California Notes

On covering the Patty Hearst trial in San Francisco, 1976

General Hayden’s Offensive

His “truth” seems to be whatever serves the interests of intelligence and military professionals

Playing to the Edge: American Intelligence in the Age of Terror

by Michael V. Hayden

The Quest for Gay Pleasure

Our Young Man

by Edmund White

Botticelli: Love, Wisdom, Terror

He was determined to be the first painter to do justice to Dante’s ‘Divine Comedy.’

Botticelli and Treasures from the Hamilton Collection

an exhibition at the Kupferstichkabinett, Berlin, October 16, 2015–January 24, 2016; and the Courtauld Gallery, London, February 18–May 15, 2016

Botticelli Reimagined

an exhibition at the Gemäldegalerie, Berlin, September 24, 2015–January 24, 2016; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, March 5–July 3, 2016

‘Going Dark’

Cyberphobia: Identity, Trust, Security and the Internet

by Edward Lucas

The Future of Foreign Intelligence: Privacy and Surveillance in a Digital Age

by Laura K. Donohue

The Hacked World Order: How Nations Fight, Trade, Maneuver, and Manipulate in the Digital Age

by Adam Segal

Dark Territory: The Secret History of Cyber War

by Fred Kaplan

An Overwhelming ‘Elektra’


an opera by Richard Strauss, directed by Patrice Chéreau, with Vincent Huguet

To the Lighthouse

Brilliant Beacons: A History of the American Lighthouse

by Eric Jay Dolin

Our Awful Prisons: How They Can Be Changed

Today we have 710 people per 100,000 in prison in the US, compared to fifty-eight in Finland.

Mr. Smith Goes to Prison: What My Year Behind Bars Taught Me About America’s Prison Crisis

by Jeff Smith

Understanding Mass Incarceration: A People’s Guide to the Key Civil Rights Struggle of Our Time

by James Kilgore

The First Civil Right: How Liberals Built Prison America

by Naomi Murakawa

From the War on Poverty to the War on Crime: The Making of Mass Incarceration in America

by Elizabeth Hinton

Caught: The Prison State and the Lockdown of American Politics

by Marie Gottschalk

Quality Lit: She Took Charge

The Lady with the Borzoi: Blanche Knopf, Literary Tastemaker Extraordinaire

by Laura Claridge

Indonesia: The Battle Over Islam

Islamisation and Its Opponents in Java: A Political, Social, Cultural and Religious History, c. 1930 to the Present

by M.C. Ricklefs

Islam in Indonesia: The Contest for Society, Ideas and Values

by Carool Kersten

Islam and Democracy in Indonesia: Tolerance Without Liberalism

by Jeremy Menchik

The Courage of the Composer

The Noise of Time

by Julian Barnes

The Heritage of a Great Man

The Most Wanted Man in China: My Journey from Scientist to Enemy of the State

by Fang Lizhi, translated from the Chinese by Perry Link

The Passions of Vargas Llosa

Notes on the Death of Culture: Essays on Spectacle and Society

by Mario Vargas Llosa, edited and translated from the Spanish by John King

The Discreet Hero

by Mario Vargas Llosa, translated from the Spanish by Edith Grossman

Elite Black & Quite Different

Negroland: A Memoir

by Margo Jefferson

The Violent World of Elena Ferrante

The Story of the Lost Child

by Elena Ferrante, translated from the Italian by Ann Goldstein

The Bittersweet Victories of Women

Litigation is not for the fainthearted

Because of Sex: One Law, Ten Cases, and Fifty Years That Changed American Women’s Lives at Work

by Gillian Thomas

A Wonderfully Ephemeral College

Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College, 1933–1957

an exhibition at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, October 10, 2015–January 24, 2016; the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, February 21–May 14, 2016; and the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio, September 17, 2016–January 1, 2017

Intersecting Colors: Josef Albers and His Contemporaries

an exhibition at the Mead Art Museum, Amherst, Massachusetts, August 28, 2015–January 3, 2016

Surrounded by Jew-Haters

Mihail Sebastian’s shocking novel ‘For Two Thousand Years’

For Two Thousand Years

by Mihail Sebastian, translated from the Romanian by Philip Ó Ceallaigh

The Little-Known Ted

Lion of the Senate: When Ted Kennedy Rallied the Democrats in a GOP Congress

by Nick Littlefield and David Nexon

A Great, Ignored Transformation?

A History of Balance, 1250–1375: The Emergence of a New Model of Equilibrium and Its Impact on Thought

by Joel Kaye

Innocents Abroad


by Mischa Berlinski

Who Was David Hume?

What explains the philosopher’s newfound appeal?

Hume: An Intellectual Biography

by James A. Harris

The Magic of Donald Trump

We are told again and again: his is the most improbable political story in decades, perhaps in history. And yet…

Crippled America: How to Make America Great Again

by Donald J. Trump

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