Politics

Fact-Checking the Sunday Shows

Fact-Checking the Sunday Shows

By Lauren Carroll and Aaron SharockmanSuper Sunday brought talk about the spread of terrorists abroad and the spread of measles back home.PunditFact fact-checked a pair of claims.On Fox News Sunday, retired Army Gen. Jack Keane discussed the situa...

The spread of both measles and al-Qaeda has the talking heads up in arms. PunditFact checks the facts.

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Political Correctness Makes Us Funnier

Political Correctness Makes Us Funnier

Even though I’m a writer of uncommon bravery and penetrating social insight, whose words have shifted the entire worldviews of literally tens of people, if not fewer, I make my living mainly as a comedy writer. I try very hard to make funny things...

Yes, the reactionary left can be annoying and silly. But that shouldn’t obscure the fact that words have consequences.

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The Horror of Bipartisan Consensus

The Horror of Bipartisan Consensus

The two scariest words in Washington are “bipartisan consensus” – it’s like when my doctor and my lawyer agree with my wife that I need help.What if President Obama and the Republicans controlling Congress really did cooperate?Tax the top 10 perce...

Imagine an America where the White House and Congress got along — and all the terrible things they would do to us.

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Fact-Checking the Sunday Shows

Fact-Checking the Sunday Shows

By Lauren Carroll and Aaron SharockmanSuper Sunday brought talk about the spread of terrorists abroad and the spread of measles back home.PunditFact fact-checked a pair of claims.On Fox News Sunday, retired Army Gen. Jack Keane discussed the situa...

The spread of both measles and al-Qaeda has the talking heads up in arms. PunditFact checks the facts.

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American Soldiers on 'American Sniper'

American Soldiers on 'American Sniper'

Countrymen and countrywomen, we have got to be smarter about this whole American Sniper thing.Without question, the film has tapped into that ever-elusive cultural zeitgeist, and think pieces are hardly the only metric proving it. The film has a s...

Contrary to what the Internet would have you believe there are ways of thinking about Chris Kyle other than war criminal or hero.

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Peter King’s Race For Second Place

Peter King’s Race For Second Place

Most presidential candidates have reasons and rationales about why they are running. They have a vision, hear a calling, tell stories of making the country stronger and safer for their children and their grandchildren.Peter King, the gruff congres...

The gruff Republican from Long Island has a simple plan for running for president: Be the last man standing.

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Entertainment

The Week in Viral Videos

The Week in Viral Videos

5. Key & Peele Get Real with Football NamesComedic duo Key & Peele returned with a Super Bowl special before Sunday’s big game. Naturally, they revived the East West Bowl skit that made them a YouTube smash. To shake things up this time, t...

From Key & Peele’s latest football lineup to Marshawn Lynch’s desire to not get fined, watch our countdown of this week’s buzziest videos.

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The First Heroism of Bruce Jenner

The First Heroism of Bruce Jenner

After months of tittering, gossip-y, speculation, People magazine is reporting that former Olympic decathlete and reality TV star Bruce Jenner has decided to come out as transgender and “will soon be living life as female.”Their source added that ...

Back in the 1970s, he was on the cover of every magazine and a sports icon—the greatest athlete in the world. Now his new journey is another kind of heroism.

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Bobbi Kristina’s Troubled Life

Bobbi Kristina’s Troubled Life

Bobbi Kristina Brown, the daughter of Whitney Houston and Bobbi Brown, was found unconscious in a bathtub Saturday morning and taken to an Atlanta-area hospital. According to TMZ, she is revived and breathing again.That Brown’s breathing has been ...

Whitney Houston’s daughter is breathing again after being found unconscious in a bathtub Saturday. A look back at the self-destructive behavior that might have led to the tragedy.

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Anthony Mackie On Why Everyone's A Thug

Anthony Mackie On Why Everyone's A Thug

Anthony Mackie has been talking a lot lately. About dreadlocks. About sandwiches. About racism and wives and lemonade and a lot of things that have gotten him into some trouble with a lot of his fans.The backlash seemed to get under his skin a bit...

Anthony Mackie says that these days, anybody can be a ‘thug’ and have an opinion. Maybe he should think about that before he espouses his hopelessly old-school values.

