Contents


The Decline and Fall of Literature

In Plato’s Cave by Alvin Kernan

The Death of Literature by Alvin Kernan

Literature: An Embattled Profession by Carl Woodring

What’s Happened to the Humanities? edited by Alvin Kernan

The Rise and Fall of English: Reconstructing English as a Discipline by Robert Scholes

The Employment of English: Theory, Jobs, and the Future of Literary Studies by Michael Bérubé

Literature Lost: Social Agendas and the Corruption of the Humanities by John M. Ellis

The Myth of Myths

Splitting the Difference: Gender and Myth in Ancient Greece and India by Wendy Doniger

The Implied Spider: Politics and Theology in Myth by Wendy Doniger

The Advancement of Francis Bacon

Philosophical Studies c.1611-c.1619 by Francis Bacon, edited by Graham Rees

Hostage to Fortune: The Troubled Life of Francis Bacon by Lisa Jardine and Alan Stewart

Francis Bacon: The History of a Character Assassination by Nieves Mathews

Francis Bacon: History, Politics and Science, 1561-1626 by B.H.G. Wormald

Francis Bacon by Perez Zagorin

Always Time to Kill

Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege, 1942-1943 by Antony Beevor

Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland by Christopher R. Browning

Zhukov’s Greatest Defeat: The Red Army’s Epic Disaster in Operation Mars, 1942 by David M. Glantz, with German translations by Mary E. Glantz

An Intimate History of Killing: Face-to-Face Killing in Twentieth-Century Warfare by Joanna Bourke

The Sorrow of War: A Novel of North Vietnam by Bao Ninh

Hitler, 1889-1936: Hubris by Ian Kershaw

Hitler’s Army: Soldiers, Nazis, and War in the Third Reich by Omer Bartov

The Iliad by Homer, translated by Robert Fagles

The First World War by John Keegan

The Pity of War by Niall Ferguson

Contributors

Shaul Bakhash is Robinson Professor of History at George Mason University and the author of The Reign of the Ayatollahs: Iran and the Islamic Revolution. (September 2005)

Whitney Balliett’s most recent book is Collected Works: A Journal of Jazz, 1954—2001 (August 2003).

Ian Buruma has been a frequent contributor to The New York Review of Books since 1985 and the magazine’s editor since September 2017. From 2003 to 2017 he was professor of human rights, democracy and journalism at Bard College. Buruma was born in 1951 in The Hague, Holland. He was educated at Leyden University, where he studied Chinese literature and history, and at Nihon University College of Arts, in Tokyo, where he studied cinema. Living in Japan from 1975 to 1981, Buruma worked as a film reviewer, photographer, and documentary filmmaker. In the 1980s, Buruma was based in Hong Kong, where he edited the cultural section of the Far Eastern Economic Review, and from where he later travelled all over Asia as a freelance writer. Buruma was a fellow of the Wissenschaftskolleg in Berlin in 1991, and a fellow of the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington DC in 1999. He is a fellow of the European Council of Foreign Relations and a board member of Human Rights in China. In 2008, Buruma won the Erasmus Prize for “exceptional contributions to culture society, or social sciences in Europe.” Buruma has written seventeen books, including The Wages of Guilt (1995), Murder in Amsterdam (2006), Year Zero (2013), and Theater of Cruelty (2014). He has won several prizes for his books, including the LA Times Book Prize for Murder in Amsterdam, and PEN-Diamonstein Spielvogel award for the art of the essay for Theater of Cruelty.

Gordon A. Craig (1913–2005) was a Scottish-American historian of Germany. He taught at both Princeton and Stanford, where he was named the J.E. Wallace Sterling Professor of Humanities in 1979.

Andrew Delbanco is Alexander Hamilton Professor of American Studies at Columbia.
 (November 2016)

Joan Didion is the author, most recently, of Blue Nights and The Year of Magical Thinking, among seven other works of nonfiction. Her five novels include A Book of Common Prayer and Democracy.
 (May 2016)

Jason Epstein, former Editorial Director at Random House, was a founder of The New York Review and of the Library of America. He is the author of Eating: A Memoir. (Dectember 2013)

David Gilmour’s books include The Last Leopard: A Life of Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa and The Pursuit of Italy: A 
History of a Land, Its Regions, and Their Peoples.
 (March 2014)

Alison Gopnik is Professor of Psychology at the University of California at Berkeley and the author, with Andrew Meltzoff, of Words, Thoughts, and Theories. Her new book, written with Andrew Meltzoff and Patricia Kuhl, is The Scientist in the Crib: Minds, Brains and How Children Learn, which will be published in September. (May 1999)

Jasper Griffin is Emeritus Professor of Classical Literature and a Fellow of Balliol College, Oxford. His books include Homer on Life and Death.

Seamus Heaney’s first poetry collection, Death of a Naturalist, appeared forty years ago. Since then he has published poetry, criticism, and translations that have established him as one of the leading poets of his generation. In 1995 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.

Robert L. Herbert, after a long career at Yale, is now Andrew W. Mellon Professor Emeritus of Humanities at Mount Holyoke. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Society, and has been named Officier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government. Among his books are Impressionism: Art, Leisure and Parisian Society, Nature’s Workshop: Renoir’s Writings on the Decorative Arts, and Seurat: Drawings and Paintings. His most recent book is Seurat and the Making of La Grande Jatte.

Christopher Hitchens (1949–2011) was a British-American journalist and social critic. Known for his confrontational style and contrarian views on a range of social issues, Hitchens was a frequent contributor to The Nation, The Atlantic, The Times Literary Supplement and Vanity Fair. Hitchens recounts his struggle with esophageal cancer in Mortality, which was published in 2012.

Colin McGinn is a philosopher. His books include Philosophy of ­Language: The Classics Explained and Prehension: The Hand and the ­Emergence of Humanity. (June 2016)

Eric L. McKitrick (1920–2002) was a historian of the United States. Educated at Columbia, McKitrick taught at the University of Chicago and Rutgers before returning to Columbia in 1960. He is perhaps best known for Andrew Johnson and Reconstruction; his other works treated slavery and the American South, as well as the history of the American party system.

Larry McMurtry lives in Archer City, Texas. His novels include The Last Picture Show, Terms of Endearment, Lonesome Dove (winner of the 1986 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction), Folly and Gloryand Rhino Ranch. His nonfiction works include a biography of Crazy Horse, Walter Benjamin at the Dairy Queen, Paradise, Sacagawea’s Nickname: Essays on the American West and, most recently, Custer.

Jonathan Mirsky is a historian of China. He was formerly the East Asia Editor of The Times of London and China Correspondent for The Observer.
 (December 2016)

Quentin Skinner is Barber Beaumont Professor of the Humanities at Queen Mary, University of London. His latest book, Forensic Shakespeare, will be published later this year. (June 2014)

Richard Wilbur’s book Mayflies: New Poems and Translations will be published in April. (November 2000)