ReasonLeitura de 2 mins
Toni Morrison’s Pulitzer Prize–winning 1987 novel, Beloved, is a ghost story that forces readers to confront America’s legacy of slavery— of racism, subjugation, and murder—and consider how it still haunts us today. One Virginia mother’s quixotic bid
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsGender Studies
When Harry Became Sally
I was worried I wouldn’t be able to stomach When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment, Ryan T. Anderson’s 2018 book on gender identity in modern America. Anderson is a Catholic pundit who made a name for himself opposing same-sex
ReasonLeitura de 5 mins
After Uvalde, Irrelevant Gun Control Proposals
THE HORRIFYING MAY 24 massacre at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, which killed 19 children and two adults, happened just 10 days after a gunman murdered 10 people at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York. Both crimes predictably prompted politici
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Romeo and Juliet
In ninth grade, like high school freshmen all over America, I was assigned Romeo and Juliet to read for my English class. As a longtime lit erature geek even at the age of 14, I was thrilled to be entering the big leagues. We’d read some Charles Dick
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The Adventures Of Ook And Gluk: Kung-Fu Cavemen From The Future
Dav Pilkey has been on the New York Times children’s bestsellers list for almost 300 consecutive weeks. Thanks to the power of potty humor, his beloved character Captain Underpants has converted most of the young boys in my life—and a not-insignifica
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The Satanic Verses
The fallout from Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses (1988) was even more bizarre and terrifying than the novel’s opening sequence, in which a hijacked plane flying from India to Britain explodes over the English Channel and the two protagonists, Gib
ReasonLeitura de 5 minsPolitical Ideologies
A New History of the Old Right
UNLIKE MOST ACCOUNTS of the American conservative movement, Matthew Continetti’s The Right begins in the 1920s, when two Republican presidents returned the country to normalcy after World War I. The ideals of that era’s Republicans were not so differ
ReasonLeitura de 3 minsCrime & Violence
Unenumerated Rights And Roe V. Wade
A LEAKED DRAFT of a majority opinion published in May indicated that the Supreme Court would soon overturn two key precedents securing a woman’s constitutional right to terminate a pregnancy. Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson W
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Who Controls What Books You Can Read?
SOMEONE GAVE MARGARET Atwood a flamethrower. The gray-haired author has become a patron saint for a certain kind of dystopian apocalypticism. No protest is complete these days without at least a few women in the red robes and white bonnets of The Han
ReasonLeitura de 2 mins
To Kill a Mockingbird
People have been trying to ban Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird since the 1960s. And since the 1960s, they have largely failed. In one early instance, the school board of Virginia’s Hanover County unanimously voted in 1966 to remove the book after
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This year the school board in McMinn County, Tennessee, voted unanimously to remove cartoonist Art Spiegelman’s Pulitzer Prize–winning memoir Maus from the school curriculum. The book had been assigned in an eighth-grade module covering the Holocaust
ReasonLeitura de 6 mins
Little Libraries, Free at Last?
