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January, 1979Back to Top
The Laffer Curve
by Our Readers
The Laffer Curve To the Editor: Roger Starr's review of Jude Wanniski's The Way the World Works [Books in Review, September 1978] challenges the Laffer model by innuendo, not honest scholarship.

Biblical Narrative
by Our Readers
To the Editor: As long as Robert Alter in his essay, “Character in the Bible” [October 1978], finds certain passages from Scripture “worth quoting,” it would be only fair of him to tell us which translation he uses.

The U.S. and Latin America
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I was surprised by the tone of Mark Falcoff's review of Hidden Terrors, my book about torture in Latin America [Books in Review, November 1978], until he disclosed that he had published an essay two years ago that touched on the same subject.

Proposition 13
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In their statistic-laden analysis of the growing tax revolt shaking our country [“The Message of Proposition 13,” September 1978], Seymour Martin Lipset and Earl Raab .

Camp David
by Our Readers
To the Editor: With regard to Robert W. Tucker's article, “Behind Camp David” [November 1978], if the administration were truly desirous of a comprehensive settlement, it would take a comprehensive view of the war begun May 15, 1948 with the Arab invasion of Palestine aimed at rendering Israel a stillborn state.

Thomas Jefferson
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Kenneth S. Lynn's article, “Falsifying Jefferson” [October 1978], performs at least two valuable services. It exposes the shortcomings of Garry Wills's recent book, Inventing America: Jefferson's Declaration of Independence; and it effectively functions to counteract the astonishingly favorable reviews of that book by David Brion Davis and Edmund S.

The China Card
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Edward N. Luttwak [“Against the China Card,” October 1978] does not mention that for many years, as a result of our insistence on the myth of monolithic Communism, we permitted our policy toward Peking to be guided by the Soviet Union and our relations with that country.

Are Homosexuals Gay?
by Samuel McCracken
Writing on homosexuality1 is becoming a growth industry almost in the same class with self-help. (The two categories, as a matter of fact, sometimes overlap.) The most widely heralded recent study is Homosexualities: A Study of Diversity Among Men and Women.2 This volume is a product of the Institute for Sex Research at the University of Indiana founded by the late Alfred Kinsey, and although not based on his work, fulfills the place of a third volume he had hoped to add to his two famous “male” and “female” reports.

Toward a Middle East Alternative
by Steven Spiegel
A peculiarity of the Camp David accords is that they lend themselves to two opposing visions of the future of the Middle East.

The Soul of Man Under Socialism
by Vladimir Bukovsky
It is interesting that despite the huge variety of books, research projects, and monographs on socialism—political, economic, sociological, and so on—no one has thought to write on “the soul of man under socialism.” And yet, without such a guide to the labyrinths of the Soviet soul, all the other studies are absolutely useless or, worse, actually obscure the issue.

Judaism & Harold Bloom
by Cynthia Ozick
Over the last several years, little by little, progressively though gradually, it has come to me that the phrase “Jewish writer” may be what rhetoricians call an “oxymoron”—a pointed contradiction, in which one arm of the phrase clashes so profoundly with the other as to annihilate it.

Redistributing Technology
by Charles Horner
For at least fifteen years, an effort has been under way to create a new international regime for technology—for its diffusion and development, its costs and its consequences.

Funding the Piper
by Samuel Lipman
Though in the United States all the arts are now publicly subsidized on a broad front, music has received a lion's share of the official cultural dollar.

Autumn Interiors
by Vernon Young
If, without knowing anything whatever about the work of either director, one had seen Woody Allen's Interiors and Ingmar Bergman's Autumn Sonata in the order of their respective debuts in New York City, one might have easily concluded that the Swedish film-maker had attempted to imitate the American: the same photographic and cutting style, the same concentration on a handful of overwrought characters, and the very same subject—namely, maternal domination.

Criminal Violence, Criminal Justice, by Charles E. Silberman
by James Wilson
Double StandardCriminal Violence, Criminal Justice. by Charles E. Silberman. Random House. 540 pp. $15.00.Charles Silberman sets out in this book to revive belief in the proposition that the only correct policy for government to adopt in dealing with crime is to attack its root causes.

The Jew as Pariah, by Hannah Arendt, edited by Ron H. Feldman
by Werner Dannhauser
Hannah Arendt & the Jews The Jew as Pariah: Jewish Identity and Politics in the Modern Age. by Hannah Arendt. Edited and with an Introduction by Ron H.

Reviewing the Forties, by Diana Trilling
by Peter Shaw
Art & War Reviewing the Forties. by Diana Trilling. Introduction by Paul Fussell. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. 272 pp. $9.95. The fascist menace dominated the books reviewed by Diana Trilling from 1942 to 1948, when she was fiction critic for the Nation magazine.

Leon Trotsky, by Irving Howe
by Roger Starr
Sentimental Story Leon Trotsky. by Irving Howe. Viking. 193 pp. $7.95. This little book, an expanded version of an essay Irving Howe wrote in the early 1960's, summarizes Trotsky's life as a versatile man of action, theory, and letters, and offers the following evaluation of his character: “Personal tragedies, incalculable sufferings beset him, but he remained erect and combative, faithful in his vision both in its truth and error, insight and blindness.

Worlds Apart, by Sara Lawrence Lightfoot
by Rita Kramer
What Are Schools For? Worlds Apart: Relationships Be-Between Families and Schools. by Sara Lawrence Lightfoot. Basic Books. 257 pp. $12.95. Worlds Apart is an interesting book, less for anything it has to say about the “relationships between families and schools,” which is its subject, than for what it demonstrates about the educational establishment today and what that establishment will support.

American Caesar: Douglas MacArthur 1880-1964, by William Manchester
by Edward Luttwak
Shogun and Strategist American Caesar: Douglas Mac-Arthur 1880-1964. by William Manchester. Little, Brown. 793 pp. $15.00. Douglas MacArthur rose to the top in the small army of the interwar years and then retired in 1934, after serving his full term as chief of staff.

February, 1979Back to Top
The Catacombs
by Our Readers
To the Editor: As an update of Michael Ledeen's fine article, “The Unknown Catacombs” [September 1977], the letter written by Henryk Z.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: In his review of A Coat of Many Colors by Abraham D. Lavender [Books in Review, November 1978], Julius Weinberg argues that feminist Blu Greenberg's suggestions for changes in Orthodox Judaism are unrealistic because of “the glacier-like pace with which the Orthodox rabbinate approaches even the most minute of proposed alterations in the Halakhah.” While I agree with Mr.

Terror in Uruguay
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Mark Falcoff mentions in his review of Hidden Terrors by A. J. Langguth [Books in Review November 1978] that one part of the book consists of “a brief narrative of the decline of democracy in Uruguay, with special attention to those events which later figured in Costa-Gavras's film, State of Siege (1973).” Mr.

Affirmative Action
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In recent months COMMENTARY has provided a forum for those wishing to attack prevailing affirmative-action programs [“Why Bakke Won't End Reverse Discrimination:!” by William J.

Harold Rosenberg
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I want to apologize for at least two inadvertent errors in my piece on Harold Rosenberg [“Remembering Harold Rosenberg,” November 1978].

On Revolution
by Our Readers
To the Editor: If “Whatever Happened to the Russian Revolution?” by Robert V. Daniels [November 1978] is at all representative of Mr.

Camp David
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I read Robert W. Tucker's “Behind Camp David” [November 1978] with great interest. Mr. Tucker's analysis of the actual military implications of the Israeli withdrawal from Sinai is borne out by a recent article in the Neue Zürcher Zeitung which agrees with Mr.

Foreign Aid
by Our Readers
To the Editor: As one who has spent several decades working closely with bilateral and multilateral aid programs in Third World countries, in Washington, and at the UN, I would like to thank P.

Blacks and Jews
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Dorothy Rabinowitz's splendid article, “Blacks, Jews & New York Politics” [November 1978], is another illustration of a fallacy in which we tend to indulge.