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The First Heroism of Bruce Jenner

The First Heroism of Bruce Jenner

After months of tittering, gossip-y, speculation, People magazine is reporting that former Olympic decathlete and reality TV star Bruce Jenner has decided to come out as transgender and “will soon be living life as female.”Their source added that ...

Back in the 1970s, he was on the cover of every magazine and a sports icon—the greatest athlete in the world. Now his new journey is another kind of heroism.

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Keith Jarrett's Immortal ‘Concert’ Is 40

Keith Jarrett's Immortal ‘Concert’ Is 40

I still remember my first encounter with Keith Jarrett’s album The Köln Concert, recorded 40 years ago this week.I was a teenager browsing the jazz bins at a record store on El Camino Real in Palo Alto late one evening, when a store clerk put the ...

How did a solo piano album shake up the music world during the age of disco, fusion and rock? And what makes it sound as fresh today as it did 40 years ago?

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Eternal Hangtime With the ‘Diner’ Boys

Eternal Hangtime With the ‘Diner’ Boys

My father was born and raised in New York City. He idolized, among others, Sid Caesar, Walt Kelly, and Adlai Stevenson. As his son, I campaigned for Mondale/Ferraro when I was in the 8th grade, drew anti-Reagan political cartoons for my social stu...

Not a lot happens in Barry Levinson’s 1982 debut film about a gang of friends keeping time and adulthood at bay, but James Wolcott points out, action is not this exquisite movie’s po...

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Naughty Nerds: College Grads Do Porn

Naughty Nerds: College Grads Do Porn

Yes, some educated women really do enjoy sex work. Duke University student Belle Knox and former Wall Street intern Veronica Vain have been making headlines for choosing to do porn. These women defy their socially defined roles as intelligent, pro...

Lena Dunham’s ‘Girls’ aired a scene of ass eating on cable television. Who says porn stars can’t be intelligent women?

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Keith Jarrett's Immortal ‘Concert’ Is 40

Keith Jarrett's Immortal ‘Concert’ Is 40

I still remember my first encounter with Keith Jarrett’s album The Köln Concert, recorded 40 years ago this week.I was a teenager browsing the jazz bins at a record store on El Camino Real in Palo Alto late one evening, when a store clerk put the ...

How did a solo piano album shake up the music world during the age of disco, fusion and rock? And what makes it sound as fresh today as it did 40 years ago?

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World News

Meet the Pope’s ‘Soul on the Street’

Meet the Pope’s ‘Soul on the Street’

VATICAN CITY—If you ask any of the homeless men and women who seek food and shelter around St. Peter’s basilica in Rome who Don Corrado is, they will tell you he is the pope’s soul on the street—the man who carries out the charitable wishes of the...

By bringing a measure of dignity and cleanliness to Rome’s poor, Don Corrado looks has transformed the Church’s charitable giving.

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The Week in Photos

The Week in Photos

From Holocaust survivors to Serena Williams, the most compelling images from the past seven days.

From Holocaust survivors to Serena Williams, the most compelling images from the past seven days.

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Iran Makes ISIS Impossible to Beat

Iran Makes ISIS Impossible to Beat

It was August 2007, and General David Petraeus, the top commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, was angry.  In his weekly report to then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Petraeus wrote:  “I am considering telling the President that I believe Iran is, in ...

Washington needs to quit pretending it can work with Iran to defeat the Islamic State. Tehran’s real objective is to defeat Washington.

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ISIS Beheads Japanese Hostage

ISIS Beheads Japanese Hostage

TOKYO—The so-called Islamic State has released a video showing a black-clad executioner and what is believed to be the decapitated body of Japanese journalist Kenji Goto. The latest atrocity at the hands of the group known widely as ISIS or ISIL c...

Negotiations to free Goto failed. The fate of a captured Jordanian pilot remains a mystery.

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The Week in Photos

The Week in Photos

From Holocaust survivors to Serena Williams, the most compelling images from the past seven days.

From Holocaust survivors to Serena Williams, the most compelling images from the past seven days.

