What Joan Didion Learned By Writing for ‘National Review’

Joan Didion is not the sort of woman whom most of her fans would expect to stand athwart history, yelling “Stop!” But for several years in the late 1950s and early 1960s, that’s just what Didion did—by working as book reviewer for the conservative magazine, National Review. Didion’s beginnings as a political and social conservative … Continued


The Problem with the New Thurgood Marshall Movie

Most people know the civil rights warrior Thurgood Marshall as the first black judge to sit on the United States Supreme Court. Few know the details of the legal slog he had to endure in the years beforehand. When I found out Hollywood was making a movie about his life, I was excited, but cautious. … Continued


Is Snapchat Ruining Museums?

The National Gallery of Art tastefully complements Washington, D.C.’s brutal summers. It’s cool, quiet, and houses some of the finest pieces of Western art—a welcome retreat from the humid swamp outside. But thanks to Snapchat, the outside has barged its way in. Inspired by the internet’s seemingly boundless classical art meme stash, eager Snappers rush … Continued


What Trump Could Learn about Flattery from Reading Plutarch

Nero may have fiddled while Rome burned, but it was the flattery of his courtiers that convinced the emperor he could get away with it. In his essay, “How to Tell a Flatterer from a Friend,” the late Roman historian Plutarch gestures at Nero, speculating that if the emperor had known to silence his flatterers, … Continued


Why Andrew Wyeth’s Art – Once Derided – Has Outlived His Critics

When the Museum of Modern Art purchased Andrew Wyeth’s painting, “Christina’s World” in 1948, art critics were furious. The painting—which features a woman crippled by polio crawling up a hill toward an old farmhouse—was a crowd pleaser, hyper-realistic, and contrary to the current abstract trends. Wyeth quickly became (and has remained) one of the most … Continued


Thirty Years Later, the Bork Nomination Remains an Important Cautionary Tale

Before those doggo memes took over the Internet, the term “Bork” referred to President Ronald Reagan’s 1987 U.S. Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork, whose strict constitutionalist views roused vicious partisan attacks on his character. The broadside was so sweeping that his name became a by-word for any public official obstructed from office by systematic vilification. … Continued


What Deep Throat Could Teach Us About Fake News

Since the election, the reading public has been tortured with the cries from both right and the left about “fake news.” And even though Google just updated its fact-checking tools, the problem doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. But let’s face it. We could have prevented this. If reporters and readers alike stopped … Continued