Nuclear Energy
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Thank you for having the courage to publish Bernard L. Cohen's “A Tale of Two Wastes” [November 1978] in which the supreme issue—“compared to what?”—is not evaded. Opponents of nuclear power often claim that solar energy is without wastes.

The Case Against SALT II
by Eugene Rostow
In human disputation justice is only agreed on when the necessity is equal; whereas they that have the odds of power exact as much as they can, and the weak yield to such conditions as they can get. —Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War Over the last century, the yearning for peace has given rise—especially in Great Britain, the United States, Scandinavia, the Netherlands, and Canada—to the belief that disarmament agreements, or agreements for arms limitation, are an important means for securing peace.

Singer's Paradoxical Progress
by Ruth Wisse
The award to Isaac Bashevis Singer of the Nobel Prize for Literature brings to a climax the most fortunate career in modern Yiddish letters.

American Politics, Then & Now
by James Wilson
The administration of President Carter offers an appropriate occasion for asking a question that will be raised with growing frequency as this nation approaches the bicentennial observance of the writing of the Constitution: has the American political system changed fundamentally? If no accident befalls him, Jimmy Carter will be the first Democrat in this century to serve a full term in the White House without having to lead the nation into war or out of economic disaster.

The Trouble with Latin America
by Jean-François Revel
Latin America is generally included among the “developing” regions of the world. The term is an awkward one because, first of all, it suggests that a country's or a region's problems are primarily economic in nature, and second, it fails to distinguish among countries and even entire continents with enormous differences in their standards of living and their economic systems.

“Necessary Murder&rdquo : Spender and Auden in the 1930s
by Bernard McCabe
Today the deliberate increase in the chances of death The conscious acceptance of guilt in the necessary murder. W.H. Auden wrote that in 1937, in his poem “Spain.” A year or two earlier, Cecil Day Lewis, a friend and fellow poet, had written: It is now or never the hour of the knife, The break with the past, the major operation. And in 1938, the poet Stephen Spender's political play, The Trial of a Judge, ended like this: Kill!

Guardian Angel
by Sydor Rey
In memory of Dr. Janusz Korczak My friend Henry took me aside to say his child had turned up in France and was coming to New York.

A Reading of Ruth
by Evelyn Strouse
Since Hebrew is not the second language of most of the educated world, the verbal virtuosity of the Scroll of Ruth is difficult to demonstrate and the average reader must take it on faith.

Literary Waifs
by Pearl Bell
Short stories have singular virtues. They are short. They can be read-in one sitting. Like a witty epigram or a clever joke, they can realize their meaning through surprise, or through an abruptly decisive ending which may be charged with ambiguity but nonetheless leaves the reader with a sense of dramatic completeness.

A Time for Truth, by William E. Simon
by Marc Plattner
Liberty & the State A Time for Truth. by William E. Simon. Reader's Digest Press. 248 pp. $12.50. Former “energy czar” and Secretary of the Treasury William E.

Exile and Return, by Martin Gilbert
by Joseph Shattan
The British in Palestine Exile and Return. by Martin Gilbert. Lippincott. 364 pp. $12.95. In a recent article on the fate of the British empire, Sir William Haley, the former editor of the (London) Times, paid tribute to “the understanding, the charity, and the magnanimity” shown by the British to their colonial charges.

The Poetry Anthology 1912-1977, edited by Daryl Hine and Joseph Parisi
by Vernon Young
Poetry in America The Poetry Anthology 1912-1977. by Daryl Hine and Joseph Parisi. Houghton Mifflin. 555 pp. $20.00. The collection under review is a selective record from a single periodical, Poetry, covering sixty-five years under a succession of editors, beginning with its controversial founder, Harriet Monroe.

The Execution of Mayor Yin and Other Stories from the Great Cultural Revolution, by Chen Jo-hsi
by Charles Horner
Tales of Mao's China The Execution of Mayor Yin and Other Stories from the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. by Chen Jo-Hsi. Translated by Nancy Ing and Howard Goldblatt.

The Double Life of George Sand, Woman and Writer, by Renee Winegarten
by John Weightman
The Sand Phenomenon The Double Life of George Sand, Woman and Writer. by Renee Winegarten. Basic Books. 339 pp. $15.00. Another book on George Sand? This famous lady, who survives in popular mythology because she wore trousers and was tempestuously involved with Alfred de Musset and Frédéric Chopin, has never lacked commentators.

Kolyma: The Arctic Death Camps, by Robert Conquest; The Punished Peoples, by Aleksandr M. Nekrich; The Gulag Archipelago 1918-19
by Abraham Brumberg
Soviet Terror Kolyma: The Arctic Death Camps. by Robert Conquest. Viking. 254 pp. $10.95. The Punished Peoples: The Deportation and Fate of Soviet Minorities at the End of the Second World War. by Aleksandr M.

March, 1979Back to Top
The New Philosophers
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I am a devoted reader of COMMENTARY and have always felt your reviews and articles to be reliable guides to new intellectual developments.

South Africa
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I read Carl Gershman's “The World According to Andrew Young” [August 1978] with great pleasure. It was exceedingly refreshing to see such an informed and politically well-educated critique of the simplistic and wrong-headed approach to world affairs of which Andrew Young has, in recent times, been such an important exponent. I write as a member of a group (whose existence is mostly ignored by the Western world) which has experienced the ministrations of Andrew Young all too strongly in recent times.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: In trying to evaluate the debate between my two colleagues over whence Jefferson derived his ideas for the Declaration of Independence, whether primarily, as Garry Wills asserts in Inventing America, from the “communitarian” thinkers of the Scottish Enlightenment or, as Kenneth S.

Sadat and Nasser
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I do not wish to take issue with Barry Rubin's perceptive review of Anwar Sadat's autobiography, In Search of Identity [Books in Review, December 1978], but rather to supplement his observations, especially in one rather important area, Nasser's leadership in Egypt between 1952 and 1970.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: In his review of my book, The Culture of Inequality [Books in Review, November 1978], James A. Nuechterlein unwittingly reveals more about the muddled and often ethically suspect character of neoconservative thought than he does about the substance of my work.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: As a Harvard graduate, . . . I wish to thank Midge Decter and COMMENTARY for the article “Kennedyism Again” [December 1978] which analyzes the ethic of aggrandizing oneself to the utmost while seeking an appearance of somehow benefiting society.

How Not to Make Peace in the Middle East
by Theodore Draper
Why did the negotiations for a peaceful settlement between Egypt and Israel break down? Why has the breakdown been so difficult to overcome? The search for an explanation cannot be limited to the negotiations themselves; it can even be hindered by sticking too closely to the day-by-day “peace process.” The issues that led to the breakdown of the negotiations did not arise at Camp David and could not be settled by the negotiations at Camp David. To get our bearings, we need to step back and view the negotiations from a greater distance.

Lionel Trilling, A Jew at Columbia
by Diana Trilling
If Lionel Trilling had lived to write the autobiographical memoir he had for a long time wanted to write—it was scarcely begun at his death in 1975—an important section of it would no doubt have been devoted to his early career at Columbia and to the difficulties of establishing himself in the English-teaching profession.

Why the Shah Fell
by Walter Laqueur
The Iranian crisis is far from over; in fact it may still be in its early stages. Nevertheless, the mythmakers are already hard at work.

Welfare Reform and the Liberals
by Leslie Lenkowsky
On June 22, 1978, Speaker of the House Thomas P. O'Neill announced that due to the lack of time remaining in the 95th Congress, further consideration of welfare reform would have to be postponed.

What Women Want
by Brigitte Berger
Nowhere is the confusion that characterizes public discourse in the second half of the 20th century more evident than in the recent avalanche of publications on what the German social theorist August Bebel called the “woman question.” Even the most cursory reader of this literature must be struck by a sense of unreality at its description of the world, and a sense of dismay at its lack of perspective.

The Prophets in Modern Idiom
by Chaim Raphael
One greets every new translation of the Bible into English with excitement—and foreboding. The excitement is obvious. The Bible, for all the hold it has on us, is in many ways remote and puzzling; a new translation, in the idiom of our time, may give us its message clearly and coherently, drawing on scholarship and archeology to clarify what is obscure, “making straight in the desert a highway for our God.” But this is where the foreboding comes in.

