Tuesday, November 17, 2009


These are a few articles I've read recently.

Andrew Sullivan wrote an open letter to former President George Bush in the October issue of the Atlantic. You can read it here. It's about how the United States lost the moral high ground about torture. One passage that will stick with me is this one: "Every dissident in every foul tyranny on Earth, imprisoned and tortured by men and women far less scrupulous than you, now knows something he or she never knew before your presidency: America tortures too. What this will do to the march of freedom you believe in is yet unknown. But my view is that by condoning torture, by allowing it to take place, and by your vice president’s continuing defense and championing of torture as compatible with American traditions, you have done enormous damage to America’s role as a beacon of freedom and to the rule of law."

The other two are on a much less weighty topic: children's literature. Both are from the October 19th issue of the New Yorker. (I know, I'm a little behind in my magazine reading.)

The first one is about picture books, and specifically how their portrayal of kids and parents has changed, so that now parents are presented as tentative people, afraid to exercise authority over their bratty children. Most of the books that he refers to I haven't read, since my children are past the picture book stage, mostly, but this is a hugely entertaining article. You can read it here.

The second one is about how (some) YA books are "created" by committees. I found it eye-opening and a bit disheartening. Sadly the article is only available to subscribers, so check it out at the library or I'll loan you my copy if you live in the same country as I do!

No comments: