Is It Racist To Root Against Memphis?
April 07, 2008

I'm usually a sucker for race-based arguments about college basketball.

Who's Your Daddy?; The masculine mystique of Fred Thompson.
July 23, 2007

  Thwack! An elaborately beaded elephant handbag lands solidly on Fred Thompson's upper arm. "Law and Order on the Border!" the bag's owner, a short, sassy, middle-aged brunette, crows at the presumed presidential candidate.

What God Owes Jefferson
May 23, 2005

God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It By Jim Wallis (HarperSanFrancisco, 384 pp., $24.95) Taking Faith Seriously Edited by Mary Jo Bane, Brent Coffin, and Richard Higgins (Harvard University Press, 381 pp., $29.95) The phenomenon of martyrdom demonstrates that political success and personal salvation do not generally go together. The faithful find grace not in building winning coalitions, but in worshipping God's glory. Gazing toward heaven means stumbling on earth, a small price to pay for the rewards that await. For a deeply religious society, the Unit

Love in Vain
June 07, 2004

Escaping the Delta: Robert Johnson and the Invention of the Blues By Elijah Wald (Amistad, 342 pp., $24.95) Robert Johnson: Lost and Found By Barry Lee Pearson and Bill McCulloch (University of Illinois Press, 142 pp., $24.95) Martin Scorcese Presents the Blues: A Musical Journey Edited by Peter Guralnick, Robert Santelli, Holly George-Warren, Christopher John Farley (Amistad, 287 pp., $27.95)   The legend is known to any blues fan: he was an eager kid sitting at the feet of his musical idols, borrowing the guitar he could scarcely play and generally making a nuisance of himself.

American Gothic
August 12, 1991

How the eclectic hodgepodge saved Modernism.

Life in the Stone Age
January 14, 1991

Louis Menand: Checks, drugs, and rock 'n' roll.

When Challenger Fell From The Sky
February 17, 1986

With an immediate concern for the feelings of the pupils in his charge, Mr. Charles Foley, the principal of Concord High School, asked the students to return to their classrooms and the reporters and cameramen to leave the building. In that local and exact response, he distinguished himself from the hollow emotions that television tried to arouse in the American people from the moment Challenger exploded and fell from the sky. For a nation, rightly, a president speaks. Like presidents before him at such moments, President Reagan was adequate to the occasion and humble in his address.

How Ted Got Drafted
October 06, 1979

The groups behind Ted Kennedy's 1980 presidential primary challenge.

"What Shall Become of His Dreams?"
January 01, 1970

This piece was originally published on August 24, 1968. William Faulkner located Mulberry Street so precisely and described its major industry so vividly in one of his early novels that lustful visitors from the rural mid-South memorized the passage and used it as their guide to the rows of dingy houses where three-dollar whores did business until the military authorities forced the city to clean up the neighborhood during World War II. Before virtue was imposed, white customers had access to white girls and black girls-in different houses, of course.