The Incoherence of Antonin Scalia
August 24, 2012

America's most prominent conservative judge offers a blistering assessment of the Supreme Court's most outspoken conservative justice.

The Immorality of “Hunger Games”
April 30, 2012

I’ve been struggling to understand why it is that I found The Hunger Games, which I saw last week with my teenage daughter, morally repugnant. The movie, like the young adult novel by Suzanne Collins that it’s based on (which I didn’t read), invites us to imagine a regime so brutal that it annually selects by lottery one child from each of the country’s 12 districts and pits them against one another in a televised gladiatorial combat to the death. Only one participant may survive.

Unhappy Endings
February 19, 2007

THOMAS HARDY  By Claire Tomalin (Penguin Press, 486 pp., $35) Thomas Hardy's life could have made a novel: a poor provincial boy rises to unthinkable eminence by dint of talent and sheer hardwork, overcoming every obstacle placed in his way. But people havestopped writing novels like that, and one of the reasons is Thomas Hardy. Hardy changed his life by changing the way novels werewritten, discarding their familiar patterns and their reflexive optimism.