Oct. 5, 2016 | The Marquis de Sade as your guide to the modern office? His 120 Days of Sodom explains it all: hierarchy, accounting, bonuses, boredom... more »

Oct. 4, 2016 | Inside the nonsense machine. ?i?ek’s ideas are repellent, argues Roger Scruton. Behind the slick, occasionally persuasive writing lie “little pellets of poison”... more »

Oct. 3, 2016 | Where deconstruction came from. Americans blame French theorists, like Derrida, for the idea. Its rise, however, is an American story... more »

Oct. 1, 2016 | Poems are inefficient by design, like taking a long walk. That’s why a society that celebrates efficiency, profit maximization, and productivity needs them... more »

Sept. 30, 2016 | The notion of time travel beguiled Bertrand Russell, Kurt Gödel, and Stephen Hawking. Has any idea produced more convoluted and futile philosophical analysis?... more »

Sept. 29, 2016 | Philosopher problems. “All we do is gloss each other,” complained Montaigne in the 16th century. Since then the field’s issues have only worsened... more »

Sept. 28, 2016 | There's long been a vexed relationship between flesh and thought. We stubbornly cling to the hope of transcending the former to achieve a higher state of the latter   ... more »

Sept. 27, 2016 | Step aside, Ann Landers. The advice columnist has evolved into the advice artist, essayistic excavator of complexity and vulnerability ... more »

Sept. 26, 2016 | The boundary between science journalism and PR is so porous that the task of informing the public about science is often indistinguishable from efforts to promote it... more »

Sept. 24, 2016 | The genius of Duchamp’s “Fountain.” His porcelain urinal is more than a cultural oddity. It is both art and non-art, a self-referential philosophical paradox... more »

Sept. 23, 2016 | From 1876 until 2007, everyone used the telephone for talking. No longer. The cost of that change is dear: the human voice... more »

Sept. 22, 2016 | Epidemics of political insanity are unique: Islamists are distinct from Maoists. But they're united by an iconography and an attraction to dogmatism and violence... more »

Sept. 21, 2016 | Making sense of Mahler. His symphonies burst with seemingly incoherent themes and moods. The immensity of his productions are a problem -- and a gift ... more »

Sept. 20, 2016 | Smartphones haven't made us happier, but they've made us less aware of our unhappiness, says Andrew Sullivan. "There is no dark night of the soul anymore that isn’t lit with the flicker of the screen" ... more »

Sept. 19, 2016 | Are you a jerk? If the question causes genuine worry, you're probably not. But note: Often it's the most educated who are the least self-aware... more »

Sept. 17, 2016 | We're used to irony and polemic from our public intellectuals, but a higher standard is to be found. Exhibit A is Jürgen Habermas... more »

Sept. 16, 2016 | The virtue of analogies, said Wittgenstein, consists in "changing our way of seeing." But most offer just temporary distraction, not illumination ... more »

Sept. 15, 2016 | Philip Larkin's photographs. He picked up a camera as a child, and the images — striking, sensitive, emotion-filled — send us back to the poems with new eyes... more »

Sept. 14, 2016 | Secular national movements of the 20th century assumed that "decline was the destiny of all religions,” as Michael Walzer puts it. They were wrong. So is Walzer... more »

Sept. 13, 2016 | Against art history. It’s obsessed with obscure formalist twists, micromovements, and jargon-laden intellectualism. Real art is bigger than all that... more »

Sept. 12, 2016 | “Your mind is a country I find very agreeable.” wrote Iris Murdoch to Raymond Queneau. But is it really possible to enter the well-guarded secrecy of another life?... more »

Sept. 10, 2016 | The Frankfurt School, today. Adorno and Horkheimer didn’t live to see social media, but they would recognize its corruption of human personality... more »

Sept. 9, 2016 | American novels were once concerned with serious social problems and collective injustice. Now they focus on the individual, the lone genius, Twitter... more »

Sept. 8, 2016 | William Empson had nothing more than a serious amateur's interest in Eastern art, but this was a man undeterred by lack of expertise. Thus The Face of the Buddha... more »

Sept. 7, 2016 | The metamorphosis of Adrienne Rich. Patronizingly praised by Auden for poems that “speak quietly,” she developed a voice of towering rage... more »

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