By Donna Cole
Here are the better long reads and essays I have ran across in the last week or so.
Paul Bloom makes the case against empathy with "The Baby in the Well" in The New Yorker.
Reviewing the book "The Autistic Brain: Thinking Across the Spectrum", Jerome Groopman asks,"What is Autism?" in The New York Review of Books.
Technically not a long read, I found Panthea Lees' report on a modern version of the telephone game, "Chatting in Code on Walkie -Talkies in Pakistan's Tribal Areas" in The Atlantic rather interesting.
From 2000, The Paris Review offers an entertaining interview with the author Hunter S. Thompson in what is the first of their series, "The Art of Journalism." Later, I post here a piece of modern gonzo journalism, which is what Thompson was famous for, and most likely can be credited for with inventing. That being the journalist makes themselves part of the story, tells it in first person, and is not very objective about it.
From 2001, Nick Gillespie for Reason Magazine reviews Lee Hill's biography of 60's icon screenwriter Terry Southern in his piece, "Victim of the Sexual Revolution". Southern wrote the screenplays for some of the biggest movies of the 60s, such as Dr. Strangelove, Barbarella and Easy Rider. His rise was as quick as his fall.
Speaking of movies, I watched a movie by director Mike Nichols last week called "The Fortune" starring Stockard Channing, Jack Nicholson, and Warren Beatty. It's a 20s period piece comedy made in 1975. Nichols directed such famous films as The Graduate, Silkwood, Primary Colors, and one of my personal favorites Catch 22. I'm surprised I never stumbled across The Fortune until the other night, it's a really funny movie. To say it is well made goes without saying, but I think many write off movies from the 70s as they would like to write off that whole decade.
I have to admit I was reluctant to post this one for a number of reasons, mainly because I am working on a critique of it. But, I decided to post it because I think it is important to read. Emily Witt writes a fantastic piece of gonzo journalism bringing her personal life into her investigation of hardcore pornography in "What Do You Desire" for N+1.
This is why Van Halen couldn't have Brown M & Ms backstage, it's not what you think.
I wish I had more for you, but I have been rather busy. So that's it until I do a bit more reading, and remember this. Reading makes you smart, reading things that are out of your comfort zone makes you even smarter. Sweet D.