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LRB Blog
May 19, 2009 5:09 PM   Subscribe

The London Review of Books, the most politically radical of the high-end literary review magazines, now has a blog. It is being updated two or three times a day with pretty substantial posts by the LRB's regular stable of swanky essayists: Diski on the parliamentary expenses scandal, O'Hagan on Michael Savage, and lots and lots from Thomas Jones, who seems to be in charge.
posted by stammer (31 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite

 
Jenny Diski (first link) isn't MeFi's own anymore -- she actually did join us briefly, but left in a rather large huff shortly thereafter. Kind of a shame, that.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:12 PM on May 19, 2009


Part of the excitement for me is that Diski has returned to blogging, after the Metafilter argument apparently made her give up on her old, very good blog.
posted by stammer at 5:14 PM on May 19, 2009


Oh wow, I didn't realize Diski left, I was wondering where she went. I love the LRB, now they have a blog in super-simple style. What more can I ask for? Will this replace 3quarksdaily on the top of my intellectual blog roll? Only time will tell.
posted by geoff. at 5:25 PM on May 19, 2009


Thanks to MeFi, specifically this post, I subscribed to the print version of the LRB.

And also, incidentally, to the New York Review of Books, the Times Literary Supplement, Lapham's Quarterly, the Literary Review and the Australian version of The Week.

I feel ambivalent towards blogs in general, but I'll certainly check this one out.

Thank you, again, MetaFilter for feeding my brain.
posted by Mephisto at 5:48 PM on May 19, 2009 [1 favorite]


Looks interesting—thanks!
posted by languagehat at 6:06 PM on May 19, 2009


Much as I love the LRB, I let my subscription lapse because I don't seem to have time to actually read it. (Curse you, all you distractions of the internet!)

So, thanks for this - at least I can keep in touch with the LRB-universe....
posted by AsYouKnow Bob at 6:11 PM on May 19, 2009


Mephisto: "the New York Review of Books"

I'm smart enough to read The New Yorker. But I'm not usually smart enough to read The New York Review of Books.

My hat is off to you.
posted by Joe Beese at 6:55 PM on May 19, 2009


she actually did join us briefly, but left in a rather large huff shortly thereafter.

Link, anyone?
posted by jayder at 7:14 PM on May 19, 2009


jayder: try this.
posted by hangashore at 7:27 PM on May 19, 2009


Nice, thanks for the heads up. I agree with Beezer on the Nosepicking though, terrible ending.
posted by tellurian at 7:36 PM on May 19, 2009


Oh! and thank goodness Little River Band haven't started a blog.
posted by tellurian at 7:42 PM on May 19, 2009 [1 favorite]


Thanks to Jenni Diski and LRB I found Metafilter.
posted by ginky at 7:49 PM on May 19, 2009 [2 favorites]


Diski on sleep.
posted by homunculus at 8:28 PM on May 19, 2009


Joe Beese: "Mephisto: "I'm smart enough to read The New Yorker. But I'm not usually smart enough to read The New York Review of Books."

I humbly skip over those Middle East politics essays and obscure 1950's poetry collection reviews and museum exhibition reviews. There's enough in each issue - plus the full-spread advertisements..
posted by stbalbach at 9:22 PM on May 19, 2009


... and the personal ads.
posted by lukemeister at 9:39 PM on May 19, 2009


They always have copies of the LRB at the LRB cakeshop which is how I usually read it.
I never miss the personal ads - so clever and funny.
posted by vacapinta at 12:13 AM on May 20, 2009


Looks decent, although material's a bit skinny yet.

I never miss the personal ads

Yep, some funny stuff there.
posted by Wolof at 12:40 AM on May 20, 2009


I know it came first but I really don't like the NYRB as much as the LRB. Maybe it's just a Canadian reaction to yet more American content (as if I don't get enough already, on the internets or otherwise), but I like receiving a slightly different perspective on things.
posted by maledictory at 1:16 AM on May 20, 2009


Perry Anderson, who contributes to both the NYRB and the LRB, makes some interesting comparisons between the two (gbooks - one page missing).

I like them both, but there's no doubt the NYRB is a more establishment read.
posted by GeorgeBickham at 1:54 AM on May 20, 2009


I never miss the personal ads - so clever and funny.