Yesterday's New Music
by Samuel Lipman
Although the situation of music at the end of World War II was undeniably chaotic, there were important if superficial reasons for optimism.

A Dangerous Place, by Daniel Patrick Moynihan with Suzanne Weaver
by Bernard Lewis
At the United Nations A Dangerous Place. by Daniel Patrick Moynihan with Suzanne Weaver. Atlantic-Little, Brown. 297 pp. $12.50. For a few months in 1975 and 1976, Daniel Patrick Moynihan was United States Ambassador to the United Nations.

The History of Sexuality: Volume I, by Michel Foucault
by Michael Adams
Pillow Talk The History of Sexuality. Volume I: An Introduction. by Michel Foucault. Translated by Robert Hurley. Pantheon. 333 pp. $8.95. Michel Foucault is a French intellectual who has become an international celebrity.

Watergate and the Constitution, by Philip B. Kurland
by Peter Schuck
The Presidency Watergate and the Constitution. by Philip B. Kurland. University of Chicago Press. 256 pp. $12.50. Charles de Gaulle once quipped that generals are always fighting the last war.

A Revolution in Taste, by Louis Simpson
by James Atlas
Modernism and Beyond A Revolution in Taste: Studies of Dylan Thomas, Allen Ginsberg, Sylvia Plath, and Robert Lowell. By Louis Simpson. Macmillan. 198 pp.

The Guns of Lattimer, by Michael Novak
by Arch Puddington
Silent Americans The Guns of Lattimer. by Michael Novak. Basic Books. 276 pp. $10.95. Unlike its counterparts in other Western democracies, the American labor movement has never embraced revolutionary ideologies calling for the ultimate transformation of the economic order.

April, 1979Back to Top
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Despite a number of interesting observations, the essay “Passers-by: The Soviet Jew as Intellectual” [December 1978] by Simon Markish seems to me to be gravely in error.

The Issue of Homosexuality
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Samuel McCracken's “Are Homosexuals Gay?” [January] is marvelous: a brilliant work of both exposition and analysis. . .

Selling Them the Rope
by Carl Gershman
I must say that Lenin foretold this whole process. Lenin, who spent most of his life in the West and not in Russia, who knew the West much better than Russia, always wrote and said that the Western capitalists would do anything to strengthen the economy of the USSR.

Zionism vs. Anti-Semitism
by Jacob Katz
Ever since its emergence as a national movement, Zionism has had its ideological and political opponents. Within Jewry itself, opposition arose in the early days both from the Left—the socialists and Communists—and from the Right—the Orthodox.

Europe-The Good News and the Bad
by Michael Ledeen
Western Europe has entered a period of intense political activity. With France and Germany pressing for the new European Monetary System; with Spain, Portugal, and Greece asking for entry into the Common Market; and with Great Britain on the edge of making a genuine commitment to Europe, one has the sensation of a possible great revival.

An Extraordinary Catholic Childhood
by Saul Friedlander
I was born in Prague at the worst possible moment, four months before Hitler came to power. My father was a lawyer by training, and later became vice president of a large insurance company in Czechoslovakia.

Writing About Oneself
by Alfred Kazin
I do not know what “autobiography” is: the genre changes with each new example. What I myself have tried to write in my three “autobiographical” books, A Walker in The City, Starting Out in the Thirties, and New York Jew, is personal history, a form of my own influenced by the personal writings of Emerson, Thoreau, Whitman.

Arab Money and the Universities
by Seth Cropsey
A quiet but important change has been occurring in foreign gift-giving to American universities. Until recently such donations generally funded scientific projects of mutual interest to donor and university, such as communications, environmental planning, or health.

Imaginings of Africa
by Pearl Bell
It would be difficult to summon up a gathering of novelists more dissimilar in temperament, experience, and craft than Joseph Conrad, Evelyn Waugh, Joyce Cary, Saul Bellow, Graham Greene, and John Updike.

A New Patriotism?
by Richard Grenier
In 1891 the children of the Beach Street Industrial School near the docks on Manhattan's lower West Side voted by secret ballot on whether or not they wanted, each morning, to salute the American flag.

The Culture of Narcissism, by Christopher Lasch
by Kenneth Lynn
Self & Society The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in an Age of Diminishing Expectations. by Christopher Lasch. Norton. 268 pp. $11.95. Who lost America? It wasn't the Left's fault, replies Christopher Lasch in his apocalyptic new book, The Culture of Narcissism.

Wanderings, by Chaim Potok
by Erich Isaac
Among the Nations Wanderings: Chaim Potok's History of the Jews. by Chaim Potok. Knopf. 398 pp. $17.95. This history of the Jews is beautifully produced, with marvellous illustrations.

The Three Worlds of Leonid, by Leonid Berman
by Hilton Kramer
St. Petersburg to Paris The Three Worlds of Leonid. by Leonid Berman. Translated from the French by Olivier Bernier. Preface by Virgil Thomson.

The German Problem Reconsidered, by David Calleo; Germany 1866-1945, by Gordon A. Craig
by John Starrels
Modern Germany The German Problem Reconsidered. by David Calleo. Cambridge University Press. 239 pp. $11.95. Germany 1866-1945. by Gordon A. Craig. Oxford University Press. 825 pp.

A Season of Youth, by Michael Kammen
by Peter Shaw
Art and the Revolution A Season of Youth: The American Revolution and the Historical Imagination. by Michael Kammen. Knopf. 384 pp. $15.00. The differences between Michael Kammen's new book and his People of Paradox, which was published in 1973, reflect a sharp change in the climate of American intellectual life over the past five years.

Main Currents of Marxism, by Leszek Kolakowski
by David Gress
Socialism as a Doctrine Main Currents of Marxism. Volume I: The Founders. Volume II: The Golden Age. Volume III: The Breakdown. by Leszek Kolakowski. Oxford University Press.

Reader Letters April 1979
by Samuel McCracken
The Issue of Homosexuality TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: Samuel McCracken's "Are Homo- sexuals Gay?" [January] is marvel- ous: a brilliant work of both ex- position and analysis.... JOSEPH ADELSON Department of Psychology University of Michigan Ann Arbor, Michigan TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: "Are Homosexuals Gay?" is a splendidly written and particularly timely statement.

May, 1979Back to Top
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I am over seventy and have spent a lifetime reading the pros and cons, the facts and myths, of socialism and Communism, but never have I read anything so profoundly persuasive and wise as Vladimir Bukovsky's “The Soul of Man Under Socialism” [January].

Race and the Court
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In my letter in the December 1978 issue commenting on “Why Bakke Won't End Reverse Discrimination: 1” by William J.

Orthodoxy and Feminism
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Julius Weinberg, in replying to Israel Kaminsky [Letters from Readers, February, in a discussion of Mr. Weinberg's review of A Coat of Many Colors, edited by Abraham D.

Liberty and Intervention
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Marc F. Plattner's review of A Time for Truth by William E. Simon [Books in Review, February] is typical of a certain approach to politics that has led America toward the loss of its distinctive and extremely valuable political character.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: If, as Milton Himmelfarb [“Pluralism Ancient and Modern,” December 1978] concludes, there is “time enough to be hoity-toity about democracy and pluralism when the Messiah comes,” then why should he be concerned about what the ancients taught about pluralism? If pluralism is so simple a choice, why has he created such a complex defense of it? To begin to interpret Mr.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: As one who was profoundly affected at the time by Auden's poetry of the late 30's, especially his “Spain,” only to experience a diametric reversal of political views (at the time of, and probably somewhat prior to, reading Gide's Retour de l'URSS), I would have appreciated Bernard McCabe's article, “‘Necessary Murder’: Spender & Auden in the 30's” [February], even more if Auden's political philosophy had been brought up to date just before his death.

Schools and Society
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Rita Kramer's review of my book, Worlds Apart [Books in Review, January], was an outrage. First, I would suggest that she read the entire book before beginning her uninformed tirade—this time with a more intelligent and responsible vision and voice.

