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Russian Spies

July 1, 2010

This week, the FBI busted a ring of alleged Russian spies, refreshing memories of Cold War espionage. One of them is Anna Chapman. According to the Washington Post, “Ever since photos of Anna Chapman began circulating online late Tuesday, the Internet at large has been foaming, frothing, fanatic for details about the reported 28-year-old secret […]

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Elmer Kelton

June 27, 2010

The author Elmer Kelton died last year. I wrote an appreciation for the Wall Street Journal. A reader recently sent this video clip of Kelton reading from his best book, The Time It Never Rained. Before watching (and listening), I hadn’t heard his voice. Kelton’s last novel, Texas Standoff, will come out in September. He […]

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June 20, 2010

Happy Father’s Day! I dedicated my second book to my dad (and my mom). The year before it came out, when my co-author and I were starting on the manuscript and trying to sell our proposal, our agent suggested that I publish something on the major themes of the book. The result was an article […]

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The Jungle

June 12, 2010

Last week, I re-read my article on Upton Sinclair and The Jungle. It appeared in the Wall Street Journal four years ago. On Tuesday, after the Journal published my article on O. Henry, I mentioned Sinclair in a post about O. Henry on The Corner. This led to an exchange in the comments section of […]

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June 6, 2010

So they’re dedicating a statue of Stalin at the National D-Day Memorial in Virginia. In other words, a memorial dedicated to one of freedom’s great missions in the 20th century will honor one of its great enemies. Lee Edwards of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation has condemned the choice. I don’t have much patience […]

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May 31, 2010

From my article in The New Criterion: Gilgamesh has entered the record books as the world’s first known example of true literature. For most people, it remains little more than the answer to a trivia question. Maybe they once had a professor of classics who casually remarked at the beginning of the semester that something […]

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