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1965 / October | View All Issues |

October 1965

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Untitled·

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Letters

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The easy chair

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How to prevent organizational dry rot·

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After hours

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Goodbye to world’s fairs·

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After hours

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A free theater for Mississippi·

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Article

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Bill Moyers·

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Johnson’s good angel

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The coming upheaval in psychiatry·

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Collection

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The coming upheaval in psychiatry·

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Reviews

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To read more . . .·

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Article

60 PDF

His honor the mayor·

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’twas ever thus

Fiction

61-64 PDF

Like a bad dream·

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A story

Poetry

64 PDF

Korea bound, 1952·

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Article

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The movies students make·

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New wave on campus

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What ails the journalism schools·

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Collection

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What ails the journalism schools·

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Article

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Reporter’s front seat·

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Poetry

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The return·

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92-94, 96 PDF

Automation and imagination·

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The most powerful governor in the U.S.A.·

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Poetry

102 PDF

Sacred objects·

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Notice

106 PDF

The writer’s life·

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Part II

Washington insight

108, 110, 112, 115-116, 118-119 PDF

The new political non-job·

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[Coming in Harper’s]

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[Coming in Harper's]·

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The new books

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A lawyer’s brief before the bar of history·

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A scapegoat in need·

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The year of the Swedes in China·

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Books in brief

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Music in the round

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Offerings to the gods·

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Jazz notes

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Collection

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In defense of editing·

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A literary nation?·

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Deafened·

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Lost in the bookshops of New York·

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When writers don’t write

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On misusing the past

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A welfare state for writers?

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“In Season 5 of Louie (FX), Louie is a new kind of superhero. Like Wonder Woman, the canonical superhero he most resembles, Louie’s distinctive superpower is love.”
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On a Friday evening in January, a thousand people at the annual California Native Plant Society conference in San Jose settled down to a banquet and a keynote speech delivered by an environmental historian named Jared Farmer. His chosen topic was the eucalyptus tree and its role in California’s ecology and history. The address did not go well. Eucalyptus is not a native plant but a Victorian import from Australia. In the eyes of those gathered at the San Jose DoubleTree, it qualified as “invasive,” “exotic,” “alien” — all dirty words to this crowd, who were therefore convinced that the tree was dangerously combustible, unfriendly to birds, and excessively greedy in competing for water with honest native species.

In his speech, Farmer dutifully highlighted these ugly attributes, but also quoted a few more positive remarks made by others over the years. This was a reckless move. A reference to the tree as “indigenously Californian” elicited an abusive roar, as did an observation that without the aromatic import, the state would be like a “home without its mother.” Thereafter, the mild-mannered speaker was continually interrupted by boos, groans, and exasperated gasps. Only when he mentioned the longhorn beetle, a species imported (illegally) from Australia during the 1990s with the specific aim of killing the eucalyptus, did he earn a resounding cheer.

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“It is disappointing that parts of Purity read as though Franzen urgently wanted to telegraph a message to anyone who would defend his fiction from charges of chauvinism: ‘No, you’ve got me wrong. I really am sexist.’”
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“In Karachi, sometimes only the thinnest of polite fictions separates the politicians from the men who kill and extort on their behalf.”
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“Defining 'native' and 'invasive' in an ever-shifting natural world poses some problems. The camel, after all, is native to North America, though it went extinct here 8,000 years ago, while the sacrosanct redwood tree is invasive, having snuck in at some point in the past 65 million years.”
Photograph by Chad Ress

Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:

65

An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.

A tourism company in Australia announced a service that will allow users to take the “world’s biggest selfies,” and a Texas man accidentally killed himself while trying to pose for a selfie with a handgun.

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