Judaism and Revision
by Our Readers
To the Editor: The problem with Cynthia Ozick's analysis of Harold Bloom's literary criticism [“Judaism & Harold Bloom,” January] is that she herself is a victim of the idol-making she imputes to Bloom and to modernity.

Political Change
by Our Readers
To the Editor: James Q. Wilson's three-part explanation for the continuing “schizophrenia of contemporary politics” [“American Politics, Then & Now,” February] comes as a welcome addition to current interpretations of recent political developments.

The Politics of Jonestown
by Midge Decter
On November 21, 1978, the New York Times—in a gesture normally reserved by that somber and august institution for the outbreak of war or the arrival of peace—carried a full seven-column front-page headline.

Converting the Gentiles?
by Peter Berger
Rabbi Alexander Schindler, in a presidential address to the Board of Trustees of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations on December 2, 1978, proposed that American Judaism (or at any rate its Reform wing) actively seek converts from among the religiously unaffiliated: “I believe that it is time for our movement to launch a carefully conceived Outreach Program aimed at all Americans who are unchurched and who are seeking roots in religion.” Modern Jews, Rabbi Schindler acknowledged, have for all sorts of reasons been reluctant to seek converts, but this reluctance is no longer appropriate in today's American context.

Portrait of the Radical as an Aging Man
by William Barrett
Philip Rahv might seem to be a figure of purely local and circumscribed interest. He was, with William Phillips, co-founder of Partisan Review in 1934, and thereafter continued as an editor of that magazine during the following two decades.

Samson: A Pseudepigraphical Jest
by Roger Kaplan
The story of Samson, son of Manoah of the tribe of Dan, as handed down to us in our years and centuries of wandering in Edom, in Provence, Galicia, Lithuania, and Illinois, since the days when it was first related in the Book of Judges. JUDGES XIII: 1 These were ordinary days, the days in which this story takes place, days that saw too little moral fiber and remembrance of what it is man's destiny to do or at least try to do as it has been revealed to him by God and taught to him by our teacher Moses, days in which the people of Israel sinned: going after other gods and selling themselves and their fellows to enrich themselves and satisfy their lust or distinguish themselves and satisfy their vanity; they did many of the abominable things which men are capable of and which God hates; and indeed He was unhappy with them for He allowed the Philistines to overrun the beautiful country which He had given them, making it unclean, reintroducing their false gods upon its soil, and, worst of all, making a bad example for the children: for all of four long and painful decades. _____________   —:2-7 Manoah, a man from Zorah who belonged to the tribe of Dan, was unhappy with this state of affairs, for although he sometimes overlooked the dietary laws, he was a righteous man and knew corruption when he saw it, but being no prophet, he hoped only to pass on what he knew to a son; unfortunately, his wife could not give him one, nor even a daughter for that matter.

Literary Lives
by Robert Alter
In memory of F. W. Dupee We cannot know completely the intricacies with which any mind negotiates with its surroundings to produce literature.

How Rumkowski Died
by Michael Checinski
On August 30, 1944, I left Ghetto Lodz together with my whole family. They had somehow succeeded in surviving the most horrible times in the ghetto: my father, my mother, my older brother, and my younger sister.

World War II-Soviet Style
by Joshua Rubenstein
This past year, a unique series of documentary films on World War II appeared on television stations in twelve major American cities.

The State of the Art
by Samuel Lipman
Though in the world of pop culture fresh sounds would seem to appear with happy frequency, the central problem of serious music today is the absence of new music.

King of the Jews, by Leslie Epstein
by Ruth Wisse
Fairy Tale King of the Jews. by Leslie Epstein. Coward, McCann & Geoghegan. 350 pp. $10.95. I. L. Peretz, the dominating figure of modern Yiddish literature, has a story called “Stories” in which a struggling young writer finds himself between two conflicting literary aims.

Anyone's Daughter, by Shana Alexander
by Kenneth Lynn
Elephants & Mothers Anyone's Daughter. by Shana Alexander. Viking. 541 pp. $12.95. As a journalist, Shana Alexander has never been able to separate her private self from the public events and figures she has covered.

The Spanish Revolution, by Burnett Bolloten
by Joseph Shattan
The Civil War in Spain The Spanish Revolution. by Burnett Bolloten. University of North Carolina Press. 644 pp. $29.00. The Spanish Civil War engaged the passions of an entire generation of European and American anti-fascists.

Democracy and the Novel, by Henry Nash Smith
by Ellen Moers
The Literary Marketplace Democracy and the Novel: Popular Resistance to Classic American Writers. by Henry Nash Smith. Oxford. 204 pp. $13.95. With his 1950 study, Virgin Land, Henry Nash Smith won a permanent welcome on the shelves of readers who want and somehow still hope to find unusual, lively, and significant criticism of American literature.

The Pursuit of Happiness and Other Sobering Thoughts, by George F. Will
by Marc Plattner
A Liberal Conservative The Pursuit of Happiness and Other Sobering Thoughts. by George F. Will. Harper & Row. 320 pp. $10.95. George F. Will is unquestionably America's finest political columnist.

June, 1979Back to Top
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In “A Reading of Ruth” [February] Evelyn Strouse and Bezalel Porten maintain that Ruth's “first kindness” was to Naomi and her “last kindness” was for the benefit of Boaz.

Lionel Trilling
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I should like to add a small anecdote about Nicholas Murray Butler, one which might interest readers of Diana Trilling's affecting memoir about Lionel Trilling [“Lionel Trilling, A Jew at Columbia,” March]. During 1933-34, I was editor-in-chief of the Columbia Daily Spectator.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: I was astonished to see Abraham Brumberg, in his review of Solzhenitsyn's The Gulag Archipelago, Volume III [Books in Review, February], joining the campaign that has been going on for two or three years to discredit, or perhaps to tame, Solzhenitsyn.

Egypt and Israel
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In “How Not to Make Peace in the Middle East” [March], a critique of President Carter's efforts to achieve peace in this turbulent area, Theodore Draper correctly relates post-Camp David difficulties to various aspects of the thirty years of conflict in the area.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: . . . A few years ago, when COMMENTARY published articles by Daniel P. Moynihan and others suggesting that we respond openly and seriously to those countries which incited opposition to us by propagating lies about us, .

The Harrisburg Syndrome
by Samuel McCracken
I The year 1978 ended on a moderately upbeat note for nuclear power. In December, Westinghouse sold two reactors, saving the industry from the embarrassment of a year without orders.

Why Racial Preference Is Illegal and Immoral
by Carl Cohen
The role of race in assuring social justice is again squarely before the Supreme Court in a case whose full and revealing name is: Kaiser Aluminum & Chemical Corporation and United Steelworkers of America, AFL-CIO, v.

Sex According to the Song of Songs
by Hyam Maccoby
In the course of the last 2,000 years, a voluminous literature has grown up around the Song of Songs, one of the shortest books of the Hebrew Bible.

Liberation Theology and the Pope
by Michael Novak
On his highly publicized voyage to Mexico late in January 1979, Karol Wojtyla, only recently become Pope John Paul II, faced two systems of authoritarianism.

Jerusalem at “Peace&rdquo
by Edward Grossman
Jerusalem: On the night of March 26, when a miracle that was half-expected finally took place and a treaty of peace between the Jewish state and Egypt was signed on the lawn of the White House, the weather in Jerusalem was fierce.

Jane Fonda & Other Political Thinkers
by Richard Grenier
In the late summer of 1970 I was riding in a chauffeured limousine in New York with Jane Fonda. Her discovery of the world of radical politics was brand new, her previous enthusiasms, as I recall, having been for things as varied as the Actors' Studio, cooking, and the sybaritic life as conceived by her first husband, the French film director Roger Vadim.

Heller & Malamud, Then & Now
by Pearl Bell
What would happen if reviewers of fiction were forced to abide by the blindfold rules of winetasting? If they were not allowed to know who wrote the book, reviewers would not risk being intimidated by the novelist's reputation, and, more important, they would feel less morally compelled to praise a bad novel because they share the political and ideological posture of its author. In the case of Joseph Heller's third novel, Good as Gold,1 “blind” reviewing would almost certainly have provoked very different critical opinions.

