June 1, 2017 | Schools of thought in philosophy and cultural theory are transient. They coalesce, evolve, break apart. So how has the Frankfurt School endured for three generations?... more »

May 31, 2017 | When Shirley Jackson arrived at the hospital and was asked her occupation, she said “writer.” The nurse responded, “I’ll just put down housewife"... more »

May 30, 2017 | It's where Confucius and Lao Tzu went to think, where Li Bai and Du Fu went to find words, where Mao demonstrated his authority. In China, everything starts with a river... more »

May 29, 2017 | Shakespeare and the brain. Stephen Booth is a literary critic with a penetrating view of poetic language. He's transformed our understanding not only of Shakespeare but also of how we think... more »

May 27, 2017 | At 32 Nietzsche left Basel to recuperate in Sorrento. There he separated himself from Wagner, which was odd — Wagner was also in Sorrento... more »

May 26, 2017 | How can we be? The fMRI can't identify the source of consciousness, but it can bring the problem into sharper relief... more »

May 25, 2017 | Pound and Eliot. Lish and Carver. Brod and Kafka. Fiction editors sit uncomfortably at the intersection of art and commerce. The role is ripe for recrimination... more »

May 24, 2017 | It used to be simple: dark suit, white shirt, discreet tie, black oxfords. Then came "casual Fridays" — and all we lost by dressing down... more »

May 23, 2017 | Is intersectionality solving social ills? Or does it make us stupid? The academic theory, once obscure, is now everywhere... more »

May 22, 2017 | In 2011, Daryl Bem, a social psychologist, published a paper in a top journal suggesting that ESP is real. That touched off a crisis of confidence in science. Should he be thanked or blamed?... more »

May 20, 2017 | Travel writing is not all Kerouac and Chatwin. In fact, it doesn’t have to involve traveling farther than around a room... more »

May 19, 2017 | A decade ago, highly confessional first-person writing began to flood the internet. Now it’s nearly vanished. What killed the personal essay?... more »

May 18, 2017 | For four days at a sold-out, $1,250-per-ticket conference at a Boston hotel, content marketers offered a vision of the future of media. It's terrifying... more »

May 17, 2017 | “The past is yours, to keep invisible if you wish,” wrote John Ashbery. His own past is quite public, including a 1,000-page teenage diary... more »

May 16, 2017 | Encouraged by success, F. Scott Fitzgerald continued in a lofty, literary, yet Hollywood-ready mode. But the demands of art and audience rarely aligned... more »

May 15, 2017 | Do you believe that technology should speed up and intensify? Are you OK with social and political upheaval? Then you might be an accelerationist... more »

May 13, 2017 | While his archrival eluded the KGB to cruise boy bars, Emil Gilels, foremost pianist of the Soviet era, fell in line. In the end, it didn’t matter... more »

May 12, 2017 | Christophe Guilluy, who calls himself a geographer, studies gentrification in France. Ideologically and intellectually, he is difficult to place. He's becoming impossible to ignore... more »

May 11, 2017 | Pointed hats, broomsticks, caldrons, cats. Why do we assume witches look a certain way? Blame the rise of the mass-produced woodcut... more »

May 10, 2017 | You’re in your early 20s, your first book is a big success, you're called a genius. How would you react? If you're Dostoevsky, you'd become an insufferable jerk... more »

May 9, 2017 | Poor Nietzsche. Not only is he blamed for World War I and Nazism, but he's maligned as the godfather of postmodern relativism. Nonsense. He was a champion of the Enlightenment... more »

May 8, 2017 | Shakespeare receives a disproportionate amount of attention. He's unavoidable. But his dominance serves a purpose: It keeps the literary ecosystem functioning... more »

May 6, 2017 | Ezra and Papa. They partied in Paris, promoted each other's work, and took up boxing. Then Hemingway moved to Key West, and Pound took an interest in Italian politics... more »

May 5, 2017 | Fake Modiglianis began to emerge in the 1920s, soon after his death. Now he is one of the world's most faked artists. There are even fake fakes... more »

May 4, 2017 | Sex letters. James Joyce sent them. So did Georgia O’Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz. Proust sent one to his grandfather. In the age of Tinder, does the sex letter have staying power?... more »

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