Books & the Arts

Imani Perry’s Capacious History of the South

While the South is often dismissed as a region catching up to the rest of the country, Perry’s new book demonstrates why it has always been the key to defining the promise and limits of American democracy.

Robert Greene II

The Messy Politics of the NBA

Professional basketball finds itself at a crossroads—between its image as a do-gooder and a history of self-serving contradictions.

Jeremy Gordon

Godard Was Cinema

Was the French filmmaker the single most important individual in the history of cinema?

J. Hoberman

From the Magazine

The Mysteries of Adam Smith

The Mysteries of Adam Smith

How to understand Adam Smith’s politics

Glory Liu
Is the Avant-Garde Still Avant-Garde?

Is the Avant-Garde Still Avant-Garde?

Today’s radical art movements can always congeal into tomorrow’s orthodoxy.

Stefan Collini
Jordan Peele’s Extraterrestrial Americana

Jordan Peele’s Extraterrestrial Americana

Telling a tale of cowboys, aliens, and Hollywood, the director’s third feature film, Nope, is his most successful cinematic spectacle to date.

Stephen Kearse

Literary Criticism

What Happened to Newspaper Book Reviewing?

What Happened to Newspaper Book Reviewing?

As a mode of recommendation, the newspaper fiction review has less to recommend it than ever before.

Frank Guan
Vladimir Sorokin’s Anti-Realism

Vladimir Sorokin’s Anti-Realism

For the Russian novelist, the end of Soviet literary and political culture marked the loss of a powerful foil.

Gregory Afinogenov
Ottessa Moshfegh’s Cruel Worlds

Ottessa Moshfegh’s Cruel Worlds

In her new novelMoshfegh explores the brutish world of the Middle Ages.

Elvia Wilk

B&A Newsletter

Best of Books & the Arts

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History & Politics

Cedric Robinson’s Radical Democracy

Cedric Robinson’s Radical Democracy

Rejecting the resignation of the 1970s and ’80s, Robinson found hope and resistance in the ruins of the American city.

Jared Loggins
The History Lessons of “My Brilliant Friend”

The History Lessons of “My Brilliant Friend”

The third season of the TV adaptation of Elena Ferrante’s multi-part novel dives into the tantalizing and heartbreaking story of Italy during the Years of Lead.

Katherine Hill
The Democrats at a Crossroads

The Democrats at a Crossroads

Michael Kazin’s new book examines the contradictory past and uncertain future of the Democratic Party.

Nicholas Lemann

Music

The Reflections of Kendrick Lamar

The Reflections of Kendrick Lamar

His intimate new album Mr. Morale and the Big Steppers lifts a mirror to his listeners.
Joshua Bennett

≠What do you call a group of people united by grief? A family. Or at least that’s the formulation that has been dancing through my mind as I pondered where to begin. This is, after all, the frame that Kendrick Lamar offers from the outset on his long-awaited fifth album,… Continue Reading >

Television and Films

“The Kids in the Hall” Stands the Test of Time

“The Kids in the Hall” Stands the Test of Time

In a recent reboot, the comedy troupe’s work remains as trenchant as ever.

Vikram Murthi
Group of adults lying by poolside, film crew giving instructions

The Reign of Reality TV

Danielle Lindemann’s True Story examines the pleasure and politics of what is quickly becoming the most influential genre of entertainment around the world.

Jake Nevins
David Cronenberg’s Tableaux of Pain and Pleasure

David Cronenberg’s Tableaux of Pain and Pleasure

His latest film, Crimes of the Future, continues a decades-long project to explore the limits of the body and the supposed rules of reality.

Beatrice Loayza

Dance

Nijinska’s Revolutionary Vision of Dance

Nijinska’s Revolutionary Vision of Dance

Lynn Garafola’s biography of the dancer and choreographer charts her globetrotting life and radical art. 
Jennifer Wilson

In 1905, the dancers of the Imperial Ballet in St. Petersburg went on strike. Their demands: higher wages, a five-day workweek, training in how to apply theatrical makeup, the right to wear their own pointe shoes. They elected a small delegation, which included star pupils Anna Pavlova and Vaslav Nijinsky,… Continue Reading >

Poems

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