The Saturday Essay

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    School’s Out Forever

    The Saturday Essay: Parents are supposed to suffer from profound melancholy once the children have moved away. Not Joe Queenan, who’s overjoyed that he never, ever has to think about school again.

From Review

From Leisure & Arts

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    Modernity’s False Messiah

    The American who cheers every scientific advance is not unlike an ISIS recruit.Both believe history has a meaningful direction.

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    Mastering the Art of Problem Solving

    To get to the unknown unknowns, bring in renegades unafraid to challenge prevailing ideas and establishment traditionalists.

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    Silicon Valley’s Lawmaker

    What became Moore’s law first emerged in a 1965 article modestly titled ‘Cramming More Components Onto Integrated Circuits.’

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    The Perils of Befriending an Octopus

    An octopus may recognize a favored human and even let itself be petted like a cat.

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    Worst. Days. Ever.

    If you think Congress is awful today, let Michael Farquhar remind you of the caning of Sen. Charles Sumner before the Civil War.

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    Bringing Mammoths Back From the Dead

    Editing ancient DNA sequences into an Asian elephant genome might produce a “mammoth.”

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    Be Like Archimedes

    Insights can seem to appear spontaneously, but fully formed. No wonder the ancients spoke of muses.

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    The Glory of Greece

    Competition among self-governing city-states led to specialization, innovation and cooperation.

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    The Front Line of the New Cold War

    World-changing figures from northern Europe find scant place in most histories of the continent.

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    Sir, I Challenge You to a Duel

    An Italian duelist with his dying breath confessed he had never read the poet on whose behalf he had fought.

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    From Founders to Framers

    The Framers far exceeded the convention’s mandate; they devised an entirely new system of government.

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    FDR’s Team of Rivals

    Roosevelt’s commanders spent as much time fighting with one another as they did fighting the Axis.

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    Confessions of a Brain Surgeon

    Just as he was celebrating a successful surgery, Henry Marsh nicked an artery and the patient slipped into a coma.

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    The Best New Mysteries

    Tom Nolan on “The Fatal Flame” by Lyndsay Faye and “Compulsion” by Meyer Levin.

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    How to Make a Fortune in America

    Lawmakers erupted when a Facebook co-founder renounced his U.S. citizenship to avoid millions in tax.

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    Before ‘Fifty Shades’ There Was ‘Peyton Place’

    The town of Peyton Place is a cesspit of gossip and malevolence, ruled by men.

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    The Best New Children’s Books

    Meghan Cox Gurdon on a tale of one child’s journey and struggle to survive when his world falls apart.

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    Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, You Are Blue

    George Eliot was right: “Marriage must be a relationship either of sympathy or conquest.”

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    Abstract Expressionism’s Joan of Arc

    Grace Hartigan battled with every canvas: “I beat it up and it beats back.”

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    Broadway’s Best Year

    The 1963-4 season featured “Hello, Dolly!,” “Funny Girl” and “Barefoot in the Park.”

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    What’s On Willie Nelson’s Mind

    Willie sometimes wonders: Did I really write these songs, or am I just a channel chosen by the Holy Spirit?

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    The Best New Sci-Fi

    Tom Shippey on “Seveneves” by Neal Stephenson and “Collected Fiction” by Hannu Rajaniemi.

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    Fly Fishing the Rockies

    The region was sold as a pristine trout-fishing destination only after native populations were decimated.

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    Saddam Hussein Loved Doritos

    In prison, the dictator became hooked on Doritos. He’d devour a family-size bag in just 10 minutes.

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    Hollywood’s Wild Man

    A World War I flyboy, William Wellman became the pre-eminent portrayer of soldiering’s quiet valor.

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    This White Man Can Jump

    A 30-something reporter tries to learn to dunk.

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    Five Best: Sheila Hancock

    The actress and author of “Miss Carter’s War” recommends her favorite novels about outsiders.

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    Africa: Made in China

    Historians seeking to understand our planet in this century should start with the first China-Africa cooperation meeting in 2000.

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    ‘China’s Coming War With Asia’ by Jonathan Holslag

    The Communist Party’s major aspirations have set it on a collision course with China’s neighbors.

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    FIFA’s Overdue Day of Reckoning

    For decades, the sumptuous taste and suspected abuses inside FIFA, soccer’s governing body, have been an exasperating global punch line. Now a ref has stepped in.

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