Would Rabbit Angstrom Vote For Trump?

Harry “Rabbit” Angstrom, a former high school basketball star with a spiritual yearning and an outsized libido, may be both John Updike’s most famous and most despised literary character. But Rabbit is also something of a George Babbit for ...

Agrarian Fireworks

If you’re like me, holidays leave you feeling unusually contemplative, I suppose because the everyone-is-doing-it mentality awakens in us the long-slumbering cultural anthropologist. Holidays cause me to wonder why, exactly, we do what we d...

Who Are Public Monuments For?

History is a lie. Or, rather, a complex galaxy of truths, half-truths, exaggerations, and downplayings that together form a narrative. We don’t write histories because we want to record what really happened; we write them in order to provid...

Gene, Everlasting (1932–2016)

For some time, I saw Gene Logsdon as a wiry bearded fellow in slouch hat and knee boots, striding purposefully across a field he was sowing by hand. That was the picture at the top of his stationary, a piece of line art called “The Co...

The Day the Improbable Happened

In 2014, I was in Glasgow for the Scottish referendum. I had spent the day before the referendum out and about in Glasgow and the “Yes” for independence vote was out in force, and as such I got a very different impression about which way th...

Maintenant, ça suffit

I’ve been out of Paris for a week now, and apart from a brief stop there on my way to London to watch the Brexit vote unfold, I will be out of my adopted home for another week still.  I continue to be bemused that such a generally kin...

Ten Theses on Our Populist Moment

[Cross-posted to In Medias Res] Tomorrow, with the California Democratic primary, the populist developments that so many have observed in this electoral cycle will definitively change. Either Sanders will prevail strongly over Secretary Cli...