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Archive: 2019

The Sleepwalkers and Rope-a-Dope

The Sleepwalkers and Rope-a-Dope, mixed-media artworks by Deborah Roberts, whose work was on view in July at Stephen Friedman Gallery, in London. Courtesy the artist and The Studio Museum in…

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Protocol or: A Contribution on the Renaissance as Compiled Jointly with My Uncle Josef

From Why I Write?, a collection of prose published this month by Karolinum Press. Hrabal (1914–1997) was a Czech writer known for his novels Closely Watched Trains and I Served…

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Body Language

I am eight years old, sitting in my childhood kitchen, ready to watch one of the home videos my father has made. The videotape still exists somewhere, so somewhere she…

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Song of My Shelf

From sentences in movie reviews by James Patterson. I’m a little nuts and a little sickIt should be obvious that I like preposterous storiesStephen King commented that he doesn’t have…

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Lefty Lingo

The only letter I’ve ever sent to the New York Times was in the 1980s, objecting to the paper’s suddenly pestilent use of “draconian.” During Iran–Contra the complaint must have…

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Clear History

Past behaviors, described and reported online, that individuals successfully lobbied Google to remove from its search results under the European Union’s “right to be forgotten” law. Publishing a poem on…

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Faulty Towers

From reports of conditions in the New York City Housing Authority’s public-housing units since 2017. Unidentified children likely poisoned by lead paintMold in the apartments of asthmaticsBroken air conditioners in…

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Findings

Hydrocarbon fuels can now be produced with sunlight and air, making them carbon-neutral; the hole in the ozone layer was shrinking; and the first successful climate model of the early…

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Gimme Shelter

I. That year, the year of the Ghost Ship fire, I lived in a shack. I’d found the place just as September’s Indian summer was giving way to a wet…

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Workbench with Underwood

Workbench with Underwood, a painting by Dickon Drury, whose work was on view in August at Koppe Astner, in Glasgow, Scotland. Courtesy the artist; Koppe Astner, Glasgow, Scotland; and Galerie…

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Single Blood

For Rebeca López, from Bleeding from All 5 Senses, published this month by White Pine Press. Translated from the Spanish by Cole Heinowitz. You were born from the sperm of…

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Roy Meets World

From an untitled essay in Book of Roy, a collection of photographs by Neil Drabble that was published in October by MACK. Tillman’s essay accompanies Drabble’s photographs of an American…

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“Composition with Painted Cutouts”

“Composition with Painted Cutouts,” a photograph by Nico Krijno, whose work was on view in June at Elizabeth Houston Gallery, in New York City. Read More

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The Beast in Me

From South American Journals, a collection of Ginsberg’s spiritual writing published last month by the University of Minnesota Press. This entry is the author’s account of an ayahuasca experience in…

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Being in Nothingness

From The Longing for Less: Living with Minimalism, a work of criticism that will be published next month by Bloomsbury. In the midst of existence, most living things deny time.…

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Burning Down the House

Discussed in this essay: Plagued by Fire: The Dreams and Furies of Frank Lloyd Wright, by Paul Hendrickson. Knopf. 624 pages. $35. Frank Lloyd Wright isn’t just the greatest of…

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I Follow the Sunlight Around the Lawn

From Little Hill, which will be published in April by City Lights. I follow the sunlight around the lawn With a ridiculous plastic chair A chair has its task and…

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Letters

Lost Clauses The participants in the Forum on the Constitution [“Constitution in Crisis,” October] offer wonderful insights. However, they do not sufficiently celebrate the Constitution’s virtues—nor do they address its…

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The Red Dot

That night at the window, looking out at the street full of snow, big flakes falling through the streetlight, I listened to what Anna was saying. She was speaking of…

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New Books

  Questions about the future of Islam in Europe tend to revolve around “Europeans,” reflexively imagined as native-born and white. If reactionary nationalists fear the influence of an “alien” culture,…

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Trash, Rock, Destroy

The writer and filmmaker Virginie Despentes lives in a nondescript modern building in the Belleville neighborhood of Paris. I know it well: it has a Bricorama—like a French Home Depot—on…

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The Pillar

Photographs by Stephen Gill from The Pillar, a monograph published this year by Nobody Books. Gill photographed a pillar and the birds it attracted on his property in Skåne, Sweden,…

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Make Way for Tomorrow

When we visited the city of Colón on Panama’s Caribbean coast in February, a woman named Argentina stood in front of a collapsing building, surrounded by plastic bags filled with…

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Our Town

Our Town, a painting by Amy Bennett, whose work was on view in August at Miles McEnery Gallery, in New York City. Courtesy the artist and Miles Mcenery Gallery, New…

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Harper’s Index

Number of new Christmas films that will debut on Hallmark channels this year : 40 Percentage of the world’s internet traffic that is attributable to Netflix : 12 Percentage increase…

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San Francisco Blues

I am aware, of course, that San Francisco’s reputation is based largely upon reminiscence. Much of its glamour belongs to a past upon which the native is only too prone…

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