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Category: Books

A Celebration of Black Heart and Intellect

by Cyrus Cassells | Jun 15, 2015 | Books

  Gregory Pardlo is a poet of joyous variety and wonder. It’s clear from the lively and anthem-like opening poem, “Written By Himself,” in his Pulitzer Prize-winning Digest, that he’s as wide-ranging, humane, irrepressible, and inclusive in his snappy 21st-century fashion as fellow urbanite and trailblazing singer Walt Whitman: I was born in minutes in […]

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You Can’t Make the Congress Do Anything

by Scott Lemieux | Mar 1, 2015 | Books, Culture

  The United States is a separation-of-powers system within which the chief executive has substantially less power over domestic policy than, say, a British prime minister. Despite this, legislation passed by the United States Congress tends to be associated very strongly with the president who signed the bills. The Affordable Care Act—addressing what has been […]

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Notes of a Native Daughter

by Cyrus Cassells | Feb 1, 2015 | Books

  My mother Isabel, a very light-skinned African American, once told me of a lunch stand she happily frequented as a 50s-era teenager in her North Carolina Piedmont town. She went there so frequently that the benevolent owners became akin to “second parents.” One day, she motioned to some students from her high school to […]

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Judging the Supreme Court

by Erwin Chemerinsky | Jan 1, 2015 | Books

  After 227 years of history, how should we judge the United States Supreme Court? All of my years of studying, teaching, and practicing constitutional law have convinced me that the Supreme Court has rarely lived up to lofty expectations and far more often has upheld discrimination and even egregious violations of basic liberties. My […]

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Under the Wheel of Capitalism

by William T. Vollmann | Dec 1, 2014 | Books, Economy

  Germany, 1918: “A scraggly band of child rebels, we met secretly in attics … We were taught by men who claimed they were deserters from the navy to hate the rich, to tell the poor they must rise in a body and fight …” U.S.A., 2014: “I know a lot of people think that […]

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