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Books & arts
Slavery on screen
A meticulous adaptation of “The Underground Railroad”
Barry Jenkins, director of the ten-episode series, honours the ambition of Colson Whitehead’s novel
Religious history
Thinkers in America are debating Islam’s past and future
Contrasting views on Muslim history and the West from Mustafa Akyol, Shadi Hamid and Jonathan Laurence
Bitter pills
Patrick Radden Keefe traces the roots of America’s opioid epidemic
Introduced in 1996, OxyContin generated vast sales—and led to enormous suffering
Booty haul
When Napoleon stole a Venetian masterpiece
Cynthia Saltzman tells a poignant story of conflict and culture
Murder in the cathedral
The complex legacy of Thomas Becket’s life and death
An infamous medieval assassination echoes down the centuries
Acid test
Rahul Raina’s debut novel is a rollicking urban adventure
And a biting satire of inequality in India
Eyes wide open
The joy of cinema-going, as depicted on screen
Film-makers have captured the cineplex’s role as a place of escapism, inspiration—and terrible dates
The character arc of justice
For Stacey Abrams, politics and storytelling overlap
The many lives of an activist and novelist have a unifying plot-line
Rough justice
Kate Winslet and the economy of talent on screen
Her subtle performance in “Mare of Easttown” illustrates the gulf between superb actors and excellent ones
Cognitive psychology
Imaginative “framing” is the key to problem-solving
A new book, co-written by Kenneth Cukier, a senior editor at The Economist, is an ode to human ingenuity
Public art
Michael Rakowitz’s anti-war memorial
The Iraqi-American artist connects the Kent coast to Basra in an inspired condemnation of war
Renaissance art
Albrecht Dürer lived in a world of wonders
They inspired his art, which in turn has inspired his admirers for centuries
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