Jan. 17, 2019 | Susan Sontag, self-improvement guru. Her goals included better posture, eating less, writing home more, and not publicly criticizing anyone at Harvard... more »


Jan. 16, 2019 | Artistic citizenship can mean simply sharing a local identity. It can also convey a social responsibility. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie on why she is not an “African writer”... more »


Jan. 15, 2019 | The real Socrates? Plato’s version is pure rationality. Xenophon’s dispenses practical advice, like the merits of dancing alone... more »


Jan. 14, 2019 | Online literary salons were unprofessional, charming, and reliant on free labor. No more. The golden age of book blogging is dead. In its stead: Bookstagram... more »


Jan. 12, 2019 | Elizabeth Anderson asks, ""What's the point of equality?"" Is she the philosopher best suited to this awkward moment in American life?... more »


Jan. 11, 2019 | When writers were considered dangerously influential. Inside the FBI dossiers on Sontag, Baldwin, Hemingway, Ginsberg, Du Bois... more »


Jan. 10, 2019 | A history of assassination. Firearms and explosives are the most popular methods, but perhaps not the most effective. Sometimes it takes an ice pick... more »


Jan. 9, 2019 | Editing Proust. When he died, in 1922, his manuscripts were riddled with inconsistencies: a character perishes on page 221, and is alive on page 257... more »


Jan. 8, 2019 | Degas, extraordinary artist and brilliant innovator, helped lead the 19th-century artistic vanguard. But he was a perfectly ordinary anti-Semite... more »


Jan. 7, 2019 | In 1842, Charles Dickens arrived in New York. He came to celebrate the American experiment. By the time he left, he was still enthralled — but also repulsed.... more »


Jan. 5, 2019 | Few spaces in American life today are exempt from the gentle but irksome dictates of mindfulness. Now the wellness-industrial complex has entrenched itself in the halls of art museums... more »


Jan. 4, 2019 | J.D. Salinger will forever be a writer oriented toward possibility. He never aged in public, and he wrote so compassionately about youth... more »


Jan. 3, 2019 | Wunderkind of socialism. How Bhaskar Sunkara built Jacobin, the most successful American ideological magazine to launch in the past decade... more »


Jan. 2, 2019 | James Watson in exile. More than a decade since his views on race and intelligence became public, he's been shunned but hasn't changed his mind... more »


Jan. 1, 2019 | In 2018 we said goodbye to Ursula K. Le Guin, Tom Wolfe, Philip Roth, V.S. Naipaul, and more than a few other writers. A look back at the year’s literary deaths... more »


Dec. 31, 2018 | In 1933, Houghton Mifflin published the first English edition of Mein Kampf — and then quietly profited from the book for decades... more »


Dec. 28, 2018 | Amos Oz, who chronicled over half a century of life in Israel, is dead. He was 79... Haaretz... The Guardian... Jane Eisner... Jonathan Freedland... Gal Beckerman... Amir Tibon... New York Times... Washington Post... Adam Kirsch... Tom Segev... Amy Wilentz... Dominic Green... more »


Dec. 27, 2018 | Harvard at 16, on Berkeley’s math faculty by 25, then ecoterrorism. Now the Unabomber’s ideas are spreading to a new generation... more »


Dec. 27, 2018 | A map of the moon. In 1647, Johannes Hevelius’s lunar atlas made him a celebrity. It featured continents, seas, bays, swamps, and marshes... more »


Dec. 26, 2018 | We think we are directly and immediately aware of our own thoughts. But what if conscious thought, judgment, and volition are all illusions?... more »


Dec. 25, 2018 | The science of wit. “Humor at its best is a kind of heightened truth — a super-truth,” E.B. White wrote. That principle has a corollary in nature: supernormal stimuli... more »


Dec. 24, 2018 | How to reconcile Philip Larkin's poems and prejudices? He thought his poems were for the public, whereas his letters were not. In that respect, the man was a gibbering dunce, says Clive James... more »


Dec. 22, 2018 | Toward the end of his life, Kurt Gödel grew frail and disturbed. He trusted only his wife to prepare his food. When she was hospitalized, disaster struck... more »


Dec. 21, 2018 | Claas Relotius, feature-writing wunderkind at Der Spiegel, has been revealed as a forger and fabricator. How he fooled the fact checkers... more »


Dec. 20, 2018 | Trust the process. The Oulipo produce literature by adopting a rule and seeing what happens. Anything goes as long as it somehow involves chance... more »


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