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British Army Joins the Twitter Wars

British Army Joins the Twitter Wars

LONDON—The British Army is recruiting a brigade of keyboard warriors ready to battle the might of both the Russian army and the insurgent forces who are killing in the name of the Islamic State.Infuriated by the Kremlin’s “little green men” foment...

Her Majesty's military is taking on infowar and psyops with the 77th Brigade.

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The Five Most Sexist Super Bowl Ads Ever

The Five Most Sexist Super Bowl Ads Ever

Super Bowl commercials generally serve as an irritating reminder to Americans feminists that somewhere on the to-do list below ensuring girls in Third World countries can safely get an education, we need to get corporations to stop depicting women...

Sexism, misogyny, burgers and boobs. These Super Bowl ads are some of the worst in history.

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U.S. Takes Out ISIS Chemical Weaponeer

U.S. Takes Out ISIS Chemical Weaponeer

A chemical weapons expert and longtime jihadist who joined ISIS was killed last week in a targeted U.S. strike near Mosul, U.S. Central Command announced Friday, dealing a significant blow to what several intelligence sources described as a danger...

Before he was killed, Saddam-era WMD specialist Abu Malik was assembling a stockpile of specialized gear. Now U.S. spies want to know: for what?

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British Army Joins the Twitter Wars

British Army Joins the Twitter Wars

LONDON—The British Army is recruiting a brigade of keyboard warriors ready to battle the might of both the Russian army and the insurgent forces who are killing in the name of the Islamic State.Infuriated by the Kremlin’s “little green men” foment...

Her Majesty's military is taking on infowar and psyops with the 77th Brigade.

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U.S. News

NFL Is Making Domestic Violence Worse

NFL Is Making Domestic Violence Worse

Super Bowl XLIX caps a year when the NFL became a national symbol for domestic violence. This may be the end of the NFL season, but one camera in an elevator opened a national conversation that will at last put the onus squarely on the shoulders o...

The NFL is better at fueling an angry mob for minor transgressions—like pot use—than fixing its huge problems or highlighting players’ journeys out of tough experiences. That problem...

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U.S. Workers’ New Robot Overlords

U.S. Workers’ New Robot Overlords

Over the last two hundred years, technological innovation has been the driving force behind a massive improvement in global living standards, even as human population has grown from less than a billion to more than seven billion people.Despite the...

In the run-up to the 2016 election, no leading candidates are talking about one of the most important issues facing the country: the risk of large-scale technological unemployment.

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Jesus Christ Wasn’t Down With Marriage

Jesus Christ Wasn’t Down With Marriage

This week the Mormon Church took a half-hearted shuffle toward LGBT equality by pledging to support anti-discrimination laws for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people. In a rare press conference in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, LDS leaders...

Laws aimed at reinforcing ‘traditional’ Christian marriage get Christ’s and early Christians’ views on matrimony exactly backward.

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NFL Is Making Domestic Violence Worse

NFL Is Making Domestic Violence Worse

Super Bowl XLIX caps a year when the NFL became a national symbol for domestic violence. This may be the end of the NFL season, but one camera in an elevator opened a national conversation that will at last put the onus squarely on the shoulders o...

The NFL is better at fueling an angry mob for minor transgressions—like pot use—than fixing its huge problems or highlighting players’ journeys out of tough experiences. That problem...

Keep Reading

The First Heroism of Bruce Jenner

The First Heroism of Bruce Jenner

After months of tittering, gossip-y, speculation, People magazine is reporting that former Olympic decathlete and reality TV star Bruce Jenner has decided to come out as transgender and “will soon be living life as female.”Their source added that ...

Back in the 1970s, he was on the cover of every magazine and a sports icon—the greatest athlete in the world. Now his new journey is another kind of heroism.

Keep Reading

Tolstoy’s Love Letter to Lincoln

Tolstoy’s Love Letter to Lincoln

Visiting Leo Tolstoi in Yasnaya with the intention of getting him to write an article on Lincoln, I unfortunately found him not well enough to yield to my request. However, he was willing to give me his opinion of the great American statesman, and...

Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy once regaled a Muslim chieftain in the Caucasus about the greatness of Abraham Lincoln.

