= Subscribers only. Sign in here. Subscribe here.

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

1978 / September | View All Issues |

September 1978

illustration

Front cover PDF

Untitled·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.


Letters

4-6 PDF

Letters·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The easy chair

8, 10-11 PDF

Pomp and circumstance·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The market in kings

Article

12, 15-17, 20-21 PDF

The cancer lottery·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Risk rises with age

Article

28, 30-33 PDF

Against civil disarmament·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

On the futility of prohibiting guns

Article

35-42 PDF

Prometheus bound·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Rigging the odds against America

Article

Front cover, 43-50, 55-62 PDF

Oil and water·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

In the wake of the Argo Merchant

Article

74 PDF

Ivan Illitch’s syllogism·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Collection

74-75 PDF

[untitled]·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Fiction

76-82 PDF

Welcome to the arrow catchers fair·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

A short story

In our time

83 PDF

Modern etiquette II·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The coffee break

In our time

83 PDF

In our time·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Books

84-85, 88-90 PDF

RFK enshrined·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Books in brief

90, 94 PDF

Books in brief·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Reviews

95-99 PDF

In style·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Metamorphoses of the little black dress

American miscellany

100 PDF

American miscellany·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Puzzle

103 PDF

Tossed salad·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Get access to 165 years of
Harper’s for only $45.99

United States Canada

THE CURRENT ISSUE

September 2015

Weed Whackers

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Tremendous Machine

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

A Goose in a Dress

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Genealogy of Orals

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content

FEATURED ON HARPERS.ORG

Article
Romancing Kano·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

I recently spent a semester teaching writing at an elite liberal-arts college. At strategic points around the campus, in shades of yellow and green, banners displayed the following pair of texts. The first was attributed to the college’s founder, which dates it to the 1920s. The second was extracted from the latest version of the institution’s mission statement:

The paramount obligation of a college is to develop in its students the ability to think clearly and independently, and the ability to live confidently, courageously, and hopefully.

leadership
service
integrity
creativity

Let us take a moment to compare these texts. The first thing to observe about the older one is that it is a sentence. It expresses an idea by placing concepts in relation to one another within the kind of structure that we call a syntax. It is, moreover, highly wrought: a parallel structure underscored by repetition, five adverbs balanced two against three.

Article
The Prisoner of Sex·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“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.’”
Illustration by Shonagh Rae
Article
Gangs of Karachi·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“In Karachi, sometimes only the thinnest of polite fictions separates the politicians from the men who kill and extort on their behalf.”
Photograph © Asim Rafiqui/NOOR Images
Article
Weed Whackers·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“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
Article
The Neoliberal Arts·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“College is seldom about thinking or learning anymore. Everyone is running around trying to figure out what it is about. So far, they have come up with buzzwords, mainly those three.”
Artwork by Julie Cockburn

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 naked man believed to be under the influence of LSD rammed his pickup truck into two police cars.

Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!

HARPER’S FINEST

Subways Are for Sleeping

By

“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”

Subscribe Today