Watching the mass impulse toward democracy in Iran over the past week has been alternately inspiring and terrifying. The power and clumsiness of the state never fails to scare me and the courage and intensity of the public in the street continues to inspire. Something is different about political participation in these early years of Read More
The New York Times reported this morning that a book about oil in the Middle East published in 2006 by John Wiley & Sons was partially plagiarized from a Wikipedia article.
The name of the book’s author? George Orwel.
Reached by phone this morning at his home in Brooklyn, Mr. Read More
The Frenchman was urgent. Still youngish, maybe 45, he had moved to New York City to catch his breath after a life spent in the intellectual atmosphere, antic but finally stultifying, of home. He did not use George Orwell’s phrase about “smelly little orthodoxies,” but that is clearly what he believed he had fled: a Read More
Tomorrow morning Tom Suozzi addresses a New York Building Congress forum at the Grand Hyatt; and the NYC Campaign Finance Board meets at 40 Rector Street.
Then at noon, students and professors at Columbia University begin a 24 hour reading of George Orwell’s 1984 as a protest to NSA wiretapping.
Grassroots activists supporting Hillary Clinton Read More
Although he was born and bred in New York and had lived there all his life, “I have never much liked the place,” Dwight Macdonald told a friend in 1960. It was a typical phrase from a man who was one of the great New York journalists of the 20th century, as well as one Read More
Humankind must eat, agreed; and as with all the other habits of our metabolism-addicted nature, words can be used to describe the pleasures and pains of eating, its elegancies of style, the distinctions thereof, even the grunts and snorts of greedy feeding. And writers by their nature must write, some of them choosing culinary expertise Read More
Here are three possible stocking-stuffers and, who knows, mind-stuffers as well-books for the season, and for the months to come.
First is Martin Amis’ Koba the Dread . Koba was a nickname of Iosif Dzhugashvili, whose better-known nickname was Stalin, and whose sinisterly macho face smiles from the dust jacket of Mr. Amis’ book. Martin Read More
It’s a little disconcerting, isn’t it, that two expatriate
Brits-Andrew Sullivan and Christopher Hitchens-have turned out to be the most
forceful, eloquent and influential voices in the American debate over the Sept.
11 attacks and their meaning.
Yes, there have been other articulate voices on all sides of the
question, but after four months Read More
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft , by Stephen King. Scribner, 288 pages, $25.
The title of this genial, informal book is misleading. On Writing is most compelling as a kind of deliberately fragmented partial autobiography–those parts constitute much of the book and will fascinate any reader. The stuff on writing, which the author Read More
Robert Bierman’s A Merry War , based on George Orwell’s 1936 novel Keep the Aspidistra Flying , turns out to be a labor of love that fails to capture the paradoxes and peculiarities of Orwell’s uncannily prophetic vision. Even so, Mr. Bierman and screenwriter Alan Plater are to be commended for making the effort at Read More