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Lone Star Literature
A Texas Tale: Billy Lee Brammer and The Gay Place

In 1961, a young LBJ aide wrote the greatest political novel you’ve never heard of—and then vanished into drug-fueled obscurity. A new biography tells his story.

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Wikimedia Commons
Class Coalition
The Return of William McKinley’s Republican Party

Republicans are struggling with the question: What kind of party do we want to be? They might look to William McKinley for guidance.

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Norman Rockwell, “Freedom of Worship” (Wikimedia Commons)
Secular Religion
Finding Faith and Losing Religion in Flyover Country

Meghan O’Gieblyn’s new essay collection cuts to the heart of America’s cultural divide—and reveals the ties that bind secular progressives and fundamentalist Christians alike.

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“The Doctor,” Sir Luke Fildes (1891) via Wikimedia Commons
What’s Really Wrong with U.S. Health Care
When “Profit” Is Just Another Word for “Waste”

Robert M. Kaplan’s More Than Medicine offers a genteel, scholarly presentation of the dumpster fire that is the American health care system, but he fails to place blame for it squarely where it belongs: the U.S. health care business model.

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The Bosses of the Senate by Joseph Keppler (Wikimedia Commons)
Congressional Oversight
Getting a Bead on Greed

One of the lesser-known tragedies of the past decade is the decline of bipartisan Congressional investigations. A new book by Elise Bean illuminates the history.

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Katsushika Hokusai, “The Great Wave”
The Quest to Conquer Risk
How Businesses Master Disaster

Two new books offer complementary takes on best practices for understanding and adapting to the fundamentally changing nature of business risk.

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Star-Crossed Cultures
Cold War Kids

Pawel Pawlikowski’s Cold War is an ambivalent film: Though it makes no apologies for communism, its attitude toward the West feels decidedly bitter.

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Graphic by Danielle Desjardins
Hope vs. Fear
The Star Wars Theory of History

Jon Meacham’s new book casts U.S. history as a battle between the forces of darkness and light, with all-powerful Presidents dueling for the nation’s soul.

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Photo by Ian Cochrane via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)
Democracy in Africa
Nigeria at the Ballot Box

As elections loom in Africa’s most populous country, a timely new book dispels common myths about Nigeria’s democracy—and reveals the broader stakes for the continent.

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No Reset
The Unquiet American

Michael McFaul’s memoir throws into sharp relief the failures of America’s Russia policy.

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We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.