Art

Art, Sketch — June 27, 2018, 11:15 am

The Lesser of Two Evils

The devil you don’t know: on Central American violence and the United States’ stance on the undocumented

Art — May 29, 2018, 10:19 am

Roosevelt, Arlington National Cemetery

“Roosevelt, Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA,” a photograph by Charlotte Dumas from her series Anima, which portrays the burial horses of Arlington National Cemetery. Dumas’s work is currently on view at the Chrysler Museum of Art, in Norfolk, Virginia. Credit: © The artist. Courtesy Julie Saul Gallery, New York City

Art — January 16, 2018, 4:04 pm

Motherhood, 1938

Caption: "Motherhood, 1938," a photograph by Boris Ignatovich, whose work is on view this week at Nailya Alexander Gallery, in New York City. Credit: © Boris Ignatovich. Courtesy Nailya Alexander Gallery, New York City

Art — December 5, 2017, 12:22 pm

Huisache Tree, Mexico

“Huisache Tree, Mexico,” a hand-colored photograph by Kate Breakey, whose work is on view through January 13 at Littlejohn Contemporary, in New York City

Art, Photography — September 12, 2017, 5:48 pm

Volunteer Army

On August 25, Hurricane Harvey made landfall in southern Texas. The Category 4 tropical cyclone caused widespread flooding in the greater Houston area, killing at least seventy people and driving 30,000 from their homes. On September 3, photographer Balazs Gardi followed an armed group of local volunteers as they delivered supplies to flood victims in the rural towns of Vidor and Mauriceville. View photos...

Art — September 6, 2017, 11:33 am

Lacs de Montagne

Lacs de Montagne, engraving, etching, aquatint, and drypoint, by Louise Bourgeois, which will be on view as part of the exhibition Louise Bourgeois: An Unfolding Portrait at the Museum of Modern Art, New York City, from September 24, 2017, to January 28, 2018. Courtesy the Museum of Modern Art, New York City. Gift of the artist. © 2017 The Easton Foundation/Licensed by VAGA, New York City

Annotation — August 29, 2017, 1:24 pm

Trumpeter Storm

1: As 12,000 members of the National Guard rushed to the scene and hundreds more volunteers joined the relief efforts, President Trump tweeted: “Thanks!” Read more...

Art, Sketch — August 9, 2017, 2:05 pm

Capitol Punishment

An artist’s rendition of a closed session of Congress.

Art — June 27, 2017, 3:24 pm

Rollercoaster

Rollercoaster, a collage created using oil-painted paper and vintage magazine clippings by Cheryl Molnar, whose work is on view this week at Wave Hill House, in the Bronx, New York. Courtesy the artist and Wave Hill

Art — April 25, 2017, 11:47 am

Portrait

"Portrait," a photograph by Louise Lawler, whose retrospective WHY PICTURES NOW opens on Sunday at the Museum of Modern Art, in New York City © The artist. Courtesy the artist and Metro Pictures, New York City

Art, Sketch — April 18, 2017, 5:49 pm

Same Old, Same Old

Palestinian-Americans on the meaning of Donald Trump’s presidency. Read more…

Annotation — April 6, 2017, 6:10 pm

Dressed to Kill

Jared Kushner goes to Iraq

Art, Caption — March 24, 2017, 4:52 pm

Ups and Downs

Pictured here is a thumbs-up paired with a frown. Read more…

Art, Sketch — March 9, 2017, 10:00 am

No Place Like Home

Illustrations depicting the lives of children living in Honduras, which has one of the highest murder rates in the world. Thousands of young Honduran refugees have fled the country’s chronic poverty and violence for the United States and Mexico, where they are often turned away. According to Amnesty International, the number of asylum applications filed worldwide by Hondurans in 2015 was 16,473, a 700 percent increase from 2011. See more...

Art, Sketch — January 30, 2017, 10:00 am

Hawks and Doves

Scenes of family detention centers in the United States juxtaposed with illustrations of mourning doves migrating from Central America to Canada.

Art, Photography — January 22, 2017, 12:28 pm

The First Day

Scenes from Donald Trump’s inauguration in Washington, D.C. All photographs by Philip Montgomery for Harper’s Magazine.

Art, Sketch — January 20, 2017, 12:01 pm

Cut and Fold

A family detention center playset

Art — January 3, 2017, 5:00 pm

Betty at Port Glasgow Town Hall Xmas Party

“Betty at Port Glasgow Town Hall Xmas Party,” a photograph by Mark Neville, from the monograph Mark Neville: Fancy Pictures, which was published last month by Steidl. Image © Mark Neville. Courtesy Steidl

Annotation — December 23, 2016, 12:43 pm

The Trumptini

Drinking in Trump’s America

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October 2019

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Article
Good Bad Bad Good·

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About fifteen years ago, my roommate and I developed a classification system for TV and movies. Each title was slotted into one of four categories: Good-Good; Bad-Good; Good-Bad; Bad-Bad. The first qualifier was qualitative, while the second represented a high-low binary, the title’s aspiration toward capital-A Art or lack thereof.

