Tag: Censorship

Retrofitting Totalitarianism

No sooner did the Western media learn to think of Vladimir Putin as an authoritarian ruler than the Russian regime changed again. Since Putin returned to the office of president in March 2012, Russia has experienced ...

Breaking Down Walls at the Havana Biennial

The Malecón, Havana’s five miles of curving, spray-soaked seawall and esplanade, is both magnificent and intimate. Since the early 20th century, it has been the site for evening promenades, a meeting ...

Pornography Porn

In the fall of 1990, at the beginning of my senior year of college, I became obsessed with pornography—or, rather, I became obsessed with the feminist debates about it. From the late 1970s until the ...

The Price of Great Art

When someone who made good art is accused of being a Bad Mother, can she ever be remembered as anything but a Bad Mother? In 1992, Mann’s book Immediate Family tapped into collective anxiety ...

Stop Hyping Academic Freedom

Universities may be among the oldest of our institutions, but they have changed significantly during the millennium or so since they were established. Roughly speaking, the history of the European ...

Famine Fiction

Betraying friends. Trading sex for food. Devouring human flesh. All of these occurred during the famine that followed China’s Great Leap Forward (1958–1961), and all of them ...

Rotten Love

In the mid-1940s Fritz Lang made two films in quick succession, both starring the same trio of actors: Edward G. Robinson, Dan Duryea, and Joan Bennett. The first of these works has the more notable ...

China, Middlebrow to Highbrow

Fiction has more than one way of distancing itself from the real. In most cases this distance serves as a prelude to a future homecoming. The story, like some interstellar traveler, flings itself ...