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My Madness

From the January 2023 Print Edition

My brother Peter was a wondrous boy, the youngest, brightest, and bounciest of three kids: IQ 165, boundless curiosity, confidence, and mental energy, bold in the best sense, and less than optimally protective of life and limb, fearing neither God nor man. A school exercise he wrote when he was five . . . . Continue Reading »

Devils in the Mind

From Web Exclusives

Aldous Huxley was in certain respects a modern disenchanted intellectual, and he had no use for actual demons; but there are persons as serious and sane as he was who can state with authority that demons and demonic possession are real. Continue Reading »

Churchill in Barbary

From the March 2022 Print Edition

Small wars, the kind that pit a superpower against an apparently overmatched enemy, are easy to slip into and can be hard to get out of. But it need not always be so. The British in their imperial magnificence at the turn of the twentieth century fought wars against Islamic fanatics on the northwest . . . . Continue Reading »

The Genius of Wordsworth

From the December 2020 Print Edition

“I wandered lonely as a cloud.” So begins a famous poem of William Wordsworth’s, one that was often taught to schoolchildren back when memorizing poetry was part of education. The poet comes upon “a crowd, / A host, of golden daffodils.” The flowers flutter and dance before him, their . . . . Continue Reading »

Russian Purgatory

From the June/July 2020 Print Edition

The Russian soul. The phrase serves as shorthand for Russia’s national character, after the manner of American innocence, French arrogance, Italian dolce far niente, and what used to be the English stiff upper lip. Russians are reputed to feel more than the rest of us do, think deep thoughts . . . . Continue Reading »