From the Newsstand

February 19, 2009

A Guy, His Brother, and the Broken Mental Health System 0

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My neighbor and friend Jacob Lambert wrote a powerful piece for Philadelphia Weekly recently about his brother David, who has been diagnosed with acute bipolar disorder: I was at home in Bella Vista when he called. Last I’d heard he’d “eloped” from the hospital and was wandering his old East Village haunts. This was nothing […]

February 17, 2009

From the Newsstand: Michael Lewis on Shane Battier 0

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We at The Millions are fans of great sports journalism and of Michael Lewis, so recommending Lewis’ New York Times Magazine feature on Houston Rockets forward Shane Battier is a no-brainer. The hook: Here we have a basketball mystery: a player is widely regarded inside the N.B.A. as, at best, a replaceable cog in a […]

December 28, 2008

A List With A Twist Revisited 2

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In the spring, we reported on an unusual event unfolding in the Books pages of The Globe and Mail. Each week, through 2008, someone – typically a published author or an academic – would write an essay for the Globe championing a book. Fifty books in total. They were not ranked in any order, and […]

December 16, 2008

From the Newsstand: David Foster Wallace’s Philosophical Investigations 0

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Don’t let the lame title fool you – James Ryerson’s Times Magazine essay on David Foster Wallace’s early philosophical writings is a valuable step toward understanding both the novelist and the intellectual situation in which he found himself. Most substantially, Ryerson’s reading of Wallace’s senior thesis reveals a writer concerned not with language qua language, […]

November 21, 2008

Zadie Smith Looks at the Avant-Garde Novel 1

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In the current New York Review of Books, Zadie Smith dives deep into the philosophical frame of avant-garde novels in a review of Tom McCarthy’s Remainder. The article is, generally speaking, written more for an academic audience than a casual reader (if you don’t have a precise working definition of “lyrical realism” it can be […]

November 18, 2008

Gossip Girl and The New Yorker 3

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For some weeks now, in a pretense to professorial hipness, I’ve been using the TV show Gossip Girl as a sort of all-purpose pop-cultural referent with my students. Whenever I’m at a loss to explain a concept, I say something like, “This would be like on Gossip Girl, if Blair Waldorf told Serena van der […]

November 12, 2008

Dealing Another Hand of Liar’s Poker 2

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Three and a half years ago in some brief comments on Michael Lewis’ seminal memoir of Wall Street in the 1980s, Liar’s Poker, I noted, While the period that Lewis chronicles is interesting in its own right, its impact is somewhat diminished by the many corporate scandals and Wall Street improprieties that have occurred since […]

August 29, 2008

The Schizophrenic David Brooks 5

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What to call David Brooks’ column in the New York Times this morning? “Appalling” is the word that comes most readily to mind, but that is not quite what I mean. It is a hard piece of writing to classify. I think it was intended to be a parody of Obama’s speech, but what it […]

August 4, 2008

From the Newsstand: E to Z 1

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Again, the current issue of The New York Review of Books features one splendid fiction writer’s meditations on another brilliant fiction writer Last his time, it was Eisenberg on Nádas; this time it’s Zadie Smith considering the critical legacy of E.M. Forster, who provided the inspiration for On Beauty. As a novelist, Forster has suffered […]

July 25, 2008

Changing AP Style 2

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When you go to journalism school (or start out at most traditional journalism jobs), you are issued a style guide as a soldier might be issued a weapon. Quite a few places have their own in-house style guides, reflecting the vernacular peculiarities of the publication or its region. For all others, the default tends to […]