Society & Culture

  • The Unmet Mentor

    The Unmet Mentor

    Life changed forever for me and my family on June 19, 2015, when tragedy struck suddenly. In the aftermath, I turned to an old mentor. In the ashes of our loss and dismal emptiness, I opened A Grief Observed, by C.S. Lewis. The first line: “No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.”

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  • <em>Books in Brief</em>

    Books in Brief

    Theodore Roosevelt always considered himself a man of letters, and indeed he was one. He began reading widely and writing at an early age, and a day never seems to have passed when he did not read and write, even in circumstances fiercely dissuasive of both activities, including an exploratory trek into the wilds of the Brazilian jungle.

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  • The Anatomy of Color

    The Anatomy of Color

    History can be refracted through countless prisms—cultural, economic, environmental, ideological, moral, national, racial, religious—but one has been oddly unexplored, despite being not just obvious but ubiquitous.

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  • Anglo Magic

    Anglo Magic

    Field of Blood is one of the best new novels I have read in many a year, a superbly written book by a Russian scholar and analyst who is also a careful artist, a stylist, and a poet in prose and in form who has accomplished what few essayists and nonfiction authors ever succeed at: mastering, with apparent effortlessness, the craft of fiction.

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In Our Time

  • Darwinian Liberalism

    Darwinian Liberalism

    A brief article in The Spectator (May 19) by Fredrik Erixon speculates that President Emmanuel Macron of France, generally considered a liberal centrist énarque, seems to be reconsidering his position following the anniversary of his first year in office.

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  • Tom Wolfe, R.I.P.

    Tom Wolfe, R.I.P.

    When Tom Wolfe’s debut novel, The Bonfire of the Vanities, was published in November 1987, the book was greeted with effusive praise and became a best-seller, although some literati seemed offended by Wolfe’s highly descriptive prose, the hyperbole, exuberant punctuation, and occasional sound effects.

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  • Faith Whittlesey, R.I.P.

    Faith Whittlesey, R.I.P.

    The mice had a problem with Faith Whittlesey. These mice were not the four-legged kind; they were Chief of Staff Donald Regan’s functionaries in the Reagan White House, scurrying around and gnawing away at conservative policy efforts.

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  • The Siege of Sweden

    The Siege of Sweden

    In an era of political correctness, “safe spaces,” and “trigger warnings” for the constitutionally feeble, there are plenty of things we are not supposed to talk about. Increasingly in recent months, this seems to include crime and immigration in the Kingdom of Sweden.

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  • Those Oldies But Goodies

    Those Oldies But Goodies

    An Italian-American restaurant I count on features sound reasons for my presence there, and that of others. I like the tone in that environment. There is an aspect of 1950’s atmosphere—the place is quiet, the lighting subdued, and the manners polite.

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  • How the Crusades Were Won

    How the Crusades Were Won

    The Christian Crusades of the Middle Ages are today deployed for a wide range of political and rhetorical purposes—to make claims about the Church’s betrayal of Christ’s teaching, the evils of European imperialism, or the inextricable link between intolerant religion and ghastly violence.

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  • Neocons in the Dark

    Neocons in the Dark

    Republican politicians are all Trumpier-than-thou these days, if they know what’s good for them. The GOP wing of the “Resistance,” represented by Jeff Flake and Bob Corker, are retiring from the field, defeated.

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  • The Essential Sector

    The Essential Sector

    One of Donald Trump’s signature issues during the presidential campaign was his assertion that bad trade deals had cost millions of American manufacturing jobs, and his promise to do something to reverse that doleful trend.

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  • Trump’s Iranian Gamble

    Trump’s Iranian Gamble

    The conventional view among antiglobalist conservatives is that President Donald Trump’s nixing of the Iran nuclear deal, coupled with the much-heralded relocation of the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, is bad news.

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  • Families


    On July 18, 1969, Sen. Edward Kennedy infamously drove off a bridge on Chappaquiddick Island. He had left a late-night party with an aide named Mary Jo Kopechne supposedly to take her to the ferry to Martha’s Vineyard.

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  • The Unhelpful Uncle

    The Unhelpful Uncle

    I recently had a spirited discussion with the British historian James Holland, brother of Tom Holland, also a distinguished man of letters, about FDR, his oil embargo of Japan, and the root causes of World War II.

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