My all-time favourite simply read "Poof." And gave a box number.
posted by GeorgeBickham at 1:56 AM on May 20, 2009 [2 favorites]


This is strange. After my last post, my wife and I decided to go to the LRB cafe - its about a block from where we live. As we were coming out, we almost ran directly into Tim Burton! My wife recognized him and he suddenly crossed the street (to avoid us?) where he almost got hit by a bicyclist. I dont usually do celebrity sightings but I just had to share this....
posted by vacapinta at 3:00 AM on May 20, 2009


I subscribe to the NYRB and the LRB - I don't consider either "radical" - they present a left leaning view of politics what is always well-reasoned.
Arlen Specter wrote an article for the NYRB right before he switched parties.
Tony Judt is one of the sanest voices on Israeli-Palestinian problems even though the Settle movement has tried to portray him as a fringe thinker and has orchestrated a campaign against letting him speak.
In the LRB John Mearsheimer also speaks truths about Israel that many in government and in general want to overlook.
These are not radical views - It shows how far right that the UK and US have moved when these are considered "radical" ideas. The pox that Reagan and Thatcher began continues to poison political discourse.
posted by hooptycritter at 3:58 AM on May 20, 2009 [1 favorite]


see also immanent frame for intelligent, pretentious, but highly interesting academic/radical insight from an established organ.
posted by yonation at 9:45 AM on May 20, 2009


Thanks for posting this. I'm a lapsed subscriber to the LRB too and hadn't noticed the creation of a blog.
posted by Lezzles at 11:12 AM on May 20, 2009


I don't consider either "radical"

Me either.

The pox that Reagan and Thatcher began

Actually it probably began with Nixon and Goldwater (the era these magazines were started), although Reagan and Thatcher took it to new levels of popularity.
posted by stbalbach at 12:29 PM on May 20, 2009


These are not radical views - It shows how far right that the UK and US have moved when these are considered "radical" ideas. The pox that Reagan and Thatcher began continues to poison political discourse.

I get what you're saying, and I agree about the NYRB, but a big percentage of the LRB's regular contributors are Marxists or something close, many of them also heavily involved in the New Left Review: Perry Anderson, Patrick Cockburn, Zizek, Eagleton, Robin Blackburn, Tom Nairn, etc. The LRB isn't a campaigning publication or anything, but it's weighted very strongly towards contributors from the far left compared to otherwise similar magazines. This is a big part of its self-image and is pretty clearly reflected in its advertising, for example, which apparently works on the assumption that, in an ideal world, the LRB, New Left Review, and Radical Philosophy would have coterminous readerships.
posted by stammer at 3:20 PM on May 20, 2009


Stammer,
Funny how people do not label The National Review far right. And even The New Republic is much further right than the center but folks try to act like it is middle of the road.
Perry Anderson, Patrick Cockburn, Zizek, Eagleton, Robin Blackburn, Tom Nairn, etc are not pushing for specific policies. However you see radical policies of Confimrative action of rich white folks and their narrow intersts promoted zealously in the National Review, Tikkun, Commentary, The American Spectator, etc but again people never comment on the far right political philosophy that drives all these publications.
I am tired left-leaning intellectuals being labeled fringe but fringe far rightists are treated as objective thinkers. These rightists objectively chose war, bankrupted the developed world and care only for their own select members so why not call their views RADICAL?
posted by hooptycritter at 3:58 PM on May 20, 2009


stblabach - agreed. \
Johnson's push of the Civil Rights Act set the far right machine in high gear. Republican Eisenhower warned of the dangers of the military industrial complex.
posted by hooptycritter at 4:00 PM on May 20, 2009


I am tired left-leaning intellectuals being labeled fringe but fringe far rightists are treated as objective thinkers.

I wouldn't say "fringe", but I would label them "radical", which I think is reasonable, because all the people I mentioned are Marxists and revolutionary socialists (except maybe Cockburn, who I'm not sure about). I think they would describe themselves as radical and would probably cringe a little to hear people calling them "left-leaning". Again, I think radicals are much better represented in the LRB than in the NYRB, which is very much establishment liberal, hence the wording of my post!
posted by stammer at 4:20 PM on May 20, 2009


> I'm smart enough to read The New Yorker. But I'm not usually smart enough to
> read The New York Review of Books.

It's certainly a bit more "high brow" (if you will) than say the Times Literary Supplement. Someone here on MeFi once said that they preferred the TLS over the LRB (and therefore by implication the NYRB too) because the TLS was "more about the books". I thought that was an interesting and insightful comment.

What I like about the NYRB and LRB is that you often learn a great deal from their articles. It almost seems that in some circumstances the books are simply an excuse to discourse on a particular topic.

Like AsYouKnow Bob, I find it hard to get through them all though. Especially since I've got the LRB, the NYRB and the TLS (which is weekly!) coming through every few days; plus the Week and the National Geographic magazine! At the moment I have five unopened editions of the various magazines lying beside my favourite seat on the coach. Couple that to two young girls who just demand attention ("Right now Daddy! Be a dinosaur right now!!!"), and it's true that I find it hard to secretly grab those few quiet moments when I can sit, read, think and enjoy my cup of tea. I tend to fall asleep on the coach more often than not, if truth be told...
posted by Mephisto at 5:41 PM on May 20, 2009


stammer,
Marxist analysis and Marxist ideology are very different things. You are conflating the two. And is Marxism more radical than neoCon applications of capitalism? Adam Smith would be appalled at the cut throat ideologies advanced under his name.
American are so obsessed with ersatz and anachronistic Cold War labeling and Marxism is the label used to dismiss thinkers as nutters.
posted by hooptycritter at 7:30 PM on May 20, 2009


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