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Our Basest Desires: The Cruel Chaos Of Revolution

Robert Stone's characters fall all over the moral spectrum, but between a revolutionary nun, a treacherous spy and an alienated anthropologist, they certainly make for good reading. Author Roland Merullo recommends Stone's A Flag for Sunrise, a rich depiction of Central America in the turbulent '70s.
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In Taseer's 'Noon', Fictional Violence Is All Too Real

In the span of less than a year, Aatish Taseer's father was killed and his brother was kidnapped. Taseer writes about a violent and turbulent Pakistan in his new novel, Noon. "There's a general sense of a society disintegrating," he says.
NPR

No Respect For The Women On The Sidelines

In TV, football sideline reporters are often women. But commentator Frank Deford wonders why they aren't up in the booth, calling the game.
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Hounded By Grief Over A Canine Companion

To its family, a beloved dog is always more — more than a wagging tail, more than a living garbage disposal, more than an ear to scratch. Commentator Annmarie Kelly-Harbaugh mourns the loss of her Hound and his unconditional adoration.
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'The Swerve': Ideas That Rooted The Renaissance

Stephen Greenblatt chronicles the unlikely discovery of Lucretius' poem "On the Nature of Things" — by a 15th-century Italian book hunter. The Swerve is a masterfully written meditation on the fragile inheritance of ideas.
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Fall TV: Nostalgia For The Glamorous 1960s Needs A Tune-Up

Eric Deggans looks at two new shows celebrating the Mad Men era in two very different settings: in the Playboy Clubs, and in the air.
NPR

With Premiere Week Upon Us, We Want To Ask Why

Variety TV editor Andrew Wallenstein argues that there's no longer much reason — other than inertia — for the networks to pile up their series premieres in the fall.
NPR

Op-Ed: Time For US To Recognize A New Middle East

The president of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, plans to take the issue of Palestinian statehood to the United Nations Security Council on Friday. The US plans to veto the application. Professor Rashid Khalidi argues it's time for the US to step back and adapt to a new Middle East.

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