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December 19, 2014
Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
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Go West, Young Han
Weather Extremes Rise as Planet Gets Hotter and Colder






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George Orwell: Diaries

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Imagine All My Words

“The John Lennon Letters” collects and reproduces 285 postcards, telegrams, to-do lists and other writings from the former Beatle’s early childhood to Dec. 8, 1980, hours before he was killed.

Posted on Nov 14, 2012 READ MORE


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A Raid Without the Rush

Mark Bowden’s “The Finish” reveals something you might not have known about the plan to kill Osama bin Laden: The Obama administration had considered a third option for taking out the al-Qaida leader—a sniper drone still under development.

Posted on Nov 8, 2012 READ MORE



Rowman & Littlefield

A Failed Argument for Barack Obama

If Barack Obama is to be held accountable by the aggravated left for his first term in office, it’s for “the damage that his capitulation to Republican extremism has caused.” That’s the central assumption of “The Obama Question: A Progressive Perspective,” an early 2012 apologetic by Gary Dorrien.

Posted on Oct 31, 2012 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

Obama’s Way With Words

“Articulate While Black” moves us away from the content of the president’s messages to an exploration of their delivery, and effectively parlays his style shifting from Black Language to white American English into a national conversation on how we see and hear race.

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 READ MORE



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The Revolutionary Refused the Torch

“Master of the Mountain” by Henry Wiencek reveals that Thomas Jefferson’s slavery practices evolved not in moral terms but in commercial ones.

Posted on Oct 17, 2012 READ MORE



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Race and Class, Past and Present

Avery Arlington, the main character of the novel “Elsewhere, California,” is someone you know: the awkward, only black girl in class, the girl hanging out at the 7-Eleven magazine rack wishing she was anybody but herself, and the artist whose work makes you uncomfortable.

Posted on Oct 10, 2012 READ MORE



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Stifled Lives in the Kingdom

On Saudi Arabia: Its People, Past, Religion, Fault Lines—and Future” depicts a society paralyzed by an economy based almost solely on oil and government handouts. 

Posted on Oct 3, 2012 READ MORE



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Sweden’s Enfant Terrible

Sue Prideaux’s splendid “Strindberg: A Life” sets out not to record every jot and tittle of August Strindberg’s passage from birth to death, but to limn a vivid portrait of its complex, often self-contradictory and brilliant subject.

Posted on Sep 26, 2012 READ MORE



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Orwell’s Weather Reports

The writer’s diaries reveal that he was happiest while gardening and watching his hens. But he also comments that “apparently nothing will ever teach [the rich] that the other 99 percent of the population exist.”

Posted on Sep 19, 2012 READ MORE



Flickr/92YTribeca

Nah, We Straight

Baratunde Thurston’s “How To Be Black,” part memoir, part investigative journalism and part cheeky instruction manual, explores such topics as “How to Be the Angry Negro” and “How to Be the (Next) Black President.”

Posted on Sep 11, 2012 READ MORE


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