Opera for a Shattered World All’s Atonal on the Western Front
This year’s Salzburg Festival performance of Alban Berg’s 1925 opera Wozzeck captures the essence of World War I and the violent potential of mankind’s dehumanizing tendencies.
A Dismal Performance
Much like the Spanish Inquisition, no one expected the Great Recession. Why didn’t America’s highly paid economists have a clue? Will they ever get their act together?
Ken Burns's The Vietnam War The War That Never Ends
The Vietnam War gets Ken Burns’s signature “docutainment” treatment, and the result is a worthy one, if not always up to full scholarly standards.
Presidential Power Doing the Impossible
Jeremi Suri’s The Impossible Presidency grounds contemporary debates about the presidency in a historical understanding of the office—and shows why its recent occupants don’t measure up.
Philosophy & Policy To Whom Respect Is Due
Matthew B. Crawford’s The World Beyond Your Head is a thoughtful philosophical discourse on modernity and its discontents—with plenty of resonance for our current political moment.
Or how to “throw” your screen.
Food for Thought They Were What They Ate
How much does the contents of one’s plate reflect the content of one’s character? One new book argues: quite a lot.
Opera The Once and Future Macbeth
Verdi’s opera Macbeth showcases in thrilling music the crux of Shakespeare’s play: that humans have free will, and suffer the consequences.
Review The Lost Leviathan
Perry Anderson’s critique of liberal hegemony was written before Donald Trump’s unexpected victory in November of last year. And in a way, Trump’s election might serve as a vindication of Anderson’s attack.
Racism and Incarceration Locked In
“Racism” is the easy answer to the question of how America’s prisons got so full of African Americans. A new book offers a more complex and hopeful view.
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