Some taxonomies were inarguable. The O.C., a Fox series about California rich kids and their beautiful swimming pools, was delightfully Good-Bad. Paul Haggis’s heavy-handed morality play, Crash, which won the Oscar for Best Picture, was gallingly Bad-Good. The films of Francois Truffaut, Good-Good; the CBS sitcom Two and a Half Men, Bad-Bad.

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Life after Life·

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For time ylost, this know ye,
By no way may recovered be.
—Chaucer

I spent thirty-eight years in prison and have been a free man for just under two. After killing a man named Thomas Allen Fellowes in a drunken, drugged-up fistfight in 1980, when I was nineteen years old, I was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. Former California governor Jerry Brown commuted my sentence and I was released in 2017, five days before Christmas. The law in California, like in most states, grants the governor the right to alter sentences. After many years of advocating for the reformation of the prison system into one that encourages rehabilitation, I had my life restored to me.

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Constitution in Crisis·

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America’s Constitution was once celebrated as a radical and successful blueprint for democratic governance, a model for fledgling republics across the world. But decades of political gridlock, electoral corruption, and dysfunction in our system of government have forced scholars, activists, and citizens to question the document’s ability to address the thorniest issues of modern ­political life.

Does the path out of our current era of stalemate, minority rule, and executive abuse require amending the Constitution? Do we need a new constitutional convention to rewrite the document and update it for the twenty-­first century? Should we abolish it entirely?

This spring, Harper’s Magazine invited five lawmakers and scholars to New York University’s law school to consider the constitutional crisis of the twenty-­first century. The event was moderated by Rosa Brooks, a law professor at Georgetown and the author of How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything: Tales from the Pentagon.

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Power of Attorney·

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In a Walmart parking lot in Portsmouth, Virginia, in 2015, a white police officer named Stephen Rankin shot and killed an unarmed, eighteen-­year-­old black man named William Chapman. “This is my second one,” he told a bystander seconds after firing the fatal shots, seemingly in reference to an incident four years earlier, when he had shot and killed another unarmed man, an immigrant from Kazakhstan. Rankin, a Navy veteran, had been arresting Chapman for shoplifting when, he claimed, Chapman charged him in a manner so threatening that he feared for his life, leaving him no option but to shoot to kill—­the standard and almost invariably successful defense for officers when called to account for shooting civilians. Rankin had faced no charges for his earlier killing, but this time, something unexpected happened: Rankin was indicted on a charge of first-­degree murder by Portsmouth’s newly elected chief prosecutor, thirty-­one-year-­old Stephanie Morales. Furthermore, she announced that she would try the case herself, the first time she had ever prosecuted a homicide. “No one could remember us having an actual prosecution for the killing of an unarmed person by the police,” Morales told me. “I got a lot of feedback, a lot of people saying, ‘You shouldn’t try this case. If you don’t win, it may affect your reelection. Let someone else do it.’ ”

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Secrets and Lies·

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In 1973, when Barry Singer was a fifteen-year-old student at New York’s Yeshiva University High School for Boys, the vice principal, Rabbi George Finkelstein, stopped him in a stairwell. Claiming he wanted to check his tzitzit—the strings attached to Singer’s prayer shawl—Finkelstein, Singer says, pushed the boy over the third-floor banister, in full view of his classmates, and reached down his pants. “If he’s not wearing tzitzit,” Finkelstein told the surrounding children, “he’s going over the stairs!”

“He played it as a joke, but I was completely at his mercy,” Singer recalled. For the rest of his time at Yeshiva, Singer would often wear his tzitzit on the outside of his shirt—though this was regarded as rebellious—for fear that Finkelstein might find an excuse to assault him again.

Cost of renting a giant panda from the Chinese government, per day:

$1,500

A recent earthquake in Chile was found to have shifted the city of Concepción ten feet to the west, shortened Earth’s days by 1.26 microseconds, and shifted the planet’s axis by nearly three inches.

A federal judge authored a 69-page ruling preventing New York City from enforcing zoning laws pertaining to adult bookstores and strip clubs.

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“Nowadays, most states let just about anybody who wants a concealed-handgun permit have one; in seventeen states, you don’t even have to be a resident. Nobody knows exactly how many Americans carry guns, because not all states release their numbers, and even if they did, not all permit holders carry all the time. But it’s safe to assume that as many as 6 million Americans are walking around with firearms under their clothes.”

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