Books

Has Olivia Manning’s ‘Fortunes of War’ Finally Found Its Moment?

Has Olivia Manning’s ‘Fortunes of War’ Finally Found Its Moment?

The Ukrainian war has made Manning’s writing more relevant now than at any time since it was written.

Robin Ashenden
Robin Ashenden
11 min read
Art and Culture
Roya Hakakian and How to Speak About What No One Wants to Hear

Roya Hakakian and How to Speak About What No One Wants to Hear

I. Roya Hakakian is an American writer from Iran who commands a distinctive ability to speak about large and horrific events in a chipper tone that appears to underplay the horrific quality and, by apparently underplaying, ends up subtly underlining. It is an artful tone. It is cagey, charming, disarming,

Paul Berman
Paul Berman
33 min read
Politics
Hofstadter’s Paranoid Style Revisited

Hofstadter’s Paranoid Style Revisited

Hofstadter argued that McCarthyism was simply the latest iteration of a longstanding American tradition.

Michael J. Totten
Michael J. Totten
9 min read
Politics
Get Ready for the Return of the Abortion Novel

Get Ready for the Return of the Abortion Novel

The abortion novels that proliferated in the late 1960s were filled with characters who are forced by carelessness and circumstance to make the most agonizing of personal choices.

Kevin Mims
Kevin Mims
26 min read
Art and Culture
The Western Reinvented. Again.

The Western Reinvented. Again.

It has been 30 years since a Western last won the Best Picture Oscar at the Academy Awards. That was in 1992 and the film was Unforgiven, directed by Clint Eastwood, who also starred in it alongside Morgan Freeman, Gene Hackman, and Richard Harris. On Sunday, Jane Campion’s The

Kevin Mims
Kevin Mims
8 min read
Arts and Culture
Heading Into the Atom Age—Pat Frank’s Perpetually Relevant Novels

Heading Into the Atom Age—Pat Frank’s Perpetually Relevant Novels

NOTE: The following essay contains spoilers. British journalist Ed West recently published an excellent essay entitled “Children of Men Is Really Happening,” in which he tied together the shrinking fertility rate wreaking demographic havoc across the globe and the Russian invasion of the Ukraine, which is also wreaking havoc across

Kevin Mims
Kevin Mims
11 min read
Art and Culture
Against De-Materialization: Tom Wolfe in the Age of NFTs

Against De-Materialization: Tom Wolfe in the Age of NFTs

You cannot lose, you cannot win: the present includes the past and the future. ~Marshall McLuhan I In the summer of 1970, TV-Ontario filmed Tom Wolfe in conversation with Marshall McLuhan on the lawn of McLuhan’s home in Toronto’s Wychwood Park. Towards the end of their amicable chat,

Julia Friedman and David Hawkes
Julia Friedman and David Hawkes
14 min read
Art and Culture
Authentic Immediacy—A Tribute to the Political Fiction of Frederick Forsyth

Authentic Immediacy—A Tribute to the Political Fiction of Frederick Forsyth

When the Berlin Wall fell and the USSR collapsed, one might have assumed that Cold War fiction would become irrelevant. That hasn’t turned out to be the case with Frederick Forsyth’s work. Consider, for instance, this passage from his 1979 novel, The Devil’s Alternative: The Union of

Kevin Mims
Kevin Mims
12 min read
Art and Culture