Author Archive

Algis Valiunas

Algis Valiunas

Goebbels: A Biography By Peter Longerich Random House, 906 pages The word propaganda has come to represent politics at its most corrupt. Although the term originated with Pope...

“To live your life is not as simple as to cross a field.” Even in English this line sounds Russian. It is in fact one...

Doris Kearns Goodwin knows how to pick winners, the perennial favorites with a significant part of the American public: Lyndon Johnson, the Kennedy family, Franklin...

On July 30, 1815, John Adams wrote to Thomas Jefferson: “Who shall write the history of the American revolution? Who can write it? Who will...

America has never produced a Schubert or a Schumann, but we do have the Great American Songbook, which has been called our classical music. The...

Satisfaction Not Guaranteed:Dilemmas of Progress in Modern SocietyBy Peter N. StearnsNew York University Press, 279 pages As citizens of a country whose founders enshrined the pursuit...

What do readers expect of cultural critics, and what do critics demand of themselves and the culture they write about? In “The Function of Criticism...

One hundred fifty years ago, on April 12, 1861, Confederate batteries opened fire on Fort Sumter, the Union garrison just off the coast of Charleston,...

The modern essay began with Michel de Montaigne (1533–1592), a member of the minor French nobility, a Bordeaux vintner, a political official pretty much in...

Cities are the places to be for those who crave wealth, renown, intellectual companionship, choice food and drink, splendid art, high conviviality, sex any way...

Americans have always believed that they have a new and unique wisdom to impart to the world, and while some would name Benjamin Franklin as...

Most every man in the known world has at least glimpsed a Playboy centerfold, and thereupon has vowed to go out and get himself something...