Before The Law,
Jennifer Gonnerman, writing for The New Yorker
, tells the story of Kalief Browder, who
was unjustly accused of taking a backpack. He spent the next three years on Rikers Island before the charges were dismissed.
The Solace of Oblivion by Jeffrey Toobin [The New Yorker]
"In Europe, the right to be forgotten trumps the Internet."
How Long Does It Take to Get to Tatooine? [The New Yorker]
"We use much more brainpower on subjects that interest us."
, a short New Yorker video (11:30) about the military origins of the vocoder. The vocoder—the musical instrument that gave Kraftwerk its robotic sound—began as an early telecommunications device and a top-secret military encoding machine.
The Perfect Beat
is an article by The New Yorker's music critic Sasha Frere Jones where he lays out the reasoning behind his "Perfect Recordings" project, essentially a list of 200 songs that fit his personal criteria for perfection. The lists are available as Twitter timelines (volumes 1
), Spotify playlists (volumes 1
) or as one 200 song Rdio playlist
. Frere-Jones answered some questions about the project
and spoke about a few individual songs in The Guardian.
In China, there are now more than 200 Waldorf elementary schools
, filled with the children whose parents are looking for a more child-centered alternative to the test-driven state education system
. Why can't Chinese schools be more like American schools? Meanwhile, in America, Stephen Pinker argues that Harvard and other elite universities are wasting their resources on athletes and musicians, and should select students by standardized test scores
, the way Chinese colleges do. Why can't American schools be more like Chinese schools?
Why Walking Helps Us Think: [The New Yorker]
In a variety of ways, going for a stroll keeps our brains on their toes.
Staten Island’s Pill Problem: [The New Yorker]
"New York City is the heroin capital of the country, and the epidemic has hit its most tranquil borough the hardest."
"But not doing things too disastrously is not some minimal achievement; it is a maximal achievement, rarely managed." Does it help to know history?
A profile of classicist Mary Beard, and, among other things, her decision to confront sexist detractors online.
"The real issue, she suggested, is not merely guaranteeing a woman’s right to speak; it is being aware of the prejudices that we bring to the way we hear her. Listening, she implied, is an essential element of speech."
A Memoir Is Not a Status Update by Dani Shapiro [The New Yorker]
"What would have become of me if I had come of age as a writer during these years of living out loud?"
[...] others resist sleep and embrace the woozy, out-of-body license.
To some, this is an opportunity to take part in what Rachel Uchitel, a former girlfriend of Tiger Woods, has reportedly described as “crazy Ambien sex.” [more inside]
ine: A life in piano lessons. [SLNewYorker]
"Woolf often conceives of life this way: as a gift that you've been given,
which you must hold onto and treasure but never open. Opening it would dispel the atmosphere, ruin the radiance—and the radiance of life is what makes it worth living. It's hard to say just what holding onto life without looking at it might mean; that's one of the puzzles of her books. But it has something to do with preserving life's mystery…" Virginia Woolf's Idea of Privacy
“My skin is black,” the first woman’s story begins, “my arms are long.” And, to a slow and steady beat, “my hair is woolly, my back is strong.” Singing in a club in Holland, in 1965, Nina Simone introduced a song she had written about what she called “four Negro women” to a young, homogeneously white, and transfixed crowd. “And one of the women’s hair,” she instructed, brushing her hand lightly across her own woolly Afro, “is like mine.”
On July 31st the New Yorker posted on Shouts and Murmurs: "Sonny Rollins: In His Own Words
BY DJANGO GOLD". Plenty of people
were not pleased
. Including, yes, Sonny Rollins himself.
(The editor's note on Shouts and Murmurs was added afterwards and was not part of the initial publishing of the piece)
From behind the New Yorker's temporarily removed paywall, a postmodern murder mystery
from Poland in 2007.
A Church Divided Over Marriage Equality
The Church’s rules against homosexuality have divided Methodists for forty years. Attempts to abolish or even soften these rules have failed at every General Conference, the quadrennial meeting of the denomination, since they were first added, in 1972, to the Book of Discipline, which contains the Church’s laws and doctrine.
"And They Will Know We Are Christians by Our Love
"Methodists should call meeting on gay divide, pastor says
"Ranks of defiant United Methodist clergy rise
"Defrocking of Minister Widens Split Over Gays
And the bartender's, like, "No kidding. You think I wished for a twelve-inch pianist
?" So the guy processes this.
