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May 16, 2011 | The Nation

In the Magazine

May 16, 2011

Cover: Cover photo by Luciano Mellace/Reuters, design by Milton Glaser Incorporated

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William Greider on the deficit fixation, John Palattella on Elizabeth Bishop and Margaret Spillane on Tony Kushner's new play

Editorials

If Obama continues to refuse to intervene in the economy, Americans are in for a painful decade.

The Syrian president is is facing unprecedented pressure rooted in grievances over government repression, corruption, a weak economy and lack of civil liberties. He cannot hunker down and wait for the storm to pass.

John Nichols on Paul Ryan, Barry Schwabsky on Ai Weiwei and George Zornick on a budget cut for the EPA

Without turning into sentimental left-wing pageantry, Kushner’s new play illuminates radicalism and makes art of sectarian dreams and failures.

Columns

How did he dupe us all? Americans love to be inspired by simple solutions to complicated problems—especially when the solutions are cheap and the problems are far away.

As a black man, Obama's confident knowledge of his lineage is precisely the thing that makes his American identity dubious.

Articles

The pope failed to take decisive action in response to clear evidence of a criminal underground in the priesthood.

Seeking government funds for a massive $1.2 billion new complex, powerful forces blocked Charity's reopening after Hurricane Katrina.

The Poet Laureate Consultant to the Library of Congress talks about spontaneous demonstrations, his hope for poetry, and why he doesn't read criticism anymore.

History is replete with peaceful role models like the “Frontier Gandhi” of colonial India.

Congratulations to The Nation’s new puzzlemeisters, elected by Nation puzzle-solvers to don the mantle of the late Frank W. Lewis, our cryptic-crossword constructor of six decades.

Books & the Arts

Book

Scientists, Sam Harris writes, are the saints of circumspection. If that’s true, then with his writing on religion and morality Harris breaks the mold.
 

Book

Elizabeth Bishop's Poems and Prose; James Gleick's The Information.

Film

Werner Herzog's Cave of Forgotten Dreams; Joe Wright's Hanna; Andreas Lust's The Robber; Daniel and Diego Vega's Octubre.

Crossword

From the May 1, 1976, issue.