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Updated: 40 min 39 sec ago

&ldquo;<strong>Performance art</strong>&rdquo; once involved raucous Dadaists; now it&rsquo;s a Lady Gaga performance or Kanye West tweet. Why have pop stars started dealing in high-concept abstractions?

Tue, 05/22/2018 - 18:02
Performance art” once involved raucous Dadaists; now it’s a Lady Gaga performance or Kanye West tweet. Why have pop stars started dealing in high-concept abstractions?

&ldquo;I&rsquo;m the kind of writer that doesn&rsquo;t know jack shit about anything,&rdquo; says <strong>Stephen King</strong>. That might not put you off <em>The Stand</em>, but what about his poetry?

Mon, 05/21/2018 - 18:31
“I’m the kind of writer that doesn’t know jack shit about anything,” says Stephen King. That might not put you off The Stand, but what about his poetry?

For decades <strong>Thomas Kuhn</strong> struggled to square the thought of an independent reality with the thesis of a changing world. He died feeling like a failure

Mon, 05/21/2018 - 18:31
For decades Thomas Kuhn struggled to square the thought of an independent reality with the thesis of a changing world. He died feeling like a failure

In higher education, the ubiquity of innovation-speak masks a dearth of actual innovation. The latest fad: <strong>design thinking</strong>. It's a boondoggle

Mon, 05/21/2018 - 18:31
In higher education, the ubiquity of innovation-speak masks a dearth of actual innovation. The latest fad: design thinking. It's a boondoggle

No one questions <strong>Oscar Hammerstein</strong>&rsquo;s historical significance. But what explains the gap between his popularity and the middling esteem in which he is held by critics?

Sun, 05/20/2018 - 18:34
No one questions Oscar Hammerstein’s historical significance. But what explains the gap between his popularity and the middling esteem in which he is held by critics?

Do the <strong>sex lives of Surrealists</strong> tell us anything about their paintings? Not much. But it does make for wonderfully bizarre &mdash; if somewhat frivolous &mdash; reading

Sun, 05/20/2018 - 18:34
Do the sex lives of Surrealists tell us anything about their paintings? Not much. But it does make for wonderfully bizarre — if somewhat frivolous — reading

When erotic misadventures and poetry became tiresome for <strong>Byron</strong>, he turned to military command, with 600 Greek troops and an audacious plan. Fiasco followed

Sun, 05/20/2018 - 18:34
When erotic misadventures and poetry became tiresome for Byron, he turned to military command, with 600 Greek troops and an audacious plan. Fiasco followed

In 1985, a pilot program called Mozart-in-the-Parking-Lot discovered something surprising: You can <strong>fight crime with orchestral music</strong>

Fri, 05/18/2018 - 18:20
In 1985, a pilot program called Mozart-in-the-Parking-Lot discovered something surprising: You can fight crime with orchestral music

<strong>Espionage</strong> has inspired literature since Stendhal. The CIA even produces a partly classified journal devoted to the spy novel: <em>Studies in Intelligence</em>

Fri, 05/18/2018 - 18:20
Espionage has inspired literature since Stendhal. The CIA even produces a partly classified journal devoted to the spy novel: Studies in Intelligence

<strong>The Enlightenment </strong>started with philosophical insights spread by a new technology. We face a dominant technology &mdash; artificial intelligence &mdash; in search of a philosophy

Fri, 05/18/2018 - 18:20
The Enlightenment started with philosophical insights spread by a new technology. We face a dominant technology — artificial intelligence — in search of a philosophy

Precious and lilting, odd and interminable pauses, hanging in the air like "a thick cloud of oratorial perfume." What, exactly, is <strong>Poet Voice</strong>?

Thu, 05/17/2018 - 18:35
Precious and lilting, odd and interminable pauses, hanging in the air like "a thick cloud of oratorial perfume." What, exactly, is Poet Voice?

<strong>Life is a cacophony </strong>&mdash; cellphones, TVs, traffic. But there is probably no more noise than there used to be. What's changed is the amount of distraction

Thu, 05/17/2018 - 18:35
Life is a cacophony — cellphones, TVs, traffic. But there is probably no more noise than there used to be. What's changed is the amount of distraction

Dickens heard his characters speak. Woolf heard birds singing in Greek. The treatment for <strong>hearing voices</strong> has long been: ignore them. What if we listened instead?

Thu, 05/17/2018 - 18:35
Dickens heard his characters speak. Woolf heard birds singing in Greek. The treatment for hearing voices has long been: ignore them. What if we listened instead?

<strong>Lucian Freud</strong> ignored the rise of abstraction; <strong>David Hockney</strong> unfashionably persisted in depicting love and happiness. Britain&rsquo;s postwar painters had a talent for taboo-breaking

Wed, 05/16/2018 - 18:34
Lucian Freud ignored the rise of abstraction; David Hockney unfashionably persisted in depicting love and happiness. Britain’s postwar painters had a talent for taboo-breaking

Is an <strong>intellectual&rsquo;s responsibility</strong> to think, or to enact a political argument? The question once distinguished little magazines from think tanks, but that has changed

Wed, 05/16/2018 - 18:34
Is an intellectual’s responsibility to think, or to enact a political argument? The question once distinguished little magazines from think tanks, but that has changed

Useful in crime-scene investigations since China&rsquo;s Qin dynasty, <strong>fingerprinting</strong> confounded Darwin and absolved Picasso. Where, exactly, does the technique come from?

Tue, 05/15/2018 - 19:07
Useful in crime-scene investigations since China’s Qin dynasty, fingerprinting confounded Darwin and absolved Picasso. Where, exactly, does the technique come from?

An aesthete traipsing nimbly through an age of brutal rupture. <strong>Alain Locke</strong>, the first black Rhodes Scholar, advanced cultural pluralism even as the odds were against him

Tue, 05/15/2018 - 19:07
An aesthete traipsing nimbly through an age of brutal rupture. Alain Locke, the first black Rhodes Scholar, advanced cultural pluralism even as the odds were against him

Travel writing is a genre prone to indulgence but also capable of carrying considerable weight. <strong>Patrick Leigh Fermor</strong> was a master at managing that tension

Tue, 05/15/2018 - 19:07
Travel writing is a genre prone to indulgence but also capable of carrying considerable weight. Patrick Leigh Fermor was a master at managing that tension

Three ways in which <strong>democracies die</strong>: Coups, catastrophes, and technological takeovers. None of those are inevitable, but none have solutions.

Mon, 05/14/2018 - 18:34
Three ways in which democracies die: Coups, catastrophes, and technological takeovers. None of those are inevitable, but none have solutions.