July 24, 2021 | A mystery novel by a pseudonymous author arrives with a warning: “Advance Promotional Copy: Do Not Read.” Was it just a ploy for virality, or something else?   ... more »


July 23, 2021 | The kind of writing that Janet Malcolm practiced so beautifully had long been disappearing when she died. Today it is nearly gone ... more »


July 22, 2021 | The symbolic and social-media triumphs of Black celebrity intellectuals do not translate into meaningful change for the masses  ... more »


July 21, 2021 | Our fact-challenged times have inspired a cottage industry testifying to the prescience of Hannah Arendt. But what was she actually saying?  ... more »


July 20, 2021 | Classics has been charged with racism, colonialism, and fascism. Some rush to condemn the field, others to defend it — but there’s a middle way   ... more »


July 19, 2021 | The future-oriented poetry of Osip Mandelstam’s contemporaries seems dated now. His words, however, have flourished with time ... more »


July 17, 2021 | Nuclear war, rising oceans, biotech gone mad — literature is awash with dystopian themes. We need a little more of the utopian impulse... more »


July 16, 2021 | Lauren Berlant’s “beautiful disservice”: making others believe “that the university was a place where love, care, and original thought could flourish”  ... more »


July 15, 2021 | America’s aspirational class assumes that its social and cultural capital are valued and coveted by all. They’re not   ... more »


July 14, 2021 | Almanacs strike a balance between practicality, poetry, and serendipity. The reward is a wonderfully freeing randomness   ... more »


July 13, 2021 | “If you call for a bookstore not to stock your enemy’s book or rejoice when a problematic classic is taken out of print, your enemy will do the same”  ... more »


July 12, 2021 | Ibram X. Kendi: The freakout over critical race theory isn’t a culture war with two sides — it’s CRT’s critics arguing among themselves   ... more »


July 10, 2021 | Will future generations read The Dream Songs? John Berryman makes an easy target in today’s cultural climate   ... more »


July 9, 2021 | A “Cat Person” quandary: How to feel when your relationship, rewritten and memorialized, becomes the world’s most viral short story... more »


July 8, 2021 | The Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa’s political writings were a sort of fugitive polemic — an attack on everything from a vantage point of nowhere   ... more »


July 7, 2021 | Alice Neel’s career as a struggling typist, stenographer, and painter raises a question: How do broke, self-supporting female artists do it?   ... more »


July 6, 2021 | Knowledge, truth, justice — why do we spend so much time arguing over grand abstractions? The answer is rooted in pragmatism   ... more »


July 5, 2021 | “The yeoman farmer as patriot and model citizen.” Did the influential books of early America contribute to cultural homogeneity?... more »


July 3, 2021 | A matter of taste. All responses to art are fundamentally personal, but not all are equally valid  ... more »


July 2, 2021 | Orwell's “Politics and the English Language” has been assigned to millions of students. We're doing them a disservice ... more »


July 1, 2021 | For Kant and Nietzsche, complaining and whining were weak, lowly actions. But Simone Weil saw beauty and magic in them... more »


June 30, 2021 | Harold Rosenberg ran with no packs and subscribed to no schools. He remained an individual amid collective credos and styles  ... more »


June 29, 2021 | As Adorno’s war against unthinking, nihilistic students shows, radical intellectuals should not always support leftist revolutionaries  ... more »


June 28, 2021 | Great storytellers are rarer than great writers, says the agent Morton Janklow. Was Jackie Collins a great storyteller?  ... more »


June 26, 2021 | Pablo Neruda’s memoir is stunningly vain, morally abhorrent, yet beautifully written. A new version renders it complete — or does it?... more »


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