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Updated: 28 min 23 sec ago

If we were to take a lesson from the <em>Iliad,</em> it would be to resist the seductions of rage. But beware of authors touting <strong>lessons from ancient Greeks</strong>

Thu, 09/07/2017 - 19:43
If we were to take a lesson from the Iliad, it would be to resist the seductions of rage. But beware of authors touting lessons from ancient Greeks

<strong>Philip Levine</strong> was the poet of the left wing of the left wing of the past, the bard of workaday exhaustion and routine. Paul Berman has come to praise him

Thu, 09/07/2017 - 19:43
Philip Levine was the poet of the left wing of the left wing of the past, the bard of workaday exhaustion and routine. Paul Berman has come to praise him

<p>The Quran is an allusive text. Precisely that difficult and poetic style, says <strong>Sari Nusseibeh</strong>, is what makes it a "progenitor of reason"</p>

Thu, 09/07/2017 - 03:47

The Quran is an allusive text. Precisely that difficult and poetic style, says Sari Nusseibeh, is what makes it a "progenitor of reason"

<p>"The term <strong>'resilience'</strong> was coined in the 1970s," says Edgar Jones. Before that, "everyone was assumed to be tough, so there wasn&rsquo;t really a word for it"</p>

Thu, 09/07/2017 - 03:47

"The term 'resilience' was coined in the 1970s," says Edgar Jones. Before that, "everyone was assumed to be tough, so there wasn’t really a word for it"

<strong>Salman Rushdie</strong>&nbsp;is either disinclined or unable to disguise his status-consciousness. Hard to say if that&rsquo;s due to a surfeit of self-awareness or its opposite

Tue, 09/05/2017 - 18:59
Salman Rushdie is either disinclined or unable to disguise his status-consciousness. Hard to say if that’s due to a surfeit of self-awareness or its opposite

There is a long and sordid tradition of trying to <strong>diminish Darwin</strong>&nbsp;by insisting that his ideas are not original. A.N. Wilson is no more successful than his predecessors

Tue, 09/05/2017 - 18:59
There is a long and sordid tradition of trying to diminish Darwin by insisting that his ideas are not original. A.N. Wilson is no more successful than his predecessors

<p>Meet Henry George &mdash; economist, pamphleteer, journalist. Once famous, now dead and forgotten, he's the <strong>guru whom Silicon Valley</strong>&nbsp;doesn't know it needs</p>

Tue, 09/05/2017 - 18:59

Meet Henry George — economist, pamphleteer, journalist. Once famous, now dead and forgotten, he's the guru whom Silicon Valley doesn't know it needs

Descartes found imagination &ldquo;more of a hindrance than a help&rdquo;; Hume considered it &ldquo;faint and languid.&rdquo; Why do <strong>philosophers fear imagination</strong>?

Mon, 09/04/2017 - 18:11
Descartes found imagination “more of a hindrance than a help”; Hume considered it “faint and languid.” Why do philosophers fear imagination?

<strong>Jane Carlyle</strong> was the greatest letter writer of her time. A correspondent of Mill, Darwin, Forster, she is remembered as a genius. But a genius of what?

Mon, 09/04/2017 - 18:11
Jane Carlyle was the greatest letter writer of her time. A correspondent of Mill, Darwin, Forster, she is remembered as a genius. But a genius of what?

<p>"All that is solid melts into air," wrote Marx in the 19th century. He was premature. Postmodernity, which aspires to melt solids, arrived a century later. A <strong>pre-history of post-truth</strong></p>

Mon, 09/04/2017 - 18:11

"All that is solid melts into air," wrote Marx in the 19th century. He was premature. Postmodernity, which aspires to melt solids, arrived a century later. A pre-history of post-truth

Dr. Faustus, Dr. Frankenstein, Los Alamos &mdash; there are reasons to fear the <strong>power of labs</strong>. Is David Reich's ancient genetics lab at Harvard a threat to humanity?

Sun, 09/03/2017 - 18:18
Dr. Faustus, Dr. Frankenstein, Los Alamos — there are reasons to fear the power of labs. Is David Reich's ancient genetics lab at Harvard a threat to humanity?

<strong>Chester B. Himes</strong>&nbsp;disdained literary conventions. In prison, he reimagined himself as a new kind of "black literary realist." He was largely forgotten, until now

Sun, 09/03/2017 - 18:18
Chester B. Himes disdained literary conventions. In prison, he reimagined himself as a new kind of "black literary realist." He was largely forgotten, until now

<strong>Vivian Maier</strong>&nbsp;was a street photographer with hoarding tendencies who produced startling and memorable images. Most else about her life is a cloud of unknowns

Sun, 09/03/2017 - 18:18
Vivian Maier was a street photographer with hoarding tendencies who produced startling and memorable images. Most else about her life is a cloud of unknowns

In the early &lsquo;80s, <strong>E.B. White</strong> was an octogenarian widower. He'd want the company of a fan, right? "There&rsquo;s one of me, at most, and there are ten thousand of you. Please don&rsquo;t come"

Fri, 09/01/2017 - 16:58
In the early ‘80s, E.B. White was an octogenarian widower. He'd want the company of a fan, right? "There’s one of me, at most, and there are ten thousand of you. Please don’t come"

What makes <strong>popular-science books</strong> popular? The opportunity to measure your comprehension against the best minds. Falling behind is part of the thrill

Fri, 09/01/2017 - 16:58
What makes popular-science books popular? The opportunity to measure your comprehension against the best minds. Falling behind is part of the thrill

Few have played as central a role in the long, slow destruction of literary study as <strong>Stephen Greenblatt</strong>. And few have profited from it as much, professionally and financially

Fri, 09/01/2017 - 16:58
Few have played as central a role in the long, slow destruction of literary study as Stephen Greenblatt. And few have profited from it as much, professionally and financially

<strong>Nabokov</strong> insisted on written interviews. Why? &ldquo;I think like a genius, I write like a distinguished author, and I speak like a child&rdquo;

Thu, 08/31/2017 - 17:38
Nabokov insisted on written interviews. Why? “I think like a genius, I write like a distinguished author, and I speak like a child”

During the Gilded Age, some rich people dabbled in s&eacute;ances and breakfasted with corpses. Consider the portrait subjects of <strong>John Singer Sargent</strong>

Thu, 08/31/2017 - 17:38
During the Gilded Age, some rich people dabbled in séances and breakfasted with corpses. Consider the portrait subjects of John Singer Sargent

When Norman Mailer heard that <strong>Elizabeth Hardwick</strong> was reviewing him in <em>Partisan Review, </em> he pre-emptively bought an ad defending himself. She got the last word, of course

Thu, 08/31/2017 - 17:38
When Norman Mailer heard that Elizabeth Hardwick was reviewing him in Partisan Review, he pre-emptively bought an ad defending himself. She got the last word, of course