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Tech + Health

U.S. Workers’ New Robot Overlords

U.S. Workers’ New Robot Overlords

Over the last two hundred years, technological innovation has been the driving force behind a massive improvement in global living standards, even as human population has grown from less than a billion to more than seven billion people.Despite the...

In the run-up to the 2016 election, no leading candidates are talking about one of the most important issues facing the country: the risk of large-scale technological unemployment.

Keep Reading

Plastic Surgery Is Weirder Than Ever

Plastic Surgery Is Weirder Than Ever

Ever wanted some help ditching that double chin? A new procedure might just have the answer. An application for a fat busting face injection is currently being processed in the US, which could reinvent the world of quick, workout free weight loss....

More Americans than ever are tweaking their bodies and faces, but they’re doing it without knives.

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Football Is Ruining Kids’ Brains

Football Is Ruining Kids’ Brains

Picture a football player. If you’re anything like me, you’re imaging a 20-something man well over six feet tall who could outrun a gazelle and bench press his body weigh several times over.But this simply isn’t true—70 percent of all football pla...

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: don’t let your kids play tackle football.

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Disney’s Sick History With Measles

Disney’s Sick History With Measles

Among the 195 children exposed to measles at an Arizona clinic was Eli Jacks, who is only 10 months old and therefore too young to be vaccinated.Also exposed was his 3-year-old sister, Maggie Jacks. She belongs to a group of children who cannot be...

Vaccinations all but ended measles by 1982, when new cases hit Disneyland and elsewhere. Now health officials believe one infected person sparked a new outbreak at the theme park.

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Plastic Surgery Is Weirder Than Ever

Plastic Surgery Is Weirder Than Ever

Ever wanted some help ditching that double chin? A new procedure might just have the answer. An application for a fat busting face injection is currently being processed in the US, which could reinvent the world of quick, workout free weight loss....

More Americans than ever are tweaking their bodies and faces, but they’re doing it without knives.

Keep Reading

ISIS and Boko Haram’s Online Alliance

ISIS and Boko Haram’s Online Alliance

Boko Haram, which has terrorized Nigeria in its quest to create an Islamic caliphate, appears to mirroring the Islamic State’s online media campaign and potentially laying the groundwork for future coordination between the groups, U.S. government ...

U.S. intelligence sees the bloodthirsty African group ‘take a page from the Islamic State’s social-media playbook.’ But Internet cooperation may be just the start.

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Parents Sue Over ‘Wrongful Abortion’

Parents Sue Over ‘Wrongful Abortion’

After three miscarriages, Colleen Abbott*, a 37-year-old New Englander, finally had what doctors told her was a viable pregnancy. Parents to a son already, Colleen and her husband, John*, hoped for a girl. When two sonograms confirmed the baby’s g...

A test told a couple their child might be intersex and have a genetic disorder. The test was wrong.

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Goop’s Latest Crazy: Steam Your Vagina

Goop’s Latest Crazy: Steam Your Vagina

Women of America, please do not steam your vaginas.I imagine that for most of you, this advice seems startlingly unnecessary. Like being told not to parboil your feet or have your elbows dry cleaned, presumably it would not occur to most of you to...

Oh Gwyneth. When will you stop passing on your absurdity in the form of healthy, scientific advice?

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ISIS and Boko Haram’s Online Alliance

ISIS and Boko Haram’s Online Alliance

Boko Haram, which has terrorized Nigeria in its quest to create an Islamic caliphate, appears to mirroring the Islamic State’s online media campaign and potentially laying the groundwork for future coordination between the groups, U.S. government ...

U.S. intelligence sees the bloodthirsty African group ‘take a page from the Islamic State’s social-media playbook.’ But Internet cooperation may be just the start.

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BeastStyle

Sri Lanka’s Last Hunter-Gatherers

Sri Lanka’s Last Hunter-Gatherers

Over two thousand years ago, a lion made love to a beautiful woman in India, and their son, Sinhabahu, was born with lion paws for hands and feet. Sinhabahu in turn had a son called Vijaya, who became the first, legendary king of Sri Lanka (the pe...

