The Wilson Quarterly

Articles from Vol. 27, No. 1, Winter

Adventures in the Gene Pool
What's the real value of genetic evidence in determining who we are? Many commercial tracing services now offer customers the opportunity to explore their genetic ancestry. But that's by no means the same thing as providing them with an identity. ...
America's Pro-Arab Past. (Foreign Policy & Defense)
"The Real Roots of Arab Anti-Americanism" by Barry Rubin, in Foreign Affairs (Nov-Dec. 2002), 59 E. 68th St., New York, N.Y. 10021. The 9/11 terrorist attack was "undertaken as a consequence of specific American alliances and actions." So asserted...
Attack of the Mustard Plants! (Science, Technology & Environment)
"Here Come the Hyper-Accumulators!" by Niall Kirkwood in Harvard Design Magazine (Fall 2002-Winter 2003), 48 Quincy Street, Cambridge, Mass. 02138. Aficionados at 1950s horror flicks who think they know everything there is to know about voracious...
China's Palace of Memory
In 1860, a Western expeditionary force destroyed the fabulous complex of Beijing palaces known as Yuanming Yuan. Today, the Chinese are debating how the ruined site should be treated. The argument is ostensibly about the physical remaking of Yuanming...
Debating Preemptive War. (the Periodical Observer)
A Survey of recent articles Seeking to justify its threatened war on Iraq, the Bush administration last summer boldly updated the idea of preemptive war and stamped it official doctrine. Was this a grand strategy for a new age of terrorism--or a...
Debating the Black Family. (Society)
A Survey of Recent Articles The charge was to explore, in the words of Salmagundi (Winter-Spring 2002) editor Robert Boyers, "the situation of Afro-America," or, in Harvard University sociologist Orlando Patrerson's more specific ones, "the gender,...
Dreaming of Direct Democracy. (Politics & Government)
"Direct Democracy during the Progressive Era: A Crack in the Populist Veneer?" by Daniel A. Smith and Joseph Lubinski, in The Journal of Policy History (2002: No. 4), Saint Louis Univ., 3800 Lindell Blvd., P.O. Box 56907, St. Louis, Mo. 63156-0907....
Editor's Comment
In the past few months, the Wilson Center has been host to a procession of current and former world leaders, including United Nations secretary general Kofi Annan, President Bill Clinton, Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, and, at a December conference...
From the Center
When I returned to Washington from Europe 10 years ago, I thought the world had exhausted, at least for a time, the possibilities of incomprehensible change. During my four years as U.S. ambassador to Switzerland, the Berlin Wall had come tumbling...
How Blue Can You Get? (Arts & Letters)
A Distinctly Bluesy Condition' by Carlo Rotelta, in The American Scholar (Autumn 2002), 1785 Massachusetts Ave., N.W., 4th FL., Washington, D.C. 20036. Buddy Guy's blues guitar playing, "as instantly recognizable as his voice, can be shrewdly pent...
Impious Europe. (Holy Wars)
An enormous spiritual tension has begun to manifest itself in Europe. The presence here of large numbers of Muslim immigrants has brought home to ordinary citizens truths that have long been officially hidden: Religion is natural to human beings, and...
India's Embattled Secularism. (Holy Wars)
Indians are sometimes scolded for misunderstanding secularism. They're reminded that secularism in its original, Western sense means commitment to a public life fenced off from religion, not an equal pandering to all religions. This chiding is unreasonable....
Is J-School a Joke? (Press & Media)
"Can J-School Be Saved?" by Jack Shafer, in Slate (Oct. 7, 2002), www.slate.msn.com; "Some Ruminations on Journalism Schools as Columbia Turns" by Orville Schell, and "Getting Journalism Education Out of the Way" by Betty Medsger, in Zoned for Debate...
King Sugar. (Science, Technology & Environment)
"Sugar Rush" by Karen Schmidt, in New Scientist (Oct. 26, 2002), 151 Wardour St., London, England W1F 8WE. Move over, DNA, so-called blueprint of life! There's a new player in town, one that's actually been here all along but has been dismissed...
Literary Rockville. (Findings)
If life was sometimes callous to F. Scott Fitzgerald--alcoholism, crazy Zelda, ebbing celebrity ("My Cod, I am a forgotten man," he wrote in 1940, a few months before his fatal heart attack)--death has brought indignities of its own. Fitzgerald, urbane...
Naipaul's Truths. (Excerpt)
Last December, on the day after being presented with the Nobel Prize for literature, V. S. Naipaul sat down in Stockholm for a televised conversation with three fellow literary laureates, Guner Grass, Nadine Gordimer, and Seamus Heaney and with Per...
Prostitution and Freedom. (Religion & Philosophy)
"Prostitution and Sexual Autonomy: Making Sense of the Prohibition of Prostitution" by Scott A. Anderson, in Ethics (July 2002), Department of Philosophy, Northwestern University, 1818 Hinman Ave., Evanston, Ill. 60208-1315. Is prostitution "just...
Sociology's Sad Decline. (Society)
"Whatever Happened to Sociology?" by Peter L. Berger, in First Things (Oct. 2002), Institute on Religion and Public Life, 156 Fifth Ave., Ste. 400, New York, N.Y. 10010. In 1963, Berger published a book called Invitation to Sociology. Still in print,...
The Art Museum Comes Home. (Arts & Letters)
"A World Changed? Art Museums after September 11" by James Cuno, in Bulletin of the American Academy of Arts 6 Sciences (Summer 2002), 136 Irving St., Cambridge, Mass. 02138. Tom Krens, director of New York City's Guggenheim Museum, thought he had...