IN OCTOBER 2020, Tina Musich erected a small wooden box with a slanted roof on a post in her front yard in Oradell, New Jersey. The box’s glass-faced door revealed a pile of books that people were free to take, return, and trade. Her Little Free Libr
ReasonLeitura de 6 mins
The Quest for a Libertarian Island Paradise
WHEN MICHAEL OLIVER was a teenager in Lithuania, the Nazis shipped him by train to a series of concentration camps in Poland. He was the only member of his Jewish family not murdered during World War II. It does not take an overly capacious imaginati
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsCrime & Violence
A California law mandating that grocery stores and restaurants donate unused food to food banks took effect in January, and the state has already received more than 500 requests for waivers from rural towns and counties. Food bank representatives in
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsCrime & Violence
My nonfiction book about a mother throwing her young children from a bridge occasionally prompts comments such as: “If you don’t give every penny in sales to the surviving children, you’re a monster.” While I appreciate that people find the idea of m
ReasonLeitura de 8 minsCrime & Violence
London Libel Lawsuits Punish Truth Tellers
AS A PRESIDENTIAL candidate in 2016, Donald Trump famously promised to “open up those libel laws” so that aggrieved public figures like him could sue irksome critics and “win money instead of having no chance.” After Trump took office, he downgraded
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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Some millennials are still waiting for their Hogwarts letter more than two decades after Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was released in the United States. The book topped the New York Times bestsellers list, and its sequels were enormously pop
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsCrime & Violence
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) doesn’t just regulate the country’s financial institutions: As a censor of books, it has no peer. Take its successful suppression of Bob’s memoir. In the early 2000s, the pseudonymous Bob developed a new f
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsCrime & Violence
A Democrat Challenges The Gun Ban For Marijuana Users
NIKKI FRIED, THE only Democrat among Florida’s statewide elected officials, might seem like an unlikely champion of the Second Amendment. But as Florida’s commissioner of agriculture and consumer affairs, Fried oversees medical marijuana and conceale
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The Border Legacy Of Title 42 Expulsions
WHEN PRESIDENT JOE Biden announced in April that he would not extend a controversial public health order that allowed U.S. immigration officials to expel migrants, many on the right criticized the move as premature or misguided. But the order has act
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsInternational Relations
Rattling Sabers At Russia
ON MAY 4, The New York Times revealed that the U.S. was providing classified Russian asset targeting intelligence to the Ukrainian military. While it’s not surprising that the military would provide an ally with information about Russian troop moveme
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsIntelligence (AI) & Semantics
Digital Immortality Or Deathbot?
WOULD YOU WANT your persona to live forever in the metaverse after your physical body shuffles off this mortal coil? That is what the metaverse platform Somnium Space plans to offer its users, starting in the next year or so, with its Live Forever se
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ERIC BOEHM Lazy Cakes brownies promised “baked in” relaxation, thanks to a dose of melatonin. But they’d only been on store shelves for a few months in the early 2010s before becoming the subject of a moral panic about sleep-inducing baked goods. “Th
ReasonLeitura de 3 minsCrime & Violence
From The Special Books Issue Archives
December 1996 “You can’t understand technology without understanding how people think about technology, and, of course, you need to know the bad ideas as well as the good. That’s why I want to insert a recommendation of just one influentially bad boo
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And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street
And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street (1937) wasn’t just the first book Theodor Geisel published as Dr. Seuss. It was among the six titles his literary estate ceased publishing and licensing last year because they “portray people in ways that
ReasonLeitura de 7 mins
The Dangerous Lesson of Book Bans in Public School Libraries
A SMALL GROUP OF parents attends a conference where they’re educated about the threats to American morality embedded in modern education. There they obtain a list of books believed to present a clear and present danger to young people. They bring tha
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsCrime & Violence
Blood In The Water
Heather Ann Thompson’s 2016 history of the Attica Prison takeover, Blood in the Water: The Attica Prison Uprising of 1971 and Its Legacy, won a Pulitzer Prize in history for its deeply researched account of the deadliest prison incident in U.S. histo
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsCrime & Violence
Desantis Vs. Disney
RON DESANTIS, FLORIDA’S Republican governor, has declared a regulatory war on one of the state’s biggest employers. But it’s taxpayers who may ultimately pay the price. In March, DeSantis signed into law H.B. 1577, which described itself as “an act r
ReasonLeitura de 2 minsCrime & Violence
Howl and Other Poems
When Allen Ginsberg first presented his poem “Howl” at an October 1955 reading in San Francisco, Beat poet Michael McClure said that “a human voice and body had been hurled against the harsh wall of America.” Ginsberg’s poem—112 lines describing drug
ReasonLeitura de 7 mins
You Can’t Stop Pirate Libraries
SHADOW LIBRARIES EXIST in the space where intellectual property rights collide with the free-flowing exchange of knowledge and ideas. In some cases, these repositories of pirated books and journal articles serve as a blow against censorship, allowing
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