THR Web Features   /   July 31, 2015

The Hedgehog’s Array: July 31, 2015

Noteworthy reads from the last week:

“Terry Castle: The Anti-Paglia,” Helen Andrews

“Like Paglia, Castle’s entrée into the literary tradition of sexual inversion was a teenage fascination with Oscar Wilde—she dreamed of being ‘male, dandified, and in some sort of filial relationship to various 1890s Decadents.’ Unlike Paglia, her grown-up persona is less flamboyant, more Jamesian.”

“Bedeviled by Books in Translation,” Michael Robbins

“As most translators' prefaces attest, every translation, unless it's a crib, negotiates in its own way the problem of how to achieve two contradictory desiderata: to be faithful to the original, and to create a work of art in the new language.”

“Masks,” Jake Orbison

“But looking back years later on the word’s full legacy, confessional’s greatest shortcoming is in its implication not for the poets of the past but for those to come. If all of us have taken our clothes off, where do we go from here?”

“Saigon Summer,” Sarah Mansfield Taber

“One summer evening in Saigon in 1974, we were invited to dinner at the home of another U.S. embassy employee, probably a covert operative like my father.”

“Mutually Assured Content,” John Herrman

“But for everyone else—the papers and magazines that became sites, the sites that became blogs, the blogs that became generalist news organizations—accepting the platform bargain is accepting that most of what they did before is legacy and burden. Most magazines never truly figured out the web, and never will.”

Hedgehogs abroad:


“Uber and the Lawlessness of ‘Sharing Economy’ Corporates,” Frank Pasquale and Siva Vaidhyanathan

“One could make a strong argument that France would benefit from more taxi drivers and more competition. But that’s for the people of France to decide through their elected representatives. The spirit of Silicon Valley should not dictate policy for the rest of the world.”

“Checked Out,” Siva Vaidhyanathan

“The Library of Congress, like all the majestic libraries that connect our nation to its history and future, is a temple to the Enlightenment. But it’s more than that.”

Our intern recommends:


“Fitted,” Moira Weigel

“Like confession and therapy, activity trackers promise to improve us by confronting us with who we are when we are not paying attention. The difference is that they produce clarity constantly, in real time.”