Strategic Options for the Early Eighties, edited by William R. Van Cleave and W. Scott Thompson
by Edward Luttwak
Saving the Day Strategic Options for the Early Eighties: What Can Be Done? by William R. Van Cleave and W. Scott Thompson. National Strategy Information Center.

Happy Endings, by Margaret Logan
by Naomi Decter
Mother Love Happy Endings. by Margaret Logan. Houghton-Mifflin. 164 pp. $7.95. One by product of the women's movement has been the re-evaluation of their mothers by women of raised consciousness.

Innocents of the West, by Joan Colebrook
by Roger Starr
Anti-Americanism Innocents of the West. by Joan Colebrook. Basic Books. 454 pp. $15.00. For some lonely Americans who suffered incommunicado through the impieties of the 60's, Innocents of the West is, though belated, as welcome as Friday's foot-print on the sands of Crusoe's Island.

Children of the Holocaust, by Helen Epstein
by Sonia Taitz
Survivor Syndrome Children of the Holocaust. by Helen Epstein. Putnam. 398 pp. $10.95. From its title, Helen Epstein's Children of the Holocaust would seem to be another book about the “war against the Jews.” The title is ambiguous, however, and conceals the uniqueness of Miss Epstein's topic.

Heavy Sands, by Anatoly Rybakov
by Walter Laqueur
The other Russia Heavy Sands (Tiazhelyi Pesok). by Anatoly Rybakov. Oktyabr (Moscow), July, August, September 1978. I first came across the name of Anatoly Rybakov in 1950 when I read his novel, The Drivers (Voditeli).

July, 1979Back to Top
Politics and Literature
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Pearl K. Bell's discussion of Dan Jacobson's latest novel, The Confessions of Josef Baisz [Fiction, “Imaginings of Africa,” April], betrays a literary sensibility seemingly innocent of political understanding.

Women and Society
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I found Brigitte Berger's article, “What Women Want” [March], tremendously interesting. I believe it is an accurate portrayal of what is happening to women. Eleanor McGovern Washington, D.C. _____________   To the Editor: In “What Women Want” Brigitte Berger reveals herself as deeply antagonistic to the women's movement.

Foreign Aid
by Our Readers
To the Editor: “Foreign Aid for What?” by P.T. Bauer and John O'Sullivan [December 1978] contains some falsehoods, half-truths, ill-established assertions, logical and economic errors, and arguments which are legitimate when applied to parts of the aid question, but illegitimate when applied to the whole.

The War Against Zimbabwe
by Bayard Rustin
No election held in any country at any time within memory has been more widely or vociferously scorned by international opinion than the election conducted last April in Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe Rhodesia.

Misreading the Middle East
by Elie Kedourie
The five years or so which have elapsed since the Yom Kippur War have seen the United States sustain two very serious setbacks in the Middle East.

Sociobiology & Its Critics
by Charles Frankel
The wheel of intellectual fashion turns and returns in universities—behaviorism, eugenics, the New History, the New Criticism, pragmatism, Marxism, logical positivism, existentialism, operant conditioning, revisionist history, structuralism.

Living with Intermarriage
by David Singer
To Non-Jews, the attitude of the American Jewish community toward intermarriage must appear puzzling. On the one hand, American Jews seem to want nothing more than to be fully integrated into American society.

From Avant-Garde to Pop
by Samuel Lipman
In music composition at the present time, anything goes. Vanished are the days of the enforced styles associated with post-World War II modernism—serialism, neo-Dadaism, and indeterminacy among them.

Freak Shows
by Jack Richardson
The protagonists of the two most successful dramas this season on Broadway, Whose Life Is It Anyway? and The Elephant Man, are a paralytic and a physical monster.

Woody Allen in the Limelight
by Richard Grenier
In 1952 Charlie Chaplin, after a long, historic career as a comic, for the first time signed a new film “Charles Spencer Chaplin.” The new film was Limelight, the story of a master vaudevillian of mature years, named Cavallo and played by Chaplin, who is loved by a beautiful young Englishwoman, played by Claire Bloom.

Confessions of a Conservative, by Garry Wills
by Werner Dannhauser
Against the Center Confessions of a Conservative. by Garry Wills. Doubleday. 231 pp. $10.00. Garry Wills has written so much of late and received so much approbation that he is on the way to becoming a cultural phenomenon rather than a mere author.

Two Rothschilds and the Land of Israel, by Simon Schama
by Chaim Raphael
The Appeal of Zion Two Rothschilds and the Land of Israel. by Simon Schama. Knopf. 399 pp. $15.95. Nothing is better for one's peace of mind about Israel than to turn from the current political and military headlines to the passionate dramas of years gone by, when the issues at stake were the acquisition of a few dunams of land, the provision of a well or a gasoline pump, experimenting with a new crop, building a schoolroom.

Art and Politics in the Weimar Period, 1917-1933, by John Willett
by Henry Pachter
Seeing Red Art and Politics in the Weimar Period, 1917-1933. by John Willett. Pantheon. 272 pp. Illustrated. $17.95. John Willett, once an editor of the London Times Literary Supplement, is a Brecht scholar of whom one has the right to expect something of interest on the subject of this book—and, indeed, the book has been in general well received by the reviewers.

The Cultural Pattern in American Politics, by Robert Kelley
by Murray Friedman
Pluralism The Cultural Pattern in American Politics. by Robert Kelley. Knopf. 368 pp. $15.00. Although one frequently hears it said that this is a time of greater social and political conservatism, with Americans fretting about high taxes, inflation, and rising welfare costs, another way of looking at the current scene is that we have entered an age of pluralism, in which cultural politics has emerged as a force equal to or greater than other factors.

Public Nuisances, by R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr.
by Elliott Abrams
Poison Pen Public Nuisances. by R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr. Basic Books. 248 pp. $11.95. The late Richard Hofstadter called ours an “Age of Rubbish,” and with this view R.

August, 1979Back to Top
Homosexuality, Cont.
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I am quite content to let your readers decide whether I have misrepresented Samuel McCracken's views, or he mine: and indeed which of us may be hysterical and prejudiced [Letters from Readers, April, in a discussion of Mr.

Music Criticism
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Samuel Lipman's articles are always extraordinarily good, but in “Yesterday's New Music” [March] he outdoes himself. To make sense out of some of the affectations that pass for music is indeed a notable achievement.

Arab Studies
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I believe that Seth Cropsey's article, “Arab Money and the Universities” [April], was uninformed and unfair to Georgetown University and its Center for Contemporary Arab Studies and to my own scholarly work. While we at the center are grateful for the generosity of the Libyan and other Arab governments, we do not honor these governments by accepting their grants.

Welfare Reform
To the Editor: Leslie Lenkowsky's article, “Welfare Reform and the Liberals” [March], is a brilliant and courageous discussion of a complex and sensitive issue.

The Unknown War
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In my article on The Unknown War [“World War II-Soviet Style,” May], I neglected to acknowledge the generous help of Professor Alexander Nekrich of the Harvard Russian Research Center.

Trade and the USSR
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I subscribe almost fully to what Carl Gershman says in his article, “Selling Them the Rope: Business & the Soviets” [May].

Ten Questions about SALT II
by Edward Luttwak
As part of a campaign for ratification of the SALT II agreement, ten questions and answers pertaining to the treaty have been sent by the Carter administration to all members of the United States Senate.

Myths about Minorities
by Thomas Sowell
Will Rogers once said that it's not ignorance that is so bad, but all the things we know “that ain't so.” Much of what we “know” about racial and ethnic minorities in America is unsubstantiated and just plain wrong. We “know,” for example, that there is in this country a majority of white Anglo-Saxon Protestants (Wasps) surrounded by a fringe of minorities, who have lower incomes, occupations, and IQ's, and higher fertility rates and crime rates.

