Who knew that mixing the intelligent and the idiosyncratic would yield a long life for a certain small quarterly?
Pressing questions and persistent vitality
A political traditionalist critiques our pseudo-conservative president
Professing liberal doubt in an age of fundamentalist fervor
Working in the mop-and-bucket brigade in college created the perspectives of a lifetime
The posthumous masterwork of an influential black historian tells how slavery itself undermined the Confederacy
Can a friendship really end for no good reason?
“Could we have been better parents?” At 87, Cornell emeritus professor James McConkey reflects on the inadvertent ways that parents—especially fathers—shape their children. “Most parents don’t want their children to suffer the kind of grief inflicted on them by their own parents,” he says in this essay from our Spring 2008 issue. “By saving them from that, though, they may inflict upon their children difficulties of another kind.” As the father to three sons, McConkey is acutely aware of how his relationship with his own father informed his relationship with his children. His essay “What Kind of Father Am I?” is a meditation on aging, parenthood, and the bond between fathers and sons.
When American literature became good enough for Americans, what happened to the literary canon?
Robert Fagle's bold solutions to the problem of Virgil
Thomas Eakins, yearning for the ideal in a materialistic age
In the last century, where did warfare end and genocide begin?