European History

Karl Kraus: Apocalyptic Satirist

“The secret of the demagogue is to make himself as stupid as his audience so that they believe they are as clever as he.” – Karl Kraus If you’ve never heard of Karl Kraus, the Austrian satirist who inflicted withering and witty critiques on the mass media, the military-industrial complex,

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Proustmania

The Summer issue of BookForum features a number of new titles on Marcel Proust, including two by the acclaimed Proust biographer William C. Carter, whose Marcel Proust: A Life was named a New York Times Notable Book in 2000. Carter’s new Proust in Love portrays Proust’s amorous adventures and misadventures

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Memorial Day

On Monday, May 29, Americans will observe Memorial Day, commemorating the U.S. men and women whose lives were lost, and continue to be lost, in military service for their country. The day marks a fitting occasion to look back at the wars which have defined our nation’s history and the

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June 1941: Hitler and Stalin

“Does anybody really need to read another book about Hitler or Stalin?” asks Tim Rutten in the Los Angeles Times.”If you think not, spend a few engrossingly profitable hours with John Lukacs’ new book, June 1941, and you’ll be reminded that the one thing history does not admit is a

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Sketches from a Secret War

Aspiring artist turned intelligence operative, powerful statesman, and underground activist, Henryk Józewski was an instrumental figure in the battle for Polish independence during the tumultuous decades of the early and mid twentieth century. He put down his paintbrush long enough to direct Polish intelligence in Ukraine, govern the borderland region

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Manliness

“This book is about manliness,” begins the preface of a provocative new book by Harvey C. Mansfield, William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of Government at Harvard University. What is that? It’s best to start from examples we know: our sports heroes, too many to name; Margaret Thatcher, the British prime

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London As You’ve Never Seen It Before

“The scale and drama of the largest of these works takes your breath away. This is art as theatrical spectacle.” The works so acclaimed are a series of monumental black-and-white paintings of the London cityscape by John Virtue (b. 1947), former Associate Artist of the National Gallery, London (2003-2005). These

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The Master of Landscape

The stunning retrospective of the works of Jacob Van Ruisdael and the accompanying catalog by Seymour Slive, Jacob Van Ruisdael: Master of Landscape, receive a substantial review in the most recent edition of The New York Review of Books. What Jacob van Ruisdael’s standing was in his own time is

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Spies Like Us

Back when spies were spies, they spied by the rules—with the exception perhaps of those who did their spying for totalitarian regimes. The Constitution of the Soviet Union, for example, guaranteed the privacy of correspondence, but the government still read people’s private mail. By the end of the twentieth century,

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A Little History Generates a Lot of Buzz

A Little History of the World continues to receive praise in publications across the country. The Los Angeles Times Book Review counts A Little History among the 20 titles in its Favorite Nonfiction Books of 2005 in its holiday roundup. The Raleigh News & Observer also names A Little History

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