The Daughterless Gene. (Science, Technology & Environment)
"The Plot to Kill the Carp" by Todd Woody, in Wired (Oct. 2002), 520 Third St., 3rd Fl., San Francisco, Calif. 94107-1815. Eight years ago, Australian wildlife officials were alarmed to discover environmentally destructive European carp --which...
The Disenchantment. (Holy Wars)
Amid the clutter of commerce in Isfahan's old bazaar, a dust-colored dome rises modestly above the shops in a rock-and-dirt-strewn side street. Low arches lead into the courtyard of the simple, domed shrine for a 17th-century cleric, Mullah Mohammad...
The Global Money Curse. (Politics & Government)
"Financing Politics: A Global View" by Michael Pinto Duschinsky, in Journal of Democracy (Oct. 2002), 1101 15th St., N.W, Ste 800, Washington, D.C. 20005. All around the free and quasi-free world, from Albania to Zambia, there has been no shortage...
The Jungle of Journalism. (Press & Media)
"Upton Sinclair and the Contradictions of Capitalist Journalism" by Robert W. McChesney and Ben Scott, in Monthly Review (May 2002), 122W. 27th St., New York, N.Y. 10001. Just as his novel The Jungle (1906) led to reform in the meatpacking industry,...
The Lake Wobegone Effect. (Society)
The Dangerous Myth of Grade Inflation" by Alfie Kohn, in The Chronicle Review (Nov. 8, 2002), 1255 23rd St., N.W., Ste. 700, Washington, D.C. 20037. At Harvard University and other campuses, a handful of administrators and professors have launched...
The Mama of Dada. (Arts & Letters)
"Gertrude Stein Comes Home" by Seymour I. To]1, in The Sewanee Review (Spring 2002), 735 University Ave., Sewanee, Tenn. 37383. When Gertrude Stein returned to America to begin her now-legendary lecture tour in 1934, it seemed that no one, perhaps...
The Maxim Way. (Press & Media)
"Does Size Matter?" by Michael Scherer and "The Curse of Tom Wolfe" by Michael Shapiro, in Columbia Journalism Review (Nov.-Dec. 2002), 200 Alton Pl., Marion, Ohio 43302. In our breakneck jet-set age, long-form magazine articles have shrunk so much...
The Resilient Swedish Model. (Other Nations)
"Globalization and Taxation: Challenges to the Swedish Welfare State" by Sven Steinmo, in Comparative Political Studies (Sept. 2002), SAGE Publications Ltd., 6 Bonhill St., London EC2A 4PU, England. In the early 1990s, the future looked bleak for...
The Return of Tyranny. (Foreign Policy & Defense)
"The New Age of Tyranny" by Mark Lilla, in The New York Review of Books (Oct. 24, 2002), 1755 Broadway, 5th fl., New York NY 10019-3780. President George W. Bush, the United States, and the democratic West now face not an "axis of evil," but rather...
The Revolution of 1803
The Louisiana Purchase of 1803 was "the event which more than any other, after the foundation of the Government and always excepting its preservation, determined the character of our national life." So said President Theodore Roosevelt on the 100th...
The Right to Bear Checks. (Economics Labor & Business)
"Why Do We Use So Many Checks?" by Sujit Ghakravorti and Timothy Mc Hugh, in Economic Perspectives (2002: Third Qtr.), Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, 230 S. LaSalle St. Chicago, Ill. 60604-1413. Every month in the United States, more than 15...
The Totalitarian Puzzle. (Religion & Philosophy)
A Survey of Recent Articles When Hannah Arendt's The Origins of Totalitarianism appeared in 1951, the West had only recently prevailed over Hitler's Germany and now faced the menace of Stalin's Soviet Union. Origins was the first major philosophical...
The Wall That Never Was. (Holy Wars)
A hundred years ago, advanced thinkers were all but unanimous in dismissing religion as a relic of mankind's mental infancy. What's being dismissed today is the idea that humanity will outgrow religion. Contrary to the expectations of Sigmund Freud,...
Togetherness at the Top. (Economics, Labor & Business)
"When Two (or More) Heads Are Better than One: The Promise and Pitfalls of Shared Leadership" by James O' Toole, Jay Galbraith, and Edward E. Lawler Ill, in California Management Review (Summer 2002), Univ. of California, F501 Haas School of Business...
Too Much of a Good Thing? (Foreign Policy & Defense)
"The NGO Scramble: Organizational Insecurity and the Political Economy of Transnational Action" by Alexander Cooley and James Ron, International Security (Summer 2002), 5 Cambridge Center, 4th Fl., Cambridge, Mass. 02142-1493. Everyone's cheering...
Too Much Testosterone? (Other Nations)
"A Surplus of Men, A Deficit of Peace" by Valerie M. Hudson and Andrea Den Boer, in International Security (Spring 2002), MIT Press Journals, 5 Cambridge Center, 4th Fl., Cambridge, Mass. 02142-1493. In medieval Portugal, only the firstborn Sons...
Transatlantic Ills
Tensions between the United States and its European allies often ran high during the later days of the Cold War, but today's conflicts are more numerous and frequently more severe--and they won't be resolved without strong commitments from leaders...
What Makes Johnny Gay? (Society)
"Opposite-Sex Twins and Adolescent Same-Sex Attraction" by Peter S. Bearman and Hannah Bruckner, in American Journal of Sociology (Mar. 2002), Univ. of Chicago Press, Journals Division, 1427 E. 60th St., Chicago, Ill. 60637. It's commonly supposed...
Whither the Sprawl People? (Politics & Government)
Where Democrats Can Build a Majority..." by John B. Judis and Ruy Teixcira, and "The Brawl in the Sprawl" by David Brooks, in Blueprint Magazine (Sept. 27, 2002), 600 Pennsylvania Ave., S.E., Ste. 400, Washington, D.C. 20003. The last presidential...
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