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Stranger Still: Kamel Daoud and Algeria

Adam Shatz in the NYT (photo: Ferhat Bouda/Agence Vu, for The New York Times): What impressed me about Daoud’s writing, both his journalism and his novel, was the fearlessness with which he defended the cause of individual liberty — a fearlessness that, it seemed to me, bordered on recklessness in a country where collectivist passions of nation and faith run high.

Pound’s Metro

William Logan in The New Criterion: As he recalled it, I got out of a train at, I think, La Concorde and in the jostle I saw a beautiful face, and then, turning suddenly, another and another, and then a beautiful child’s face, and then another beautiful face.

Evidence-based medicine: Save blood, save lives

Emily Anthes in Nature: In 2009, a major California hospital was looking for ways to cut costs. Stanford Hospital and Clinics was on track that year to purchase nearly US$6.8 million worth of blood for transfusions.


From Jam Tarts: How has your experience as a professor of creative writing and literature influenced your personal tastes?

How We Age

From The Scientist: Growing old is a fact of life. And there’s no mistaking it, given the increased fatigue, weakened bones, and ill health that generally accompany aging.

Economic Inequality: It’s Far Worse Than You Think

Nicholas Fitz in Scientific American: In a candid conversation with Frank Rich last fall, Chris Rock said, "Oh, people don’t even know.

What’s Wrong with the Economy—and with Economics?

Over at the NYRB (photo by Katherine Cecil): On March 14–15, 2015, The New York Review of Books Foundation, Fritt Ord, and the Dan David Prize held a conference, “What’s Wrong with the Economy—and with Economics?

Creativity and Constraint

The Singular Universe and the Reality of Time

Massimo Pigliucci in Scientia Salon: I have devoted a serious amount of time to reading the new book by Roberto Mangabeira Unger and Lee Smolin, The Singular Universe and the Reality of Time: A Proposal In Natural Philosophy [1].

Wednesday Poem

Genetics My father’s in my fingers, but my mother’s in my palms.  I lift them up and look at them with pleasure –  I know my parents made me by my hands.  They may have been repelled to separate lands,  to separate hemispheres, may sleep with other lovers,  but in me they touch where fingers link to palms.  With nothing left of their togetherness but friends  who quarry for their image by a river,  at least I know their marriage by my hands.  I shape a chapel where a steeple stands.  And when I turn it over,  my father’s by my fingers, my mother’s by my palms  demure before a priest reciting psalms.  My body is their marriage register.  I re-enact their wedding with my hands.  So take me with you, take up the skin’s demands  for mirroring in bodies of the future.  I’ll bequeath my fingers, if you bequeath your palms.  We know our parents make us by our hands.

Casual Sex May Be Improving America’s Marriages

Helen Fisher in Nautilus (scene from Before Sunrise): One-night stands; hooking-up; friends with benefits; living together; pre-nups; civil unions.


Justin Nobel at The Oxford American: On the fourth night of my journey I camp in woods owned by a Baptist deacon named Sammy Swinney.

In Dublin, beheading expositor speaks freely, potential victim censored

by Paul Braterman  "And if he insists on being killed … then at the end, by the authority of the ruling body, it's done." Sheikh Kamal El Mekki, who expounds with apparent approval the law on beheading ex-Muslims, spoke this February at Trinity College Dublin.

Israel: The Stark Truth

David Shulman at the New York Review of Books: And then there was his truly astonishing, by now notorious statement on election day itself, in which he urged Jewish voters to rush to the polls because “the Arabs are voting in droves.” One might have thought that those Arab voters were members of the body politic he headed as prime minister.

Would Telepathy Help?

Kat McGowan in Aeon (Anthony Quinn and Anna Karina on the set of 'The Magus'. 1976. Photo by Eve Arnold/Magnum): Every modern generation has had its own idiosyncratic obsession with telepathy, the hope that one human being might be able to read another person’s thoughts.

Faith, Hope, and Chemistry

Bert Keizer at the Threepenny Review: In my first year as a medical student I thought I had a pretty good notion of what medicine was all about.

Getting Personal

Anne Fausto-Sterling in Boston Review (Photo: Rachel Mack): During the 1950s peanut butter came in notoriously hard-to-close pry-top jars, and an enterprising rat in my family’s home took advantage.

How the Golden Age Lost Its Memory

Andrew Heisel in the LA Review of Books: THIS MAY BE a golden age of television, but it’s hard to feel particularly blessed about it.

Kerry Washington Brings the Fire in Her GLAAD Speech

E. Alex Jung in Vulture: Thank you Ellen, thank you Ellen, thank you Ellen, thank you Ellen, so much.

The Condition Cancer Research Is In

Sabrina Tavernise in The New York Times: In a letter to colleagues announcing his departure as the director of the National Cancer Institute, Dr.