Commentary — December 23, 2011, 3:18 pm

The Week on Harpers.org

Dear Readers,

With the deaths of Christopher Hitchens and Kim Jong Il, as well as the release of our January 2012 issue and David Brooks’s selection of Alan Lightman’s “The Accidental Universe” as one of the top magazine essays of the year, Harpers.org has been busier than usual this week. We’ve collected everything below for those who may have missed something engaging:

Thank you for reading, and subscribing, everyone. Happy holidays to you all.

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More from Harper’s Magazine:

Mentions July 16, 2014, 7:00 pm

“The End of Retirement” on MSNBC

Watch Jessica Bruder on MSNBC’s The Cycle

Official Business June 25, 2014, 8:00 am

Garry Winogrand at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

A retrospective exhibition from June 27 to September 21 in New York City

Heart of Empire, Mentions June 20, 2014, 11:41 am

Andrew Cockburn on Democracy Now

Andrew Cockburn discusses the origins and possible fate of Nouri al-Maliki’s prime ministership

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“For those riding the economy’s outermost edge, adaptation may now mean giving up what full-time RV dwellers call ‘stick houses’ to hit the road and seek work.”
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On Stanford University’s origins and vision
“The pervasive fantasy that Silicon Valley doesn’t need the government obscures the role of that government in funding much of the research that built it.”
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“Bethel was Oz-like for me. I mean that with all the awe, utter hopefulness, and mythic fear with which Dorothy and her friends had approached that magical city.”
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“A year and a half into his papacy, Pope Francis is looking an awful lot like his predecessors.”
Photograph (detail) © Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

Average number of sitcom laughs an American hears during a prime-time season:

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Czech and German deer still do not cross the Iron Curtain.

British economists correlated the happiness of a country’s population with its genetic resemblance to Danes.

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