A world that was both familiar and strange

Paul Wilson explores the life and landscapes of Stieg Larsson @ The Walrus. I was late coming to Stieg Larsson and his wildly popular Millennium Trilogy. Last spring, when I started reading the first volume, some 20 million people had already beaten me to it. By August, when I finished the third, that figure had… Read more »

The builder sometimes needs the services of the poet

Jorge Sotirios on the false divide between literature and science @ Griffith Review. The earthquake that rocked the Mediterranean during the summer of 1999 was quick and devastating. Lasting thirty-seven seconds and measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale, the consequences were far-reaching. In north western Turkey an unofficial estimate of up to 40,000 died instantly… Read more »

A life we can take pride in having lived

Ronald Dworkin rethinks what it means to live a good life @ The New York Review of Books. Plato and Aristotle treated morality as a genre of interpretation. They tried to show the true character of each of the main moral and political virtues (such as honor, civic responsibility, and justice), first by relating each… Read more »

All art comes from art

Bill Morris on writing, music, and the origins of originality @ The Millions Everybody loves a train wreck. This one started when Jonathan Lethem came barreling down the tracks with an essay in Harper’s called “The Ecstasy of Influence,” in which most of the lines were cribbed from other sources and then ingeniously stitched together… Read more »

A new idea of the human

Sheila Heti argues we need to foster a new art of acting beyond the Method @ Masionneuve. Meryl Streep is famous for her accents: here she is as a Polish woman inSophie’s Choice; there she is mimicking Julia Child’s “distinctive patter”; now she’s an Irishwoman, a Dane, a woman from the Bronx, an Australian, a… Read more »