Watergate: Toward a Revisionist View
by James Nuechterlein
Few of us by now can muster the will to wallow any further in Watergate. However we feel about Richard Nixon and the series of events that brought him down, we want above all to be done with both of them.

A New Theory of Kashrut
by Robert Alter
One of the most memorable illustrations of the dialectical boldness that rabbinic literature could on occasion assume toward its own governing institutions is a statement of the 3rd-century sage, Rav, about the dietary prohibitions.

Wandering Jews
by Edouard Roditi
The legend of the Wandering Jew, of his miraculous longevity and of the curse that drives him to travel ceaselessly through the centuries until the Second Coming of Christ, appears to have originated at a relatively late date and only in certain countries of Central and Western Europe.

Evil & William Styron
by Pearl Bell
In an introductory note to The Confessions of Nat Turner, his brooding story of the Negro preacher who led the only significant slave revolt in American history, William Styron wrote that he had tried “to produce a work that is less an ‘historical novel’ in conventional terms than a meditation on history.” His new novel, Sophie's Choice,1 is also, in part, a meditation on history, a gravely ambitious attempt to confront the truth of the Nazi death camps and to define the moral legacy of the Holocaust not only for the Jews but for all of humanity. The Nazi slaughter of eleven million European Jews and Gentiles may seem a curious choice of subject for William Styron, ah Anglo-Saxon Presbyterian from Virginia whose previous work derived in one way or another from personal experience: his Southern upbringing (Lie Down in Darkness and The Confessions of Nat Turner), his brief stint in the Marines toward the end of World War II (The Long March), and a year spent in Italy after he won the Prix de Rome (Set This House on Fire).

How Not to Do Shakespeare & How Not to Write a Play
by Jack Richardson
By now it should be well known that the much-anticipated and short-lived production of Richard III with Al Pacino in the title role was something of a disaster.

Sideshow, by William Shawcross
by Charles Horner
From Nixon to Pol Pot Sideshow: Kissinger, Nixon, and the Destruction of Cambodia. by William Shawcross. Simon & Schuster. 467 pp. $13.95. With the collapse in 1975 of the American effort to preserve non-Communist regimes in Indochina, it became certain that subsequent developments there would come to be measured against previous American attitudes, presumptions, and predictions.

Being Jewish in America, by Arthur Hertzberg
by Julius Weinberg
Spokesman? Being Jewish in America. by Arthur Hertzberg. Schocken. 287 pp. $16.95. The commitment of American Jews to liberal reform became something of a political axiom in the two decades after World War II.

The Streets Were Paved with Gold, by Ken Auletta
by James Adams
New York in Crisis The Streets were Paved with Gold. by Ken Auletta. Random House. 344 pp. $12.95. To reporters covering the New York City fiscal crisis, it was at first the most significant story in the country.

For Capital Punishment, by Walter Berns
by Peter Berger
Killing & the State For Capital Punishment: Crime and the Morality of the Death Penalty. by Walter Berns. Basic Books. 214 pp. $10.95. In the case of this book, the title and subtitle give, for once, an accurate idea of the contents.

September, 1979Back to Top
by Our Readers
To the Editor: By concluding that the revolution in Iran might have been avoided had the Shah used his discretionary powers properly, Walter Laqueur [“Why the Shah Fell,” March] attempts to provide a political answer to the political question, what made the regime weak enough to be toppled? His answer is predicated on the assumption that political successes and failures are attributable far more to acts of statesmanship than to exterior—social, economic, or cultural—forces.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: As an inhabitant of the Bay Area, I turned eagerly to “The Politics of Jonestown” by Midge Decter [May].

Rumkowski: Fiction
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Ruth R. Wisse reviews Leslie Epstein's King of the Jews [Books in Review, May] as though she were grading an essay test in Holocaust History 101: the following facts are missing from the answer, and therefore the student fails.

Romskowki: Fact
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In “How Rumkowski Died” [May] Michael Checinski describes the death in Auschwitz of Mordechai Chaim Rumkowski, the head of the Jewish Council (Judenrat) of the Lodz ghetto.

The Weber Case
by Our Readers
To the Editor: As I write, in early July, with the echoes still reverberating from the Supreme Court's rejection of Brian Weber's reverse-discrimination suit against Kaiser Aluminum and the United Steelworkers, it seems like a sour compliment to say of Carl Cohen's fine analysis [“Why Racial Preference is Illegal & Immoral,” June] that he had all the arguments on his side, but not the votes.

Nuclear Energy
by Our Readers
To the Editor: It is most heartening to see COMMENTARY stand up to the anti-nuclear witch-hunt with another excellent article by Samuel McCracken, “The Harrisburg Syndrome” [June]. I would, however, like to supplement (not contradict) a point about meltdowns.

Oil and American Power-Six Years Later
by Robert Tucker
It will soon be six years since the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) raised the price of its oil fourfold.

Justice Debased: The Weber Decision
by Carl Cohen
A racial quota in the allotment of on-the-job training opportunities among competing employees, instituted by management-union agreement, was held lawful by the Supreme Court in the recent case of Steelworkers v.

The Illusions of SALT
by Leopold Labedz
The Lessons of History During the last world war, Leopold Schwarzschild, the anti-Nazi critic of German nationalism, wrote a trenchant analysis of the illusions of the inter-war period: Never again must we succumb to the myth that power and armaments and compulsion are of themselves sinful and evil as such.

by Shulamith Hareven
Mrs. Dolly Jacobus, who in recent years had arrived at a sure and sedate self-love, sat at her desk pondering how to finish a letter.

“Human Rights” at Harvard Law School
by Daniel Benson
In late January 1979, at the Harvard Law School, announcement was made of a forthcoming weekend conference, entitled “Third World Communities and Human Rights: A Commonality of Interests.” The conference, sponsored by the black, Asian-American, and Chicano law-student associations, was to be held on February 16 and 17, 1979, on the premises and with the active assistance of the law school.

John Wayne's Image
by Richard Grenier
At John Wayne's death, the President of the United States said that he reflected “the best of our national character.” “In an age of few heroes,” Mr.

In Defense of Decadent Europe, by Raymond Aron
by Michael Ledeen
Crisis of the West In Defense of Decadent Europe. by Raymond Aron. Translated by Stephen Cox. Regnery/Gateway. 297 pp. $14.95. This book, which Henry Kissinger called “one of the most important intellectual statements of our time,” is written by the outstanding Western intellectual of the postwar period.

The American Movement to Aid Soviet Jews, by William W. Orbach
by Stephen Whitfield
Leaving Russia The American Movement to Aid Soviet Jews. by William W. Orbach. University of Massachusetts Press. 224 pp. $15.00. Bereft of their cultural and religious institutions, suspected of “cosmopolitanism” within a workers' state, denied even the charade of an “autonomous republic” while rendered vulnerable by the ethnic designation in their internal passports, and threatened with quotas that erode their educational and vocational opportunities, the Jews of the Soviet Union have begun to transform themselves from objects of fate into historical subjects and moral agents.

The Powers That Be, by David Halberstam
by Michael Novak
Bill, Phil, Buff & Harry The Powers That Be. by David Halberstam. Knopf. 771 pp. $15.00. In days gone by, “the powers that be” meant bankers and the owners of huge corporations that produce steel, oil, motors, and the like—barons who through the power of advertising towered above the media and to whom the media were thought to be subservient.

The Heretical Imperative, by Peter L. Berger
by Werner Dannhauser
Religion & Modernity The Heretical Imperative: Contemporary Possibilities of Religious Affirmation. by Peter L. Berger. Anchor Press/Doubleday. 220 pp. $9.95. Peter L. Berger is a sociologist of unusual depth and range who has written lucidly on a variety of subjects, including epistemology and developmental problems of the Third World.

Jews and the Left, by Arthur Liebman
by Bernard Johnpoll
Radical Jews Jews and the Left. by Arthur Liebman. Wiley. 676 pp. $17.95. For good or ill, Jews have historically been attracted in disproportionate numbers to radical movements.

