Nov. 13, 2018 | Dickens died before putting the final touches on The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Theories abound as to his intent for Drood, but can we know for sure?... more »

Nov. 12, 2018 | Yuval Noah Harari's prophecies might have made him toxic in Silicon Valley. Instead the dystopian futurist is the darling of the tech elite... more »

Nov. 10, 2018 | Thomas More’s Utopia, published in 1516, contained the first fantasy map in a work of fiction. It was hardly the last... more »

Nov. 9, 2018 | Canadian fiction is often cloying and safe. What explains the absence of the socially ambitious Great Canadian Novel?... more »

Nov. 8, 2018 | Yes, nearly every great thinker of the past was sexist or racist or both. But that doesn't mean you can't admire them... more »

Nov. 7, 2018 | Nero wanted to kill his mother, but how? Poison wouldn’t work, weapons were too obvious, a defective boat somehow failed to sink... more »

Nov. 6, 2018 | The first "bottom-up" history of the world resides in an Austrian salt mine. "It's a global project — and its history is written by everyone"... more »

Nov. 5, 2018 | For 30 years, an unpublished manuscript about slaves and sailors in the Caribbean has been an underground sensation. Why is it reaching print only now?... more »

Nov. 3, 2018 | Before his Modernist masterpieces, the architect Philip Johnson devoted his talents to restoring Hitler’s reputation. Was he a Nazi spy?... more »

Nov. 2, 2018 | The most productive and worst botanist in history. Constantine Rafinesque described 6,000 “new” plant species. Many were well-known weeds... more »

Nov. 1, 2018 | Tales from a publishing family. Jane Austen was upset with a printing delay. And Charles Darwin was not amenable to making On the Origin of Species solely about pigeons... more »

Oct. 31, 2018 | The Better Angels of Our Nature, Bowling Alone, The New Jim Crow: What's the most influential book of the past 20 years?... more »

Oct. 30, 2018 | Prison camps, dystopia, terrorism, intelligentsia: Russian history has been a godsend for literature. And for political language as well... more »

Oct. 29, 2018 | We live in an age of epistemological mayhem. Bruno Latour, a contemporary philosopher, anticipated it or helped cause it. Or both... more »

Oct. 27, 2018 | A Simone Weil revival is underway. She was strange, intelligent, and idiosyncratic, but her life tells us much about ourselves... more »

Oct. 26, 2018 | Ursula K. Le Guin did not appreciate being labeled a science-fiction writer: “I’m a novelist and poet. Don’t shove me into your damn pigeonhole”... more »

Oct. 25, 2018 | Death of a bookman. Philip Dosse was a brilliant, eccentric, tyrant of a publisher. Then his empire of arts magazines failed... more »

Oct. 24, 2018 | This desire for unanimity permeates the literary world. One casualty: the insistence on accuracy by the “Translation Police.” We need them still... more »

Oct. 23, 2018 | Martin Duberman, godfather of gay studies, was warned by a therapist in 1955 about "the hopelessness of homosexual life." Now 88, he still feels damaged... more »

Oct. 22, 2018 | Russell Kirk was more littérateur than leader. But just think how different things might be had he, not William F. Buckley Jr., been the public face of conservativism... more »

Oct. 20, 2018 | Francis Fukuyama's instinctively dialectical habit of mind is at once precisely what America needs and what is precisely being ousted from the discourse... more »

Oct. 19, 2018 | In medieval texts, the planning and execution of a war might take up a paragraph. In modern writing, much less happens. How thinking supplanted action in literature... more »

Oct. 18, 2018 | Manure, wood shavings, hot peanuts, greasepaint, popcorn, burning sugar, sweat, despair: There's nothing like the smell of the circus... more »

Oct. 17, 2018 | Sotheby's and spectacle. Banksy’s autoshredding stunt reinforces how contemporary art is not so much about art but the documentation of an event... more »

Oct. 16, 2018 | Descriptions of the future are hopelessly tied to the gadgets of today. Ideas, not technology, drive the biggest historical changes... more »

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