France

After Abbottabad: Navy SEALs and American Security
October 19, 2012

What's next for Navy's SEAL Team Six?

The Novel That Frightened Hamas and the Arab League
October 19, 2012

Reading the controversial novels of Algerian writer Boualem Sansal.

Jews, Swedes, and the Shoah, and other films
October 19, 2012

Reviewing new French, Swedish, and Swiss films.

Cohn & Kirn Debate the “Real Romney”
September 19, 2012

Have we finally seen the "real Romney"? Jonathan Cohn and Walter Kirn take to IM to debate

The Square and the Flair
August 02, 2012

BEFORE HE EARNED his reputation as one of the best ad men in politics, before he wrote for several major television shows, and long before he became Mitt Romney’s top campaign strategist, Stuart Stevens found himself in Cameroon, face to face with a machine-gun-wielding soldier looking to shake him down. It was 1988, and a few weeks earlier, Stevens had deposited himself in the nearby Central African Republic to pick up a friend’s Land Rover and drive it back to France. But the trip was a disaster from the get-go. Local officials confiscated the car and refused to release it.

Communication Breakdown
June 24, 2012

I once knew a quiet guy who liked to play soccer because playing, he said, allowed him to communicate without talking. You could see how football communication worked—and how it didn’t—in the Spain-France game. The Spaniards kept chattering, boring everyone who was not in on their tiki-taka lingo, laughing at their own jokes, confident that there would be no interruption coming from the French.

Happy Birthday to Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Why the World’s First Celebrity Intellectual Still Matters
June 22, 2012

He was a man who claimed to have abandoned all five of his children, as newborns, at the door of an orphanage. He broke with nearly every friend he ever made, including some who sacrificed dearly for him, denouncing them in the most hateful and vitriolic terms. He wrote that law-breakers deserved to be treated as rebels and traitors.

On Reflection...
June 14, 2012

The only good thing I’ve ever heard about Dr. Joseph Goebbels is that he reportedly banned the publication of “overnight notices” in German newspapers, that is, reviews of operas, plays or concerts written immediately after the performance for the next morning’s paper. Most of of us think clearer after we have slept on it, and my instant response to France vs. England three days ago didn’t give the French their due.  It was also, if anything, too generous to England.

A Polish New Left
June 07, 2012

Across much of Europe, the economic crisis and dread of Islamic immigrants has boosted the fortunes of the populist right. In France, the National Front candidate won almost a fifth of the popular vote in the first round of the presidential elections this spring. Parties that preach fear and loathing of cultural tolerance are part of the governing coalition in both the Netherlands and Hungary. But, over the past decade, a cosmopolitan populist movement on the left has been steadily growing in what may seem a rather unlikely place: Poland.

The Alibi of Ambiguity
June 07, 2012

Unlikely Collaboration: Gertrude Stein, Bernard Faÿ, and the Vichy DilemmaBy Barbara Will (Columbia University Press, 274 pp., $35)   IdaBy Gertrude Stein Edited by Logan Esdale (Yale University Press, 348 pp., $20)   Stanzas in Meditation: The Corrected EditionBy Gertrude Stein Edited by Susannah Hollister and Emily Setina (Yale University Press, 379 pp., $22) ON SEPTEMBER 29, 1951, an oddly dressed young woman appeared in an alley adjacent to the municipal hospital in Angers, a town southwest of Paris.

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