020 at 7:00 am

    In January, not long before the pandemic arrived, I traveled to the Acoma Pueblo in New Mexico, some sixty miles from Albuquerque. Acoma is maybe the oldest continuously inhabited city in North America—the Acoma people have been living atop their mountain, a 357-foot mesa, for over a thousand […]

  • The Scandal of Our Drug Supply
    by Daniel J. Kevles on 05/07/2020 at 11:30 am

    Katherine Eban’s disquieting, often unnerving, and at times infuriating new book Bottle of Lies ranges across the pharmaceutical industry in several countries, but its chief concern is the generic drug industry in India and the inconsistent vetting by the FDA of the industry’s products […]

  • France: After Lockdown, the Street
    by Rachel Donadio on 04/07/2020 at 11:00 am

    When the lockdown—le confinement—finally began to lift on May 11, giving way to a tenuous period of reopening—le déconfinement—Paris looked the same. And yet it wasn’t. Over the course of that long, strange April—during which France recorded nearly 20,000 […]

  • Days in the Life of Tetsuya Noda
    by Eve Sneider on 04/07/2020 at 7:00 am

    Born in 1940, Tetsuya Noda, one of Japan’s foremost print artists, began keeping illustrated diaries as a young boy, drawing and writing about growing up in the small town of Uki, on Kyushu, the southernmost of Japan’s main islands. Spurred by a friend’s discovery that mimeograph […]

  • Fiction and Responsibility
    by Esther Allen on 03/07/2020 at 3:30 pm

    The Gringa, a recent novel by Andrew Altschul, raises an important question: Does fiction, particularly fiction that claims to be based on history, have any responsibilities at all vis-à-vis real people and their lives, places they inhabit, truth? At a time when systematic disinformation […]

  • ‘The Most Ignorant and Unfit’: What Made America’s Worst Ever Leader?
    by David Rothkopf on 03/07/2020 at 7:00 am

    Alexander Hamilton observed that “the only path to a subversion of the republican system of the Country is by flattering the prejudices of the people, and exciting their jealousies and apprehensions, to throw affairs into confusion, and bring on civil commotion.” Trump is a sign that we […]

  • It is a Choice (because Kanye)
    by francine j. harris on 02/07/2020 at 10:00 am

    The rapper chooses his vacancies. Room does not choose the rapper. The rapper walked into rooms. or were dragged into rooms. were dragged into rooms. Or we walked into rooms. The seating charts of airplanes look like the Middle Passage. Then we boarded the plane. were dragged onto the plane. The […]

  • Wanting Wrong
    by Anne Enright on 02/07/2020 at 9:00 am

    The narrator of Miranda Popkey’s first novel, Topics of Conversation, is the daughter of an old Hollywood family, now in gentle decline. Her nice, white life “was going to be suburban, it was going to be upper-middle-class,” but she throws all that into disarray when she decides […]

  • The Rose
    by Ben Lerner on 02/07/2020 at 8:30 am

    At some point I realized the questions were the same questions.

  • Israel’s Annexation Plan, a New Era in Palestinian Resistance
    by Tareq Baconi on 02/07/2020 at 7:02 am

    Disenchanted with their official leadership, Palestinians in the Occupied Territories, Israel, and the diaspora are increasingly redefining their struggle away from what they believe is the two-state mirage and toward resisting the one-state reality. Rather than settling for symbols of statehood […]

  • A Shuttered Garage, a Devastated Trade
    by Willa Glickman, Phil Penman on 29/06/2020 at 10:30 am

    The taxi industry has been brutally crunched on two sides—from skyrocketing operating costs, on the one hand, and a sharp decline in business, on the other. When the bubble burst in late 2014, the value of medallions crashed, leaving drivers with no savings and deep in debt. A rash of […]

  • He Made Stone Speak
    by Ingrid D. Rowland on 28/06/2020 at 12:00 pm

    Because all creative people start out as young people, we have a tendency to ascribe creativity to youth itself, but mature masters like Michelangelo remind us that the urge to create has nothing to do with age or the lack of it, but rather with that inventive spirit both he and Vasari called […]

  • The Films of Women’s Liberation
    by Phoebe Chen on 27/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    An exceptional series currently streaming on the Criterion Channel, “Tell Me: Women Filmmakers, Women’s Stories,” is an occasion to reconsider the ranging paths of feminist media production stoked by women’s liberation in the early 1970s. Originally curated by Nellie Killian […]

  • Pulling Down ‘the Wall of No’ on Police Reform in Minneapolis
    by Krithika Varagur on 26/06/2020 at 10:49 am

