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The New Yorker

Books & Fiction: Harold Bloom on Ursula K. Le Guin’s “The Left Hand of Darkness”

Email sent: Nov 21, 2020 3:30pm

Plus: how Paul Celan reconceived language; and should America still police the world?
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Two figures in winter gear and sled looking out at an ethereal snowscape. Page-Turner

The Strange Friendships of Ursula K. Le Guin’s “The Left Hand of Darkness”

The only thing that makes it possible to read and reread the best novels is not knowing what comes next, even though we have read them before.

By Harold Bloom

Essays & Criticism

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How Paul Celan Reconceived Language for a Post-Holocaust World

His poems, now translated into English in their entirety, are an invitation to a new kind of reading.

By Ruth Franklin
An eagle balancing the globe over its wings
Under Review

Should America Still Police the World?

Two recent books, by Robert Gates and Patrick Porter, present starkly different visions for the future of the United States’ primacy in world affairs.

By Daniel Immerwahr
A map of the Western United States and Mexico, illustrating the Mexican-American War

When the Enslaved Went South

In the four decades before the Civil War, thousands of fugitive slaves escaped from the U.S. to Mexico. Runaways found both unfamiliar risks and high rewards south of the border.

By Alice Baumgartner
The cover of "The Office of Historical Corrections" on a green background.

Briefly Noted

“Recasting the Vote,” “What Becomes a Legend Most,” “The War of the Poor,” and “The Office of Historical Corrections.”

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A man sitting on a couch inside the pages of a book. Poems

“We Feel Now a Largeness Coming On”

“Do you see how mighty you’ve made us, / all these generations running?”

By Tracy K. Smith
A man typing on the typewriter. Poems

“Back from the Cannery”

“The women at our house worked in the cannery / and, afterward, at home.”

By Kirmen Uribe

The Writer’s Voice

Salman Rushdie.
The Writer’s Voice: Fiction from the Magazine

Salman Rushdie Reads “The Old Man in the Piazza”

The author reads his story from the November 23, 2020, issue of the magazine.

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A bunch of hands each handling a single task Annals of Technology

The Rise and Fall of Getting Things Done

How personal productivity transformed work—and failed to.

By Cal Newport
A french apple tart. Kitchen Notes

A French Answer to American Apple Pie

Tarte aux pommes includes fruit cooked and not so cooked, pastry the texture of buttered air, and a presentation that’s a gift, like a painting.

By Bill Buford

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