= Subscribers only. Sign in here. Subscribe here.

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

1981 / September | View All Issues |

September 1981

illustration

Front cover PDF

Untitled·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.


Letters

4-7 PDF

Letters·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Letters

6-7 PDF

Trial by newsprint·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The easy chair

8, 10, 12 PDF

The counterfeit muse·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Notes on the official culture

Article

13-14, 16, 18 PDF

Island of instability·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Saudi Arabia, the Gulf’s latest protector

Washington

19-21 PDF

Washington·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Washington

19-21 PDF

The case for bankruptcy·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Inflation’s only enemy

Letter from abroad

22, 24, 26-28 PDF

Letter from abroad·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Letter from abroad

22, 24, 26-28 PDF

The newest class·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Yugoslavia’s impulse for division

Article

Front cover, 31-40 PDF

Money and art·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The paradox of patronage

Article

41-56 PDF

Panic among the Philistines·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The literary vulgarians

Cartoon

57-60 PDF

The bomb shelter of your dreams·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Catalogue for survival

Fiction

61-67 PDF

The year 1912·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

A story

Geography 105

68-69 PDF

Geography 105·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Geography 105

68-69 PDF

Women workers·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Books

70-72, 74-76 PDF

Pony or Pegasus·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The problem of mistranslation

Ars politica

77 PDF

Ars politica·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Ars politica

77 PDF

Ars politica·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

In print

78-80 PDF

In print·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

In print

78-80 PDF

Lots of mots·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Eighty-five hours with Mr. Proust

Poetry

80 PDF

Ukiyo – e·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

In our time

82 PDF

In our time·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

In our time

82 PDF

The evolution of the species·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

No. 5

Revisions

83-86 PDF

Revisions·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Revisions

83-86 PDF

Mind reading·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The forgotten Freud

The mind’s eye

87 PDF

The mind’s eye·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The mind’s eye

87 PDF

The force·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

American miscellany

88-93 PDF

American miscellany·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Puzzle

96 PDF

Sixes and sevens·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Get access to 167 years of
Harper’s for only $45.99

United States Canada

THE CURRENT ISSUE

December 2017

Document of Barbarism

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Destroyer of Worlds

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Crossing Guards

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“I am Here Only for Working”

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Dear Rose

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Year of The Frog

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content

FEATURED ON HARPERS.ORG

Article
Destroyer of Worlds·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

In February 1947, Harper’s Magazine published Henry L. Stimson’s “The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb.” As secretary of war, Stimson had served as the chief military adviser to President Truman, and recommended the attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The terms of his unrepentant apologia, an excerpt of which appears on page 35, are now familiar to us: the risk of a dud made a demonstration too risky; the human cost of a land invasion would be too high; nothing short of the bomb’s awesome lethality would compel Japan to surrender. The bomb was the only option. Seventy years later, we find his reasoning unconvincing. Entirely aside from the destruction of the blasts themselves, the decision thrust the world irrevocably into a high-stakes arms race — in which, as Stimson took care to warn, the technology would proliferate, evolve, and quite possibly lead to the end of modern civilization. The first half of that forecast has long since come to pass, and the second feels as plausible as ever. Increasingly, the atmosphere seems to reflect the anxious days of the Cold War, albeit with more juvenile insults and more colorful threats. Terms once consigned to the history books — “madman theory,” “brinkmanship” — have returned to the news cycle with frightening regularity. In the pages that follow, seven writers and experts survey the current nuclear landscape. Our hope is to call attention to the bomb’s ever-present menace and point our way toward a world in which it finally ceases to exist.

Illustration by Darrel Rees. Source photographs: Kim Jong-un © ITAR-TASS Photo Agency/Alamy Stock Photo; Donald Trump © Yuri Gripas/Reuters/Newscom
Article
Crossing Guards·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Ambassador Bridge arcs over the Detroit River, connecting Detroit to Windsor, Ontario, the southernmost city in Canada. Driving in from the Canadian side, where I grew up, is like viewing a panorama of the Motor City’s rise and fall, visible on either side of the bridge’s turquoise steel stanchions. On the right are the tubular glass towers of the Renaissance Center, headquarters of General Motors, and Michigan Central Station, the rail terminal that closed in 1988. On the left is a rusted industrial corridor — fuel tanks, docks, abandoned warehouses. I have taken this route all my life, but one morning this spring, I crossed for the first time in a truck.

Illustration by Richard Mia
Article
“I am Here Only for Working”·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

But the exercise of labor is the worker’s own life-activity, the manifestation of his own life. . . . He works in order to live. He does not even reckon labor as part of his life, it is rather a sacrifice of his life.

— Karl Marx

Photograph from the United Arab Emirates by the author. This page: Ruwais Mall
Article
The Year of The Frog·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

To look at him, Sweet Macho was a beautiful horse, lean and strong with muscles that twitched beneath his shining black coat. A former racehorse, he carried himself with ceremony, prancing the field behind our house as though it were the winner’s circle. When he approached us that day at the edge of the yard, his eyes shone with what might’ve looked like intelligence but was actually a form of insanity. Not that there was any telling our mother’s boyfriend this — he fancied himself a cowboy.

“Horse 1,” by Nine Francois. Courtesy the artist and AgavePrint, Austin, Texas
Article
Dead Ball Situation·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

What We Think About When We Think About Soccer, by Simon Critchley. Penguin Books. 224 pages. $20.

Begin, as Wallace Stevens didn’t quite say, with the idea of it. I so like the idea of Simon Critchley, whose books offer philosophical takes on a variety of subjects: Stevens, David Bowie, suicide, humor, and now football — or soccer, as the US edition has it. (As a matter of principle I shall refer to this sport throughout as football.) “All of us are mysteriously affected by our names,” decides one of Milan Kundera’s characters in Immortality, and I like Critchley because his name would seem to have put him at a vocational disadvantage compared with Martin Heidegger, Søren Kierkegaard, or even, in the Anglophone world, A. J. Ayer or Richard Rorty. (How different philosophy might look today if someone called Nobby Stiles had been appointed as the Wykeham Professor of Logic.)

Tostão, No. 9, and Pelé, No. 10, celebrate Carlos Alberto’s final goal for Brazil in the World Cup final against Italy on June 21, 1970, Mexico City © Heidtmann/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

Factor by which single Americans who use emoji are more likely than other single Americans to be sexually active:

1.85

Brontosaurus was restored as a genus, and cannibalism was reported in tyrannosaurine dinosaurs.

Moore said he did not “generally” date teenage girls, and it was reported that in the 1970s Moore had been banned from his local mall and YMCA for bothering teenage girls.

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

HARPER’S FINEST

Report — From the June 2013 issue

How to Make Your Own AR-15

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

By

"Gun owners have long been the hypochondriacs of American politics. Over the past twenty years, the gun-rights movement has won just about every battle it has fought; states have passed at least a hundred laws loosening gun restrictions since President Obama took office. Yet the National Rifle Association has continued to insist that government confiscation of privately owned firearms is nigh. The NRA’s alarmism helped maintain an active membership, but the strategy was risky: sooner or later, gun guys might have realized that they’d been had. Then came the shootings at a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, and at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, followed swiftly by the nightmare the NRA had been promising for decades: a dedicated push at every level of government for new gun laws. The gun-rights movement was now that most insufferable of species: a hypochondriac taken suddenly, seriously ill."

Subscribe Today