March 23, 2021 | Philip Roth ensured that he had an extremely sympathetic biographer. But in the resulting biography, he still comes across as a spiteful obsessive... more »


March 22, 2021 | The birth of the audiobook dates to the 19th century, when Tennyson and Browning recorded poems for phonographs  ... more »


March 20, 2021 | The new literary moralism. Is this frenzy for censure and the expansion of the definition of harm how we’ll correct the inequities of our time?  ... more »


March 19, 2021 | Polymaths are one thing, freaks of intellect quite another. Even reading about these monsters of learning can leave one exhausted  ... more »


March 18, 2021 | From the Aztecs' “divine food” to the 18th-century smoke enema, the history of smoking is odder than typically presented ... more »


March 17, 2021 | A consensus has emerged on the right and the left, among the regressive populists and the progressive populists: liberals are the villains... more »


March 16, 2021 | Literary studies argues wrong. Because scholars value critical style over substance, academic culture grows misguided  ... more »


March 15, 2021 | Many people are committed to the idea that they’re biologically superior. Does social-science genetics give them scientific cover?   ... more »


March 13, 2021 | Being overshadowed by genius has destroyed many literary careers. For the Canadian critic Robert Fulford, something like the opposite occurred  ... more »


March 12, 2021 | College admissions is one of the few situations in which it’s rich people scrambling for a scarce resource. The result: our insane system of private schools... more »


March 11, 2021 | Liberal and center-left political parties — once champions of the working class — have become home to meritocrats, hence the party of the new aristocracy... more »


March 10, 2021 | When Robert Lowell left Elizabeth Hardwick for Caroline Blackwood and England, Hardwick decried his infidelity — both to her and to American literature   ... more »


March 9, 2021 | Remember the televangelists? We now have the Instavangelists, hawking a blend of self-care, wellness, astrology, and left-wing politics  ... more »


March 8, 2021 | Lolita’s greatest champion? Véra Nabokov. She saved it from fire and thought to publish it abroad, decrying domestic “strait-laced morality”  ... more »


March 6, 2021 | The French journal Le Débat is no more. Cause of death? American social theory. How the intellectual tides have turned   ... more »


March 5, 2021 | Camus, metereologist. At the Algiers Geophysics Institute, he grew increasingly disenchanted: “Observation here represents an arbitrary slice of reality”  ... more »


March 4, 2021 | Harold Bloom’s final books reveal that he was never the cosmopolitan we took him to be. Rather, his work is a beautiful, narrow province  ... more »


March 3, 2021 | We disagree not just over values and facts, but also over our very standards for determining what the facts are... more »


March 2, 2021 | "Americans’ dogmatism about democracy strengthens their attachment to it," says Mark Lilla, "but it weakens their understanding of it"  ... more »


March 1, 2021 | A social movement has successfully pushed the idea that people get to choose their own pronoun. How will things look a decade from now? ... more »


Feb. 27, 2021 | Wealthy colleges talk a lot about equity. But a chasm exists between symbolic gestures and real social progress  ... more »


Feb. 26, 2021 | Psychoanalysis and the novel. Authors and analysts are repositories of insight about our motives and behaviors   ... more »


Feb. 25, 2021 | Dear Abby, Dear Prudence, Ask Polly - we've reached Peak Advice. But are readers getting anything from all the edification?  ... more »


Feb. 24, 2021 | “The right advice to an ‘Unhappily Married Woman’ is not to tell her to imagine having sex with a different man, but as a different woman”  ... more »


Feb. 23, 2021 | Andy Owen went to war certain that he was advancing the cause of progress. He found a necessary rebuke in the work of John Gray... more »


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