    Lena K. Gardner, a co-founder of the Black Visions Collective, found her early engagements with city politicians, including her councilman, Jacob Frey, who is now the city’s beleaguered mayor, were deeply frustrating. “I called it ‘the Wall of No,’” she recalled, of […]

  • Richard Wright, Masaoka Shiki, and the Haiku of Confinement
    by Christopher Benfey on 25/06/2020 at 11:07 am

    Bedridden in his Odéon apartment, Richard Wright—author of the 1940 novel Native Son and the autobiographical Black Boy (1945), his searing account of growing up in the Jim Crow South—spent the last year and a half of his life, before his death in 1960 at the age of fifty-two, […]

  • Indulging with Control in Fiction
    by Tim Parks on 24/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    Characters dream of solving their problems by becoming more controlled and many have delusions of “election”—the sense of oneself as “chosen,” “special,” a celebrity perhaps. “For a man of his age, fifty-two, divorced, he has, to his mind, solved the […]

  • Britain’s Colonial Legacy on Trial at The Hague
    by Philippe Sands on 23/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    This legacy—of Britain's slavery and colonialism, racism and empire—that had been delicately skipped over in my classes soon came ever more sharply into focus for me, not least through the legal cases in which I became professionally involved. The world as it was taught to me and the […]

  • American Fascism: It Has Happened Here
    by Sarah Churchwell on 22/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    “When Americans think of dictators they always think of some foreign model,” wrote the anti-fascist journalist Dorothy Thompson in the mid-1930s, but an American dictator would be “one of the boys, and he will stand for everything traditionally American.” And the American […]

  • Searching for Freedom in ‘Cane River’ and the Black Outdoors
    by Tiana Reid on 20/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    Two black households, not alike in dignity, in fair Louisiana, where we lay our scene: the Metoyers, “high yellow” Catholics, propertied Creoles with a good-looking son; and the Mathises, darker-skinned, poor, Baptist churchgoers with an equally good-looking daughter. In the newly […]

  • Ah Toy, Pioneering Prostitute of Gold Rush California
    by May Jeong on 19/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    Ah Toy had arrived in San Francisco just as California was becoming a state, in that interstitial time before the introduction of laws that would establish structural bias against women and people of color, and before the traditional order, religious and social, that pertained elsewhere in the US […]

  • Trey’s Rage: An African’s Education in Being Black in America
    by Mohamed Abdulkadir Ali on 18/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    When my family first immigrated to the US from Somalia, we were placed by a refugee agency in Buffalo, New York, in one of the city’s seedier neighborhoods. Our neighbor Trey, a hulking giant of a man and a trainer at a local boxing club, had quickly come to befriend and watch over this […]

  • ‘Ghosts of Sugar Land’: A Journey of Loss
    by Yasmin Adele Majeed on 17/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    Mark, the subject of Bassam Tariq’s Ghosts of Sugar Land, was an outsider in high school, being one of the only black students in his class, but as his South Asian Muslim friends tell it, they always tried to make him feel welcome in their culture. Converting to Islam seemed like an […]

  • How Defund and Disband Became the Demands
    by Amna A. Akbar on 15/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    Although calls for defunding and dissolution, rather than reform, may feel new to many, abolitionist organizing against the “prison industrial complex”—which includes prisons, police, and surveillance—goes back more than two decades. There is no delusion among abolitionists […]

  • The Problem of Police Powers for People Living While Black
    by Annette Gordon-Reed on 13/06/2020 at 5:00 pm

    I handed him my identification. He did a warrant check. A few minutes passed. Then he let us go. Nothing violent occurred. Unlike Michael Brown, Sandra Bland, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and so many others whose names are known because of tragic encounters with the police, I walked—or, […]

  • New York’s Rising Tides: Climate Inequality and Sandy’s Legacy
    by Willa Glickman on 13/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    It is easy to think of New York as more of a concept, an easily traversable, cosmopolitan hub, than a place, a part of the natural world. Covid-19 has clarified that our health and lifespan is tied to a zip code. Climate change will make the consequences of the environmental history of the land, of […]

  • Unpresidented
    by Fintan O’Toole on 12/06/2020 at 2:45 pm

    The US has engaged in many armed conflicts, but three of them have never ended: the Civil War, the Vietnam War, and the so-called war on terror. Their toxic residues flow from different directions into the current breakdown of the American polity.

  • Hervé Guibert: Living Without a Vaccine
    by Andrew Durbin on 12/06/2020 at 7:00 am

    In 1988 the French novelist and photographer Hervé Guibert was diagnosed with HIV. Two years later, Éditions Gallimard published To the Friend Who Did Not Save My Life, a stark autobiographical book about his desperate effort to gain access to an experimental “AIDS […]

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