Welcome to the Curiosity Economy

Jul 27, 2020

In 1954, when television sets were just becoming widespread in American homes, Alfred Hitchcock made “Rear Window.” The film portrays L. B. “Jeff” Jeffries, a magazine photographer played by James Stewart, stuck at home in a wheelchair with a broken leg, whose only entertainment is gazing...

Susan Sontag: Overcoming Representation
Jun 13, 2020

Susan Sontag: Overcoming Representation

The Parisian Becoming of Simone de Beauvoir
May 16, 2020

The Parisian Becoming of Simone de Beauvoir

Max Weber’s Three Qualities for the Modern Politician
May 08, 2020

Max Weber’s Three Qualities for the Modern Politician

The Truth Behind “The Plot Against America”

The Truth Behind “The Plot Against America”

Apr 30, 2020

Phillip Roth’s 2004 novel, “The Plot Against America,” has been made into a six-part TV series and shown recently on HBO in the United States and Great Britain. David Simon wrote the script for the television version and directed the production. Simon’s earlier credits include “The...

Anne Frank’s Amsterdam: Remembering Our Privilege in Times of Pandemic

Anne Frank’s Amsterdam: Remembering Our Privilege in Times of Pandemic

Apr 03, 2020

As I reread Anne Frank’s diary — living just a 10-minute walk from her hiding place in Amsterdam and having first read it in an American middle school, only imagining Europe — I immediately recognize many things that were not familiar the first time around. In recounting her life before...

The Art of Social Distancing According to Hannah Arendt

The Art of Social Distancing According to Hannah Arendt

Mar 23, 2020

It seems that on the highest levels, everything is going wrong. In the past few years, populism and authoritarianism have reared their ugly heads. The economy has just reached historic lows, and we are only beginning to reap the effects of a ruined environment. Suicide rates are climbing, refugee...

Martha Nussbaum’s Magnificent Opus, a Critique

Martha Nussbaum’s Magnificent Opus, a Critique

Mar 13, 2020

The philosopher Martha Nussbaum has a prodigious output and, indeed, it takes a prodigious effort to keep up with it. No sooner had I completed reading the latest trio of her books than a new one was signaled,  many of the recent works being based on her delivery of prestigious guest lectures...

Talking African Literature With Chigozie Obioma

Talking African Literature With Chigozie Obioma

Mar 05, 2020

African literature has attracted immense international interest in recent years, and a number of “Afropolitan” icons and rising stars have won acclaim from critics and literary festivals. Yet most reading lists released by major newspapers and journals are still disproportionately...

Is Twitter Killing the Written Word?

Is Twitter Killing the Written Word?

Feb 14, 2020

If Donald Trump had anything in common with a poet, it would be Homer. Homer was a pre-literate poet from Ancient Greece, while Trump is a post-literate US president who prefers to be briefed orally, gets his news from television and boasts that he likes to read as little as possible. Homer refers...

Understanding Our Place in the Grander Whole

Understanding Our Place in the Grander Whole

Feb 12, 2020

In an interview with theoretical physicist Brian Greene, The Guardian’s science editor, Ian Sample, questioned the author of the recently published “Until the End of Time: Mind, Matter and Our Search for Meaning in an Evolving Universe” on the themes he develops in his book. The interview...

Does “Positive Thinking” Have a Place in Politics?

Does “Positive Thinking” Have a Place in Politics?

Feb 10, 2020

To make money in the world of self-help books, being realistic and balanced, and where failure is accepted as a good thing, will not work. It seems that the leaders of America and the United Kingdom have cottoned on to this. It is well documented that Donald Trump is a big fan of the...

Naomi Wolf Talks Homophobia, Feminism and “Outrages”

Naomi Wolf Talks Homophobia, Feminism and "Outrages"

Jan 08, 2020

The year 1990 witnessed several revolutionary changes, one of which was the release of “The Beauty Myth: How Images of Beauty Are Used Against Women,” written by Naomi Wolf. The “Beauty Myth” highlighted how male dominance is maintained by holding women to certain standards of beauty, and...

A Poet’s Meditations on Inspiration and Hope

A Poet’s Meditations on Inspiration and Hope

Dec 21, 2019

A poem arrives like a hand in the dark. Who knows where inspiration comes from, and where it goes. I submit that even artists don’t — at least not yours truly. After something of a dry patch, where I began to refer to myself as an “ex-writer,” I find that I'm writing poetry, again:...

Load More