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1979 / September | View All Issues |

September 1979

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Letters

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The easy chair

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Blindman’s bluff·

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The lost sight of the imagination

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Of two minds about abortion·

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Bringing mixed motives to bed

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Rewriting the Constitution·

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Life, liberty, and a balanced budget

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A proper education·

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The trade-off between method and motive

Lines of sight

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Energy independence·

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Lines of sight

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Lines of sight·

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Fiction

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Rendezvous with Margret or·

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Happy ending

In our time

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In our time

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Article

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Images of anonymity·

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World War II in black and white

Poetry

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There are things I tell to no one but to the poem·

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Movies

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Gooseflesh·

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The strange turn toward horror

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Styron’s heavy freight·

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Sex, guilt, and the Holocaust too

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Ineffable pleasures·

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The variety of short stories

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The fourth estate

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American miscellany

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Going nowhere fast·

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The rat race, more or less

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Puzzle

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"The past is complicated, and explaining it is not just a trick, but a gamble."
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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."
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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.

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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."
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Average amount of time a child spends in Santa Claus’s lap at Macy’s (in seconds):

37

Beer does not cause beer bellies.

Following the arrest of at least 10 clowns in Kentucky and Alabama, Tennesseans were warned that clowns could be “predators” and Pennsylvanians were advised not to interact with what one police chief described as “knuckleheads with clown-like clothes on.”

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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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