October 21, 2021
Laura Marsh
Are the Kids All Right?
If Jonathan Franzen’s earlier books were steeped in ironic social observation, Crossroads is an experiment in sincerity.
by Jonathan Franzen
Jorie Graham
They Ask Me
a poem
Matthew Aucoin
The More Fraught the Better
Throughout The Rake’s Progress, the steady friction between Stravinsky’s music and Auden’s poetry creates a musico-poetic compound that brims with energy and life.
Ben Lerner
The Storyteller
W.G. Sebald’s books suggest that we are powerless to remember adequately and powerless to forget.
Speak, Silence: In Search of W.G. Sebald
by Carole Angier
Fady Joudah
a poem
Carolina A. Miranda
‘Who Designs Your Race?’
At a time when Latino identity is in flux, El Museo del Barrio’s triennial embraces its fragmented nature.
Estamos Bien: La Trienal 20/21
an exhibition at El Museo del Barrio, New York City, March 13–September 26, 2021
Perry Link
The CCP’s Culture of Fear
In China under Xi Jinping, idealism is passé and conformity a shell for the ruthless pursuit of hierarchical power and private interests.
Martin Filler
Hollywood’s Master Builder
The African-American architect Paul R. Williams channeled the glamorous but breezy spirit of the Golden Age of Hollywood in designs that allowed his clients and the public to imagine themselves in fantasies akin to those spun out by the great movie studios.
Paul R. Williams: Classic Hollywood Style
by Karen E. Hudson, with photography by Benny Chan and a foreword by Michael S. Smith
Paul R. Williams
by Marc Appleton, Stephen Gee, and Bret Parsons
Regarding Paul R. Williams: A Photographer’s View
by Janna Ireland
Hollywood’s Architect: The Paul R. Williams Story
a documentary film directed by Royal Kennedy Rodgers and Kathy McCampbell Vance
Sue Halpern
The Human Costs of AI
Artificial intelligence does not come to us as a deus ex machina but, rather, through a number of dehumanizing extractive practices, of which most of us are unaware.
Atlas of AI: Power, Politics, and the Planetary Costs of Artificial Intelligence
by Kate Crawford
We, the Robots?: Regulating Artificial Intelligence and the Limits of the Law
by Simon Chesterman
Futureproof: 9 Rules for Humans in the Age of Automation
by Kevin Roose
The Myth of Artificial Intelligence: Why Computers Can’t Think the Way We Do
by Erik J. Larson
Gregory Hays
A Mind in Pain
For Robert Burton, describing melancholy was a way of describing the world. Two recent books on depression suggest that today, virtually all we know about the subject is still open to debate.
The Anatomy of Melancholy
by Robert Burton, edited by Angus Gowland
The Empire of Depression: A New History
by Jonathan Sadowsky
How to Be Depressed
by George Scialabba
Jenny Uglow
Napoleon’s Greatest Trophy
How a Venetian masterpiece ended up in the Louvre.
Plunder: Napoleon’s Theft of Veronese’s Feast
by Cynthia Saltzman
Jerome Groopman
What Does the Microbiome Do?
In Gut Feelings, Alessio Fasano and Susie Flaherty remind us that despite exaggerated claims from marketers, few applications of microbiome manipulation have been proven effective by clinical studies.
Gut Feelings: The Microbiome and Our Health
by Alessio Fasano and Susie Flaherty
Ursula Lindsey
In the Fire
The Egyptian feminist Nawal El Saadawi fearlessly told unpleasant truths about discrimination against women in Arab countries.
A Daughter of Isis: The Early Life of Nawal El Saadawi, In Her Own Words
translated from the Arabic by Sherif Hetata
Walking Through Fire: The Later Years of Nawal El Saadawi, In Her Own Words
translated from the Arabic by Sherif Hetata
The Hidden Face of Eve: Women in the Arab World
translated from the Arabic by Sherif Hetata and with a foreword by Ronak Husni
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Ed Park
A Poet’s-Eye View
Yi Sang, Korean literature’s perpetual enfant terrible, was not only a cutting-edge writer but a working architect, and his oeuvre teems with dark rooms, mirror worlds, and other uncanny spaces.
Yi Sang: Selected Works
edited by Don Mee Choi and translated from the Korean by Jack Jung, Don Mee Choi, and Joyelle McSweeney, and from the Japanese by Sawako Nakayasu
Jessica Riskin
Nature’s Evolving Tastes
In a new collection of essays on Darwin’s Descent of Man, a number of scientists claim that human and animal cultures emerge from the “purposeless process” of natural selection. Darwin himself said the opposite.
A Most Interesting Problem: What Darwin’s Descent of Man Got Right and Wrong About Human Evolution
edited by Jeremy DeSilva
The Origins of the World: The Invention of Nature in the 19th Century
an exhibition at the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, May 19–July 18, 2021
The Natural History of Edward Lear: New Edition
by Robert McCracken Peck, with a foreword by David Attenborough
Giles Harvey
‘All One’s Capacities’
Shirley Hazzard was a subversive traditionalist, a writer who perfected a form of realism before pushing against its limits in an effort to take the novel somewhere new.
Collected Stories
by Shirley Hazzard, edited by Brigitta Olubas and with a foreword by Zoë Heller
The Transit of Venus
by Shirley Hazzard, with an introduction by Lauren Groff
Clare Bucknell
Wits’ End
Pat Rogers’s new book is salutary because it gives us a modern sense of Alexander Pope, a figure usually portrayed as ultra-traditional.
The Poet and the Publisher: The Case of Alexander Pope, Esq., of Twickenham Versus Edmund Curll, Bookseller in Grub Street
by Pat Rogers
Charles Glass
Anything Can Happen
Notions of authorship, creator, and creatures, as well as of love, folly, and imagination, dominate Salman Rushdie’s and Ariel Dorfman’s retellings of Don Quixote.
by Ariel Dorfman
by Salman Rushdie
Ruth Franklin
‘The Lucky Ones’
Several groundbreaking new books chronicle the fate of the quarter-million or so Polish Jews who evaded Hitler only to wind up in the hands of Stalin.
In the East: How My Father and a Quarter Million Polish Jews Survived the Holocaust
by Mikhal Dekel
Survival on the Margins: Polish Jewish Refugees in the Wartime Soviet Union
by Eliyana R. Adler
Journey into the Land of the Zeks and Back: A Memoir of the Gulag
by Julius Margolin, translated from the Russian by Stefani Hoffman, with a foreword by Timothy Snyder and an introduction by Katherine R. Jolluck
Christine Bednarz,
Stephen Kinzer
What Is the N.E.D.’s Mission?
Simon Watney,
Linda Colley
Country House Equality
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