(SLNewYorker) [more inside]
Today, The New Yorker
announces a redesign, temporary free access to their archives for all web visitors, and a soon-to-be implemented paywall
, modelled on that of The New York Times
The New Yorker website--which now publishes 15 original stories a day--has been steadily expanding their offerings (and increasing their traffic) under online editor Nicholas Thompson. Perhaps TNY seeks to finally answer the question: what's an old magazine to do on the internet? Capital NY digs into the history of the relaunch
and how striving for timeliness on the web may affect the publication.
that a remaining problem is Andy Borowitz
, whose vague satire accounted for 6% of traffic to the website last year.
"His work is rooted in the power of collaboration within systems: instructions, rules, and self-imposed limits. His methods are a rebuke to the assumption that a project can be powered by one person’s intent, or that intent is even worth worrying about. To this end, Eno has come up with words like “scenius,” which describes the power generated by a group of artists who gather in one place at one time. (“Genius is individual, scenius is communal,” Eno told the Guardian, in 2010.) It suggests that the quality of works produced in a certain time and place is more indebted to the friction between the people on hand than to the work of any single artist." The New Yorker'
s Sasha Frere-Jones on Brian Eno's career and new album High Life.
, one of the great cartoonists, passed away. Charlie drew close to fourteen hundred cartoons for The New Yorker over the years, beginning in the nineteen-sixties and continuing right through last week’s issue
Many more here
What the gospel of innovation gets wrong.
The championing of "disruption" in modern business is built around some very flaky research that does not bear out its sweeping conconclusions.
This week sees the publication of the third volume of “My Struggle,” the thirty-six-hundred-page autobiographical novel by Karl Ove Knausgaard, the Norwegian novelist.
It’s hard to overstate the strangeness of the book’s success. The six volumes of “My Struggle” chronicle, in hypnotic detail, episodes from Knausgaard’s life. There is no plot to speak of, unless you consider real life a plot. [more inside]
The Teen Whisperer by Margaret Talbot [New Yorker]
How the author [John Green] of “The Fault in Our Stars” built an ardent army of fans.
The Mystery of Go, the Ancient Game That Computers Still Can’t Win
The challenge is daunting. In 1994, machines took the checkers crown, when a program called Chinook beat the top human. Then, three years later, they topped the chess world, IBM’s Deep Blue supercomputer besting world champion Garry Kasparov. Now, computers match or surpass top humans in a wide variety of games: Othello, Scrabble, backgammon, poker, even Jeopardy. But not Go. It’s the one classic game where wetware still dominates hardware. [more inside]
We were in the stage where we couldn’t make serious eye contact for fear of implying we were too invested. We used euphemisms like “I miss you” and “I like you” and smiled every time our noses got too close. [more inside]
How do you cram a bunch of strangers into an airborne metal tube, charge them a lot of money for the privilege, and get them to rave about it? Hire people like James Park
to attract the one percent. [more inside]
When Christie was fourteen years old, he heard [now former NJ Governor Thomas] Kean, who was then a member of the state legislature, speak at his junior high school. He told his mother that he wanted to become a politician; she drove him to Kean’s house and told him to knock on the legislator’s door. “Sir, I heard you speak,” he told Kean. “I think I want to get into politics. How do I do it?”
Writing for The New Yorker, Ryan Lizza provides an account
of Chris Christie's political history from start to Bridgegate.
If you're going to read one piece on fictional, passive aggressive banking services make it Kelly Stout's
" [more inside]
Adam Lanza's father, Peter Lanza, speaks with the New Yorker
, his first interview since the Sandy Hook shootings.
"Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?"
an upcoming graphic memoir from Roz Chast
is excerpted in the New Yorker online.
The New Yorker
profiles Klaus Teuber: The Man Who Built Catan
"Why am I not constantly grieving?"
The wonderful Roger Angell
on love, loss, sex, death, time, and the view from age 94.
Simon Parkin writes 1600 words for The New Yorker online
about The Far Lands or Bust!
, an ongoing effort to walk to the end of a world in Minecraft. [via Boing Boing] [more inside]
This past October, just before the leaves changed, I went on a six-day hike through the mountains of Wakayama, in central Japan, tracing the path of an ancient imperial pilgrimage called the Kumano Kodo. I took along a powerful camera, believing, as I always have, that it would be an indispensable creative tool. But I returned with the unshakeable feeling that I’m done with cameras, and that most of us are, if we weren’t already.
Author and designer Craig Mod
asks if we're seeing the end of the non-networked, standalone camera
How well does this test of regional slang reveal where you’re from? Answer the questions below to find out.
Can plants think?
Michael Pollan asks the question. (SLNewYorker)