A trip into the jungle with members of one of Sri Lanka’s oldest tribes reveals a way of life both richly entwined with nature, yet ever more precarious.

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The School That Killed the Word ‘Mr.’

The School That Killed the Word ‘Mr.’

Of all the politically charged words we use to address each other in day-to-day communication, “Mr.” and “Ms.” might seem relatively inoffensive.But “Mr.” and “Ms.” entered the campus gender wars this week, with the announcement that administrator...

In the latest campus gender war, the Graduate Center of the City University of New York has decreed staff will no longer use the salutations ‘Mr.’ and ‘Ms.’ in exchanges with students.

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Is Newsweek’s ‘Red Heels’ Cover Sexist?

Is Newsweek’s ‘Red Heels’ Cover Sexist?

If the goal of any magazine is to spike newsstand sales by cutting through the clutter and provoking the chattering classes, then Newsweek has scored big-time with the cover of its latest issue.Astride the headline, “What Silicon Valley Thinks of ...

It was supposed to illustrate a story about sexism in Silicon Valley, but the magazine’s cover, showing a cursor lifting up a skirt, has come under fire for being offensive itself.

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Is This The End Of ‘Downton Abbey’?

Is This The End Of ‘Downton Abbey’?

Mrs. Patmore, bake, bake, bake. Bake as fast as you can. Daisy, don’t dawdle. Thomas, you’ll have to find another keyhole to listen at. Lady Mary, it’s time to take your freewheeling “Hear my vagina roar” sex positivity elsewhere. And Edith. Well,...

A British tabloid reports the axe is about to fall on the hit period drama, with its creators and stars ready to move on. So, how should it end?

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The School That Killed the Word ‘Mr.’

The School That Killed the Word ‘Mr.’

Of all the politically charged words we use to address each other in day-to-day communication, “Mr.” and “Ms.” might seem relatively inoffensive.But “Mr.” and “Ms.” entered the campus gender wars this week, with the announcement that administrator...

In the latest campus gender war, the Graduate Center of the City University of New York has decreed staff will no longer use the salutations ‘Mr.’ and ‘Ms.’ in exchanges with students.

Keep Reading

Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

The memoir of divorce is something of a cliché: a writer’s post-trauma, woe-is-me catharsis; the gory details from an unhappy marriage dumped on the page. It is written specifically for the divorced or lovelorn, who internalize the author’s emotio...

Alexandra Fuller has written a memoir about her tangled family history, falling in love, and the breakdown of her marriage.

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Mrs. Clooney vs. Genocide Deniers

Mrs. Clooney vs. Genocide Deniers

LONDON — This time Amal Clooney is taking on one of the greatest war crimes of the 20th century.The star human-rights lawyer is appearing at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France, this week in the name of the victims of the Arme...

Can the celebrity human-rights lawyer buck the tide and get recognition of the slaughter of 1.5 million Armenians?

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Paris’s Craziest Couture Shows

Paris’s Craziest Couture Shows

If you thought the couture shows in the French capital showed the most breathtaking fashion, you’d be right, but sometimes that means ‘breathtakingly nutty.’

If you thought the couture shows in the French capital showed the most breathtaking fashion, you’d be right, but sometimes that means ‘breathtakingly nutty.’

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Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

The memoir of divorce is something of a cliché: a writer’s post-trauma, woe-is-me catharsis; the gory details from an unhappy marriage dumped on the page. It is written specifically for the divorced or lovelorn, who internalize the author’s emotio...

Alexandra Fuller has written a memoir about her tangled family history, falling in love, and the breakdown of her marriage.

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Women in the World

Is Newsweek’s ‘Red Heels’ Cover Sexist?

Is Newsweek’s ‘Red Heels’ Cover Sexist?

If the goal of any magazine is to spike newsstand sales by cutting through the clutter and provoking the chattering classes, then Newsweek has scored big-time with the cover of its latest issue.Astride the headline, “What Silicon Valley Thinks of Women”—a 5,000-word article on the creepy, sexist culture of the tech industry—is the cartoon of a faceless female in spiky red heels, having her dress lifted up by a cursor arrow.The image has prompted widespread outrag...

