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On Faith & Reason

The VisitWhen I looked up from my blank pagethere was an angel in the room.A rather commonplace angel,presumably of lower rank.You cannot imagine, he said,the degree to which you’re… More

Transmigration of Souls

Transmigration of SoulsIt's hard for you to believe in reincarnationbut you're willing to try,considering the alternative.If only someone would explainwhere the souls are, in a city or a townor… More

Conversation With Noah

– If all those people must be flooded, is it not fair that they be warned?– The calamity itself is the warning.– Then your god is acting rashly.– What… More

A Field Guide to Ukrainian Sex

A Field Guide to Ukrainian Sex by Oksana Zabuzhko is a book that absolutely deserves to be translated into English, and pronto. Ostensibly the tale of a disastrous love… More

Watching As the World Vanishes

It was shameful, everyone agreed afterward, that no one did anything at the time. Because people knew it was happening. There were reports, early on. People saw things, near… More

Patriot Act reauthorization blocked

Writers, booksellers, librarians, and other defenders of reader privacy last night won the biggest battle yet in their four-year fight to restore the protections for the privacy of bookstore… More

Poet’s Choice

I attended an event last month in New York City sponsored by the PEN American Center and entitled "State of Emergency: Unconventional Readings." PEN believes that it is urgently… More

PEN denounces postponement in Orhan Pamuk trial

PEN, the world association of writers, decried the suspension of trial proceedings against Turkish author Orhan Pamuk, insisting the charges against him should have been dismissed outright and calling… More

Aerial Maneuvers

Calvino's The Baron in the Trees, the book of his I love most, has accompanied me through life as a sort of moral and political manifesto. It may seem… More