The White Album, by Joan Didion
by James Wilson
In CaliforniaThe White Album. by Joan Didion. Simon & Schuster. 223 pp. $9.95.Joan Didion—or rather the reputation of Joan Didion—is a puzzle.

Reader Letters September 1979
by Sidney Hook
TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: It is most heartening to see COM- MENTARY stand up to the anti-nu- clear witch-hunt with another ex- cellent article by Samuel Mc- Cracken, "The Harrisburg Syn- drome" [June]. I would, however, like to supple- ment (not contradict) a point about meltdowns.

October, 1979Back to Top
Cambodia and Vietnam
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In his review of William Shaw-cross's Sideshow [Books in Review, August], . . . Charles Horner does not discuss the real problem of the book: namely, its failure to consider Cambodia's role in the overall history of the Indochina conflict. Under French colonial rule, Cambodia and Cochin China (later South Vietnam) were treated almost as one territorial unit.

Soviet Writing
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In his review of Anatoly Rybakov's novel, Heavy Sands [Books in Review, June], Walter Laqueur asserts that it is “the first [novel] published in the Soviet Union since 1948” that presents a “detailed description .

Politics and the Novel
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Having seen how fully Pearl K. Bell misconstrues my letter in the July issue on her review of Dan Jacobson's The Confessions of Josef Baisz [Fiction, “Imaginings of Africa,” April], I now understand her failure to review Jacobson's book properly. I drew attention to the phenomenon that Jacobson explains because Mrs.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: Samuel Lipman's interesting article, “The State of the Art” [Music, May], touches on the complete absence of worthwhile new music, but does not probe the reasons.

The Song of Songs
by Our Readers
To the Editor: “Sex According to the Song of Songs” by Hyam Maccoby [June] is a fascinating guide through the labyrinthine mazes of the origins and meanings of this endlessly puzzling book of the Hebrew Bible.

Foreign Ade, Cont.
by Our Readers
To the Editor: We do not wish to reply in detail to the comments of P.T. Bauer and John O'Sullivan on our comments on the role of international aid to poor countries [Letters from Readers, July, referring to “Foreign Aid for What?” by Messrs.

Liberation and Theology
by Our Readers
To the Editor: We are all enormously in debt to Michael Novak for his article, “Liberation Theology and the Pope” [June].

by Our Readers
To the Editor: . . . As an aspiring sociobiologist who rejects all forms of psychological determinism (whether of the environmental, genetic, or economic variety), I found Charles Frankel's article, “Sociobiology & Its Critics” [July], positively inspiring.

Singer and American Jewry
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In his letter in the July issue commenting on “Singer's Paradoxical Progress” by Ruth R. Wisse [February], Rabbi Samuel H.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: Congratulations to James A. Nuechterlein for giving some perspective to a tragic event in American political history [“Watergate: Toward a Revisionist View,” August].

Black Anti-Semitism on the Rise
by Murray Friedman
The resignation of Andrew Young as Ambassador to the United Nations might have seemed to raise the issue of the proper conduct of American foreign policy, and the proper role of an ambassador in carrying out that policy.

The Socialists and the PLO
by Carl Gershman
by Carl Gershman The meeting in Vienna last July of former West German Chancellor Willy Brandt and Austrian Chancellor Bruno Kreisky with Yasir Arafat, the leader of the Palestine Liberation Organization, will be remembered primarily as the PLO leader's first visit to a Western democracy.

The Lawyers' War Against Democracy
by Franklin Hunt
Every reader who followed the Bakke and Weber cases must have marveled—and not for the first time—at the power of lawyers and judges to run the country with lawsuits.

A New Soviet Strategy
by Francis Fukuyama
The reason for Russia's interest in the Middle East is solely that of power politics. Considering her announced purpose of Communizing the world, it is easy to understand her hope of dominating the Middle East. —President Eisenhower, 1957 The Soviet Union sees its security in spreading Communism.

Women as Conservative Rabbis?
by Ruth Wisse
The current controversy over the admission of women to the rabbinate of the Conservative movement is one of the few local and “internal” issues to stir the temperate world of American Judaism in recent years.

Elizabeth Hardwick and Mary McCarthy
by Pearl Bell
More than thirty years ago, Elizabeth Hardwick and Mary McCarthy began their literary careers with precocious works of fiction (The Ghostly Lover and The Company She Keeps).

Coppola's Folly
by Richard Grenier
T.S. Eliot, in the very first of his Selected Essays, wrote: “The difference between art and the event is always absolute.” One might have thought that the author of Apocalypse Now—who has taken “The Waste Land” and its notes as his bedside book, who has drawn the whole concept of his plot from the epigraph of “The Hollow Men” (“Mistah Kurtz—he dead”), and whose own “Colonel Kurtz” quotes Eliot with singular portentousness at the film's climax—would have given this proposition some consideration.

The Neoconservatives, by Peter Steinfels
by James Nuechterlein
New Political Thinkers The Neoconservatives: The Men Who are Changing America's Politics. by Peter Steinfels. Simon & Schuster. 335 pp. $11.95. For over forty years now, America's liberals and conservatives have spent most of their time arguing, in one way or another, about the New Deal.

Surviving and Other Essays, by Bruno Bettelheim
by David Biale
After the Holocaust Surviving and Other Essays. by Bruno Bettelheim. Knopf. 432 pp. $15.00. Few followers of Freud have had as wide a range of concerns as Bruno Bettelheim.

Senator, by Elizabeth Drew
by Joseph Bishop
Campaign Biography Senator. by Elizabeth Drew. Simon & Schuster. 191 pp. $8.95. The campaign biography is a familiar variety of literature in this country.

William Blake, by Jack Lindsay
by Milton Klonsky
Blake as Marxist William Blake. by Jack Lindsay. Braziller. 334 pp. $15.00. Derided in his own time as a religious crank teetering on madness; rejected by critics and connoisseurs of art as a bungler, incapable of drawing the human figure correctly; virtually ignored as a poet, so that he was forced to engrave and publish his own works, the poet-painter William Blake has since become one of the most influential figures of the Romantic era.

How the Soviet Union Is Governed, by Jerry F. Hough and Merle Fainsod
by Richard Pipes
Revisionist Revision How the Soviet Union is Governed. by Jerry F. Hough and Merle Fainsod. Harvard University Press. 679 pp. $17.50. When Ibsen brought out A Doll's Home a hundred years ago, its denouement proved too strong for conventional tastes, and so a number of theaters in Europe and the United States began to stage the play with a “happy ending.” In one of these versions, called Breaking a Butterfly and subtitled “Founded on Ibsen's Norah” the heroine declared herself in the final scene a “poor weak foolish girl” undeserving of her husband and stayed home, presumably to improve herself. There is something of the same quality about Jerry F.

November, 1979Back to Top
by Our Readers
To the Editor: The September issue contains a number of letters from readers commenting on an article by Samuel McCracken concerning nuclear power [“The Harrisburg Syndrome,” June].

Joseph Heller and Woody Allen
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Pearl K. Bell's review of Joseph Heller's Good as Gold [Fiction, “Heller and Malamud, Then & Now,” June] is one of the finest I have ever read.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: . . . I found Edward N. Luttwak's critique in “Ten Questions about SALT II” [August] not only informative but .

Weber and the Court
by Our Readers
To the Editor: The Weber decision is, I fear, a much more serious defeat for the principle of nondiscrimination than Carl Cohen's generally excellent critique suggests [“Justice Debased: The Weber Decision,” September].

Zimbabwe Rhodesia
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Bayard Rustin's article, “The War Against Zimbabwe” [July], is a reasoned and provocative analysis of a complex issue which has been characterized by much misplaced emotional posturing.

by Bayard Rustin
TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: Bayard Rustin's article, "The War Against Zimbabwe" [July], is a reasoned and provocative analysis of a complex issue which has been characterized by much misplaced emotional posturing.

The Andrew Young Affair
by Carl Gershman
No episode in contemporary American history has been marked by a greater outpouring of animosity against Jews than the events which followed Andrew Young's resignation as United States Ambassador to the United Nations.