It was supposed to illustrate a story about sexism in Silicon Valley, but the magazine’s cover, showing a cursor lifting up a skirt, has come under fire for being offensive itself.

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Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

The memoir of divorce is something of a cliché: a writer’s post-trauma, woe-is-me catharsis; the gory details from an unhappy marriage dumped on the page. It is written specifically for the divorced or lovelorn, who internalize the author’s emotio...

Alexandra Fuller has written a memoir about her tangled family history, falling in love, and the breakdown of her marriage.

Keep Reading

Mrs. Clooney vs. Genocide Deniers

Mrs. Clooney vs. Genocide Deniers

LONDON — This time Amal Clooney is taking on one of the greatest war crimes of the 20th century.The star human-rights lawyer is appearing at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France, this week in the name of the victims of the Arme...

Can the celebrity human-rights lawyer buck the tide and get recognition of the slaughter of 1.5 million Armenians?

Keep Reading

Parents Sue Over ‘Wrongful Abortion’

Parents Sue Over ‘Wrongful Abortion’

After three miscarriages, Colleen Abbott*, a 37-year-old New Englander, finally had what doctors told her was a viable pregnancy. Parents to a son already, Colleen and her husband, John*, hoped for a girl. When two sonograms confirmed the baby’s g...

A test told a couple their child might be intersex and have a genetic disorder. The test was wrong.

Keep Reading

Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

The memoir of divorce is something of a cliché: a writer’s post-trauma, woe-is-me catharsis; the gory details from an unhappy marriage dumped on the page. It is written specifically for the divorced or lovelorn, who internalize the author’s emotio...

Alexandra Fuller has written a memoir about her tangled family history, falling in love, and the breakdown of her marriage.

Keep Reading

Accused Campus Rapist In Jail For Once

Accused Campus Rapist In Jail For Once

If there is such a thing as an ideal way for onlookers to respond to campus sexual assault, the arrest and indictment of 19-year-old Brock Allen Turner would be it.Turner, a former Stanford freshman and star swimmer, has been charged by Santa Clar...

When passersby caught a star swimmer allegedly raping an unconscious woman outside of a frat, they didn’t call the university. They jumped on him. They called police. Now he’ll face ...

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The Epic All-Female ‘Ghostbusters’ Cast

The Epic All-Female ‘Ghostbusters’ Cast

Who you gonna call? According to Tuesday’s big news, Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones, the four women who very likely going to star in the all-female reboot of Ghostbusters.Bridesmaids director Paul Feig is set to di...

Director Paul Feig teased the cast of his ‘Ghostbusters’ spin-off on Twitter. Looks like Wiig, McCarthy, McKinnon, and Jones are about to make your new favorite movie.

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Lena Dunham on the ‘Thought Police’

Lena Dunham on the ‘Thought Police’

For female urbanites—and New Yorkers in particular—Eloise represented their wildest fantasy come to life: a free-spirited, wildly independent young girl who lives in the penthouse of the Plaza Hotel and embarks on an endless array of First World a...

The creator and star of HBO’s Girls sat down at Sundance to discuss her Eloise documentary, Hannah’s Iowa mess, and her legion of haters.

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Accused Campus Rapist In Jail For Once

Accused Campus Rapist In Jail For Once

If there is such a thing as an ideal way for onlookers to respond to campus sexual assault, the arrest and indictment of 19-year-old Brock Allen Turner would be it.Turner, a former Stanford freshman and star swimmer, has been charged by Santa Clar...

When passersby caught a star swimmer allegedly raping an unconscious woman outside of a frat, they didn’t call the university. They jumped on him. They called police. Now he’ll face ...

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Books

Edith Wharton Takes Down High Society

Edith Wharton Takes Down High Society

About this series:This monthly series chronicles the history of the American century as seen through the eyes of its novelists. The goal is to create a literary anatomy of the last century—or, to be precise, from 1900 to 2015. Each column a single...

Like a slow-motion car pile-up that you can’t stop watching, Wharton’s ‘House of Mirth’ describes a socialite’s decline and fall in pitiless, addictive detail.

