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Author Archive

Articles by Jordan Michael Smith | Email the Author

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When McGovern met Mailer

Revisiting an unjustly forgotten account of the 1972 political conventions

When former U.S. Senator George McGovern died in late October, he was valorized as the rare decent man working in... More

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How the US captured the real 9/11 mastermind

Terry McDermott and Josh Meyer take us deep inside the hunt for KSM

The Hunt for KSM: Inside the Pursuit and Takedown of the Real 9/11 Mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed | By Terry... More

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America’s forgotten war

Historian Troy Bickham revisits the War of 1812

The Weight of Vengeance: The United States, the British Empire, and the War of 1812 | By Troy Bickham |... More

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What it takes to win the White House

A review of Samuel L. Popkin’s The Candidate

The Candidate: What It Takes to Win—And Hold—The White House | By Samuel L. Popkin | Oxford University Press... More

Revisiting Henry Luce’s “American Century”

Andrew Bacevich and others examine the influential essay

The Short American Century: A Postmortem | Edited by Andrew J. Bacevich | Harvard University Press | 296 pages, $25.95... More

The Literary Roots of the Gay Revolution

Reviewing Christopher Bram’s Eminent Outlaws: The Gay Writers Who Changed America

Eminent Outlaws: The Gay Writers Who Changed America | By Christopher Bram | Twelve Books | 371 pages, $27.99 In... More

Tracing the Roots of Modern Conservatism

Remembering the legacies of Thomas Dewey and Robert Taft

The Roots of Modern Conservatism: Dewey, Taft, and the Battle for the Soul of the Republican Party | By Michael... More

Searching for D.B. Cooper

Geoffrey Gray joins the hunt for the vanishing bandit

Skyjack: The Hunt for D.B. Cooper| By Geoffrey Gray | Crown | 302 pages, $25.00 In the winter of 1971,... More

Critical Condition

Can a retailer-sponsored book review keep its critical hands clean?

Christopher Hayes is a European-style social democrat, who worked at the left-leaning In These Times before assuming his current job... More

Contra Iran

Looking back at media coverage of the Iranian Hostage Crisis, thirty years later

Thirty years ago today, Iranian students invaded the United States embassy in Tehran and captured seventy-one American diplomats, keeping fifty-three... More

Stenography Machines

Attention, Mr. Perlstein: there’s nothing new about ‘he said/she said’

In a much-discussed Washington Post essay last week--“In America, Crazy is a Preexisting Condition”--the liberal historian Rick Perlstein argued that... More

How Forbes got to $475 million - That’s what a Hong Kong investor has agreed to pay for a firm that two years ago had trouble paying its rent

Are female journalists up to the job of a Jill Abramson interview? - Reporters avoid unflattering discussion about her firing

How to check if that viral video is true - Journalists don’t always verify user-generated content, so readers need to learn how to verify what they see online

The Grand Dame of Florida reporting has retired twice, but she’s still causing trouble - A conversation with the Tampa Bay Times’ Lucy Morgan

Brick by brick - After years of shrinking ambition at The Washington Post, Jeff Bezos has the paper thinking global domination


The 10 worst New Yorker longreads (Gawker)

“[A]pparently [Adam] Gopnik did not know you could bake fancy breads from France and other cultures. So he got his mom to teach him how to bake them. A fine anecdote, maybe, to tell a friend or a therapist. But in this case he wrote about it for the New Yorker, a magazine.”

Insufferable parenthetical asides, ranked (The Hairpin)

18. (strictly for the mise-en-scene)

You are now entering the demented kingdom of William T. Vollmann (TNR)

“Franzen tells a hilarious story of being a young writer in New York, meeting Vollmann, becoming fast friends, and inaugurating a draft swap. A while later, they exchanged work. Franzen gave Vollmann a dozen chiseled pages. Vollmann gave Franzen an entire novel.”

Bloggingheads

Greg Marx discusses democracy and news with Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute

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A report from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism

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