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Archive: 2009

One Notion: Individual

Discussed in this essay: Ayn Rand and the World She Made, by Anne C. Heller. Nan A. Talese. 567 pages. $35. Goddess of the Market: Ayn Rand and the American…

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¡Una Lesbiana Enamorada!

Discussed in this essay: Against Interpretation: And Other Essays, by Susan Sontag. Picador. 336 pages. $15. Reborn: Journals and Notebooks 1947–1963, edited by David Rieff. Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 336…

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New Books

An entire generation has grown up since the end of the Cold War, an event that, despite the persistence of Communist governments in China, Vietnam, North Korea, and Cuba, has…

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Mermaid Fever

The mermaid washed up on our public beach in the early morning of June 19, at approximately 4:30 a.m., according to the most reliable estimates. At 5:06 a.m. the body…

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Shalom on the Range

Believe me, there are Jews everywhere.—Bernard Malamud, “Angel Levine” i. I was nine years old when my mother forced me to convert from Judaism to Christianity. We had just moved…

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The Master of Spin Boldak

When I arrived in Quetta, the capital of Pakistan’s restive Baluchistan Province, I found the city’s old bazaar shuttered in preparation for Ashura, an important day of mourning in the…

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Praise to the Highways

From Antwerp, which will be published for the first time in English next year by New Directions. Bolaño’s “Luz Mendiluce Thompson” appeared in the March 2008 issue of Harper’s Magazine.…

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Masquerades

From a selection of posthumously discovered prose pieces published, for the first time in English, in the October issue of Poetry Magazine. By the time of his death in 1935,…

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Unshrinkable

From responses to a survey by the British Psychological Society in which psychologists were asked if there was “one nagging thing” they didn’t understand about themselves, posted October 5 on…

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Midnight Cowpoke

From September 23 proceedings in the case of Robert Melia, a police officer from Moorestown, New Jersey, who was videotaped engaging in sexual acts with calves in Southampton, New Jersey,…

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Guest in the Machine

From “Neurosecurity: Security and Privacy for Neural Devices,” by Tamara Denning, Yoky Matsuoka, and Tadayoshi Kohno, which appeared in July in Neurosurgical FOCUS. The authors are computer scientists at the…

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You’re a Mean One, Mr. Klig

From an exchange of letters and emails between Steven Klig, a Long Island attorney, and an FBI agent posing as his ex-girlfriend. In October, Klig began blackmailing the woman, whose…

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The Splendid Splintered

From an October 7 press release by the Alcor Life Extension Foundation, a nonprofit organization in Scottsdale, Arizona, that cryonically preserves members’ heads or bodies “with the intent of restoring…

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Spin the Bottle

From minutes of a May 28 meeting of the BPA Joint Trade Association. Bisphenol A (BPA) is a compound commonly used in plastic bottles and the linings of cans. Numerous…

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The Necessity of Agriculture

From a May 16 speech given in acceptance of the annual Louis Bromfield Society Award. Novelist and conservationist Louis Bromfield (1896–1956) was the author of over thirty works of fiction…

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Understanding Obamacare

The idea that there is a competitive “private sector” in America is appealing, but generally false. No one hates competition more than the managers of corporations. Competition does not enhance…

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Letters

Some Say in Fire As McKenzie Funk’s report [“Too Big to Burn,” October] reminds us, it was hard not to connect the conflagrations on Wall Street with those in southern…

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