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1978 / January | View All Issues |

January 1978

illustration

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Letters

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The easy chair

7-8, 11 PDF

Deadly virtue·

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The willful innocence of Jimmy Carter

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33-37 PDF

Utopia in trouble·

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The problems of Sweden’s superdevelopment

Poetry

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In another country·

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Article

55-58 PDF

Juxtapositions·

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Fiction

59-65 PDF

Rat song·

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A story

In our time

76 PDF

In our time·

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In our time

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Boyhood dreams·

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When I grow up

Books

84-86 PDF

The bad news girls·

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Books in brief

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The fourth estate

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The fourth estate·

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Puzzle

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New wine in old bottles·

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"The past is complicated, and explaining it is not just a trick, but a gamble."
Illustration by Jimmy Turrell
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"Perfectly sane people lose access to housing every day, though the resultant ordeal may undermine some of that sanity, as it might yours and mine."
Photograph © Robert Gumpert
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"'We don’t know where the money went!' a woman cried out. 'They looted it! They stole our money!'"
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Flor Arely Sánchez had been in bed with a fever and pains throughout her body for three days when a July thunderstorm broke over the mountainside. She got nervous when bolts of light flashed in the sky. Lightning strikes the San Julián region of western El Salvador several times a year, and her neighbors fear storms more than they fear the march of diseases — first dengue, then chikungunya, now Zika. Flor worried about a lot of things, since she was pregnant.

Late in the afternoon, when the pains had somewhat eased, Flor thought she might go to a dammed-up bit of the river near her house to bathe. She is thirty-five and has lived in the same place all her life, where wrinkled hills are planted with corn, beans, and fruit trees. She took a towel and soap and walked out into the rain. Halfway to the river, the pains returned and overcame her. The next thing Flor remembers, she was in a room she didn’t recognize, unable to move. As she soon discovered, she was in a hospital, her ankle cuffed to the bed, and she was being investigated for abortion.

Photograph by Joshua Lutz
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"The next thing Flor remembers, she was in a room she didn’t recognize, unable to move. As she soon discovered, she was in a hospital, her ankle cuffed to the bed, and she was being investigated for abortion."
Photograph © Nadia Shira Cohen

Average number of new microwave food products introduced every day In 1987:

2

Cocaine addicts prefer $500 in cash now to $1,000 worth of cocaine later.

Scientists in the Galápagos Islands credited an endangered giant tortoise named Diego with saving his species by fathering more than 800 offspring.

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Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'

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