Dictatorships & Double Standards
by Jeane Kirkpatrick
The failure of the Carter administration's foreign policy is now clear to everyone except its architects, and even they must entertain private doubts, from time to time, about a policy whose crowning achievement has been to lay the groundwork for a transfer of the Panama Canal from the United States to a swaggering Latin dictator of Castroite bent.

Art vs. the Arts
by Ronald Berman
Ibsen, who was one of the heroes of modernism, endowed it with a passionate belief in artistic sensibility and social purpose.

The Trouble with Reform Judaism
by Julius Weinberg
The last few years have marked the one-hundredth anniversary of the institutional origins of Reform Judaism in the United States: the founding of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations in 1873, of Hebrew Union College in 1875, and of the Central Conference of American Rabbis in 1889.

Solar Energy: A False Hope
by Samuel McCracken
Solar power is the ideal source of energy for the Me Generation: riskless and cheap. Or so it is claimed.

Israelis in Exile
by Seymour Lipset
For a country like Israel, founded and built on the premise of continuing immigration, the rising rate of emigration in recent years has become a matter of serious concern.

Glenn Gould's Dissent
by Samuel Lipman
From the standpoint of originality and imagination, musical performance today is a pretty dull affair. Influenced by the widespread diffusion of music and the easy availability of recordings, recent performers of the most diverse intellectual and cultural backgrounds strive mightily to approach a common standard of accuracy, textual fidelity, and unobjectionable musicality.

Who Gets Ahead, by Christopher Jencks & Others
by Chester Finn,
The System Who Gets Ahead? The Determinants of Economic Success in America. by Christopher Jencks & Others. Basic Books. 397 pp. $17.50. Seven years ago, Christopher Jencks and a team of collaborators published a much-noted and widely discussed book entitled Inequality, which sought to show that equalizing educational opportunity would not do much to equalize the distribution of incomes in American society, since the impact of formal schooling on economic success is slight compared with the effects of family background and what Jencks termed “luck.” Although the analysis was taken by some to justify reduced expenditures for education, the authors meant it, to the contrary, as an argument for radical income redistribution.

Gershom Scholem: Kabbalah and Counter-History, by David Biale
by Hyam Maccoby
A Vision of Judaism Gershom Scholem: Kabbalah and Counter-History. by David Biale. Harvard University Press. 279 pp. $15.00. Many books could be written about the life and works of Gershom Scholem, who is perhaps the greatest Jewish scholar of the century, but David Biale's book happens to be the first devoted to this extraordinary and important figure.

Pat: A Biography of Daniel Patrick Moynihan, by Douglas Schoen
by James
The Senator & the Liberals Pat: A Biography of Daniel Patrick Moynihan. by Douglas Schoen. Harper & Row. 322 pp. $12.95. Through most of this century, the American Left has refused, often with good reason, to take conservatives or their ideas seriously.

The Literary Legacy of C. S. Lewis, by Chad Walsh
by Terry Eastland
Apostle to the Church The Literary Legacy of C. S. Lewis. by Chad Walsh. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. 269 pp. $10.95. In 1933 an obscure thirty-five-year-old Oxford don, whose only works at the time were two books of little noticed poetry, published The Pilgrim's Regress.

The Rabin Memoirs, by Yitzhak Rabin
by Joseph Shattan
America-Israel The Rabin Memoirs. by Yitzhak Rabin. Little, Brown. 344 pp. $12.95. Because its defense is of such crucial importance to the state of Israel, a Defense Minister wields an enormous amount of power in that country, more than any other member of the cabinet apart from the Prime Minister.

December, 1979Back to Top
Rumkowski in Auschwitz
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Michael Checinski's article, “How Rumkowski Died” [May] and his exchange with Tzipora Hager Halivni [Letters from Readers, September], invite a thorough refutation of most of his recollections.

Harvard Law School
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In his article, “'Human Rights' at Harvard Law School” [September], Daniel Benson criticizes Dean Albert Sacks for acquiescing in what amounted to an attempt to abridge my freedom of speech.

Business and the Soviets
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Carl Gershman's article, “Selling Them the Rope: Business & the Soviets” [April], contains several historical inaccuracies: John Calder, whom Mr.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: . . . David Singer's “Living with Intermarriage” [July] treats an extremely complex issue in an overly polemical manner, typified by his use of charged terms such as “accommodationist” to label those of differing opinion.

by Our Readers
To the Editor: In “A New Soviet Strategy” [October], Francis Fukuyama misrepresents an article of mine in the Washington Post (May 13, 1979) analyzing the background of the Communist coup in Afghanistan and the policy options now confronting the United States in South Asia. If I may briefly summarize what I elaborated in 3,000 words, my article made the following major points (the quotations are from the article): The Kabul coup “came about when it did, and in the way that it did” as the tragic culmination of a cycle of challenge and response set in motion by the Shah with U.S.

Kennedy's Foreign Policy: What the Record Shows
by Joshua Muravchik
Senator Edward M. Kennedy has begun his long and eagerly awaited campaign for the Presidency. He is offering himself to the nation as someone who can provide the leadership which many Americans will agree is needed.

Jewish Denial and the Holocaust
by Walter Laqueur
On April 5, 1943, Hershel Johnson, the United States Ambassador to Sweden, sent a cable to Washington in which he reported (on the authority of a former German consular officer) that of the 450,000 Jews in Warsaw, only 50,000 remained.

The Politics of John Paul II
by Michael Novak
There are many grounds for disagreement with some of the statements made by Pope John Paul II during his spectacular visit to the United States in early October, but it is difficult to deny the extraordinary spiritual presence of the man.

Cubans in Arabia?
by Edward Luttwak
When Senator Richard Stone began asking questions about Soviet doings in Cuba during his ten minutes of allowed time on the very first morning of the SALT hearings last July, the staff experts sitting behind the semicircle of Senators of the Foreign Relations Committee exchanged despondent looks; some audibly groaned.

Moscow Night in New York
by Tova Reich
The Russified professor of literature, Marius Bronstein, was the first to arrive, as usual. Irina stood in front of her mirror, a hairpin and a cigarette between her lips, and she kept track of his progress as he stumbled down the stairs from his apartment two floors above and collapsed against the door.

Roth & Baldwin: Coming Home
by Pearl Bell
At the age of forty-six, Philip Roth has relented. He has written a short and touching novel, The Ghost Writer,1 which is remarkably free of the zeal for settling scores that soured so much of his work.

Tory Wit
by Richard Grenier
In early October 1979, while the Pope toured the United States to great acclamation, the number-one film at movie-house box offices all over America was Monte Python's Life of Brian, a British parody of the life of Jesus Christ widely held to be the most blasphemous motion picture ever made.

Restoring the American Dream, by Robert I. Ringer
by William Bennett
The Way It Wasn't Restoring the American Dream. by Robert I. Ringer. QED, Harper & Row. 306 pp. $12.50. Avery great deal of publicity and praise has welcomed Robert Ringer's new book.

A Lion for Love, by Robert Alter with Carol Cosman
by Robert Adams
The Literary Life A Lion for Love: A Critical Biography of Stendhal. by Robert Alter with the collaboration of Carol Cosman. Basic Books.

Radical Dissent in Contemporary Israeli Politics, by David J. Schnall
by Gerald Cromer
Israel's Political Fringe Radical Dissent in Contemporary Israeli Politics. by David J. Schnall. Praeger. 229 pp. $21.95. Israel is engaged in a constant struggle for survival.

Moonstruck, by Allen Tate Wood with Jack Vitek
by Robert Richman
Wanderer Moonstruck: A Memoir of my Life in a Cult. by Allen Tate Wood with Jack Vitek. Morrow. 189 pp. $8.95. Allen Tate WOOD was a member of Sun Myung Moon's cult for about four and one-half years, from 1969 to 1974.

Small Futures, by Richard H. De Lone
by Marc Plattner
Repudiating Liberalism Small Futures. by Richard H. De Lone for the Carnegie Council on Children. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. 258 pp. $12.95. During the course of the 1970's a new political outlook has increasingly come to dominate the political thought of the American Left.

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