In Defense of Misery

Beyond Monogamy

edited by James R. Smith, edited by Lynn G. Smith

Divorced in America

by Joseph Epstein
How shall we conduct our lives with one another: to marry or not; whether to reproduce; to be monogamous, polygamous, or some combination of both; to act out fantasy with its compelling promise of permanent exhilaration or to sublimate all for stability—neither result guaranteed? We make our beds and lie in them tossing, sometimes exchanging them for others—leaving behind, in most cases, a great pile of dirty linen.

An American Tragedy

Hour of Gold, Hour of Lead: Diaries and Letters of Anne Morrow Lindbergh, 1929-1932

by Anne Morrow Lindbergh
For me and for others of my generation born in the early Thirties, the Lindbergh name sounded not heroic notes, but a dark tone. In the years preceding World War II, there were those frightening words which I did not quite understand but which were all of a piece: Lindbergh, …

Kids, Pull Up Your Socks!

His Own Where

by June Jordan

The Planet of Junior Brown

by Virginia Hamilton
Since television his largely superseded books as children’s entertainment, it is reasonable to question what function children’s literature now has—or at least what function is intended. I am speaking of those books for children meant to have a beneficent effect on their readers, apart from the pulp aimed at the …

The You and Me that Used to Be

Caught in the Quiet

by Rod McKuen

Listen to the Warm

by Rod McKuen
When you are young, pop music is everywhere—has been everywhere for the young since the advent of the radio and the car. Promising promises to the early adolescent and recalling past frissons to those old enough for nostalgia, such music creates its own calendar, memory bank, and even an identity …

Little Private Lives

Nutshell Library

by Maurice Sendak

Where the Wild Things Are

by Maurice Sendak
Children’s book people are always fussing that they and their product are not taken seriously enough. They should instead recognize their good luck and be still lest the bad fairy hear them and grant their wish. Since the number of good books for children published in any given year would …


The Governor Listeth

by William F. Buckley Jr.
Through most of the Sixties, there had been something in the air about Mr. William Buckley that had the tone of tinkling bells, of games played in a courtyard, of mime shows and chivalric songs. We never quite believed in him; knew that his performances, so artfully arranged for our …

The Boys

Managing Mailer

by Joe Flaherty

The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight

by Jimmy Breslin
Stick with your friends and let something come out of that. —Mike Nichols It is not always easy for us, living among them, to imagine that we walk with legendary men. Still, the legends grow; tales of the new New York wits, the “new journalists” who, following the axiom …

Notes from Above Ground

We are always surprised by the banality of the perverse, by the limitations the body places on sexual activity, by the commonplaces of the erotic imagination. A subject so intensely charged ought, it would seem, to come up with more when it erupts in public view. The paraphernalia of fetishism …