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  • Beast Fiction: Lea Carpenter’s ‘Swan’

    Beast Fiction: Lea Carpenter’s ‘Swan’

    It was a coping mechanism, the letters. In the evenings, after everything was settled and when she was alone, she would take her old papers, the ones too chic to bear a monogram. She would handwrite them, in blue pen. Dreamt up during the day, per...

    In the latest installment in our series of original fiction, previous contributor Lea Carpenter delivers a story that’s part fairy tale, part dream, part nightmare.

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How to Write A Real Person Into Fiction

How to Write A Real Person Into Fiction

Right at the center of my latest novel is the character of Mr. Mac, based on the late, great architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Mackintosh is as well known to the  British as Frank Lloyd Wright is to Americans, but although everyone  I mentioned...

In her latest novel, ‘Mr. Mac and Me,’ Esther Freud introduced architect and artist Charles Rennie Mackintosh into her story. Then things got a little strange.

Keep Reading

Tolstoy’s Love Letter to Lincoln

Tolstoy’s Love Letter to Lincoln

Visiting Leo Tolstoi in Yasnaya with the intention of getting him to write an article on Lincoln, I unfortunately found him not well enough to yield to my request. However, he was willing to give me his opinion of the great American statesman, and...

Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy once regaled a Muslim chieftain in the Caucasus about the greatness of Abraham Lincoln.

Keep Reading

Eternal Hangtime With the ‘Diner’ Boys

Eternal Hangtime With the ‘Diner’ Boys

My father was born and raised in New York City. He idolized, among others, Sid Caesar, Walt Kelly, and Adlai Stevenson. As his son, I campaigned for Mondale/Ferraro when I was in the 8th grade, drew anti-Reagan political cartoons for my social stu...

Not a lot happens in Barry Levinson’s 1982 debut film about a gang of friends keeping time and adulthood at bay, but James Wolcott points out, action is not this exquisite movie’s po...

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How to Write A Real Person Into Fiction

How to Write A Real Person Into Fiction

Right at the center of my latest novel is the character of Mr. Mac, based on the late, great architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Mackintosh is as well known to the  British as Frank Lloyd Wright is to Americans, but although everyone  I mentioned...

In her latest novel, ‘Mr. Mac and Me,’ Esther Freud introduced architect and artist Charles Rennie Mackintosh into her story. Then things got a little strange.

Keep Reading

Zillow’s Secret Real Estate Hacks

Zillow’s Secret Real Estate Hacks

Should you describe your house as unique? (No.) Redo that kitchen to increase your home’s value? (No.) Follow the gays? (Yes.)Just in time for spring and summer, when the buying and selling of homes heats up across the United States, CEO Spencer R...

Remodeling the bathroom, not the kitchen, gives you the most bang for your buck. Adjustable-rate mortgages aren’t evil. Buy on a street called Lake. And more from the real estate gurus.

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Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

Surviving Wartorn Africa—And Divorce

The memoir of divorce is something of a cliché: a writer’s post-trauma, woe-is-me catharsis; the gory details from an unhappy marriage dumped on the page. It is written specifically for the divorced or lovelorn, who internalize the author’s emotio...

Alexandra Fuller has written a memoir about her tangled family history, falling in love, and the breakdown of her marriage.

Keep Reading

Did Obama Forget the BP Oil Spill?

Did Obama Forget the BP Oil Spill?

After a brief flurry of positive news for environmentalists out of the Obama White House—from a deal with China on reducing greenhouse-gas emissions to a plan to restrict oil drilling in the Alaska wilderness—a news report this week felt like some...

The administration swore it would profit from the mistakes of the 2010 Gulf oil spill. The decision to allow drilling in the Atlantic makes you wonder if it learned anything at all.

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Zillow’s Secret Real Estate Hacks

Zillow’s Secret Real Estate Hacks

Should you describe your house as unique? (No.) Redo that kitchen to increase your home’s value? (No.) Follow the gays? (Yes.)Just in time for spring and summer, when the buying and selling of homes heats up across the United States, CEO Spencer R...

Remodeling the bathroom, not the kitchen, gives you the most bang for your buck. Adjustable-rate mortgages aren’t evil. Buy on a street called Lake. And more from the real estate gurus.

Keep Reading