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Christopher Hitchens

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Letter to an Old Contrarian

Most of the classes I had with Christopher Hitchens began the same way.
Christopher Hitchens, 1949–2011
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 23, 2011
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2010 Muzzle Awards on campus

Harvard and Yale universities felt the sting of the global economic collapse firsthand in 2009, as the endowments of these stalwart New England Ivy League members dropped by nearly a third. The schools didn’t fare much better in the free marketplace of
Harvard and Yale once again lead the way . . . for academic censorship
By HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  July 02, 2010

High-octane coverage

Despite admirable wall-to-wall coverage from the national mainstream press and unusually in-depth reports from network television and cable, the Huffington Post has emerged as perhaps the single best go-to source for developing news and wide-ranging com
The Huffington Post owns Gulf coverage; plus, that Hitchens memoir
By PETER KADZIS  |  June 04, 2010
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Ken Miller just can’t win

What’s an honorable man to do?
Brown biology professor attacked by Darwin-hating fundies and leftie atheists alike
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  March 05, 2010
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Greg Epstein, Atheist Superstar

Once an intellectual taboo, atheism has become one of the great growth industries of the third millennium.
Can Harvard's humanist chaplain save nonbelief from itself?
By ADAM REILLY  |  November 27, 2009
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Black beauty

August Wilson pioneered a magical realism all his own.
Fences, plus The Savannah Disputation and Mister Roberts
By CAROLYN CLAY  |  September 25, 2009


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Ideas and emotions

Grace takes place in the recent memories of the title character as well as in her difficult present. The basic concern here, which nags her like a toothache, is the non-existence of the divine.
The Gamm delivers Grace at a fever pitch
By BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  March 17, 2009
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100 Unsexiest Men of the Year Follow-Up

The problem with dropping our Unsexiest list in March of an election year is that we never know what kind of weasels, Republicans, and Republican weasels will urinate in America’s stream of consciousness down the final stretch.
  Because There Was an Election
By Chris Faraone  |  December 04, 2008
Required reading for Joe Fitzgerald

Required reading for Joe Fitzgerald


In today's Boston Herald, the inimitable Joe Fitzgerald wonders: why all the fuss over Sarah Palin? Then he offers some theories. Palin's detractors--"self-styled suffragettes," as...
By Adam Reilly  |  October 20, 2008
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Chick schtick

Sandra Bernhard was supposed to be performing in Boston this week. But that was before she challenged whether Sarah Palin would keep the baby if she became pregnant after being violated by a group of black men in New York.
The case of Sandra Bernhard vs. Sarah Palin begs the question: is it ever okay to use “rape” in a punch line?
By SARA FAITH ALTERMAN  |  October 16, 2008

Palin: off the reservation?


 That's the conclusion of Politico's Roger Simon:The real problem for McCain is that Palin is running a separate--and scary--campaign that does not seem to be...
By Adam Reilly  |  October 14, 2008


Should Americans Send Books to Iraq?

Sending books to Iraq to promote civic culture in Iraq might help you to sleep more soundly. But do small-scale efforts make more than a symbolic impact?
Foreign relations
By A.J. PACITTI  |  August 20, 2008
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Photos: The surreal spectacle of North Korea's Mass Games

While the world’s eyes are focused on the Olympic Games in Beijing, just 500 miles away another major sporting extravaganza will kick off in the more austere communist capital of Pyongyang. The Mass Games, held twice annually in North Korea, is the most
While everyone else watches the Olympics, Asia's weirdest sporting event transpires in the world's most secretive country
By MICHAEL GAO  |  August 07, 2008
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Second thoughts

Amis hasn’t had this much press since he fell out with Julian Barnes.
Amis yes and no
By JAMES PARKER  |  June 02, 2008
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Don't tase me, bro

2007 was the year that viral humor hit critical mass.
The year in would-be catch phrases
By JAMES PARKER  |  December 21, 2007
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The Mist

Frank Darabont’s adaptation of the Stephen King novella spawns a horror beyond human comprehension. Yes, I’m talking about another performance by Marcia Gaye Harden.
Ridiculously alright
By PETER KEOUGH  |  November 20, 2007


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Angels in America

The publication this month of the selected correspondence of Mother Teresa has revealed that, for many years, the Saint of Calcutta entertained significant doubts about the existence of God.
If the world’s saintliest woman can have doubts about God, surely the world’s most cynical man can also question his non-belief?
By JAMES PARKER  |  September 19, 2007

Bewilderedbeests

In  two   weeks  of “Talking Politics” columns about Massachusetts politics, David S. Bernstein has left us bewildered about what candidates think.
Letters to the Boston editor: September 14, 2007
By BOSTON PHOENIX LETTERS  |  September 12, 2007
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Dance Monkey: Lizz Winstead

It will be called Harry Pott-him .
A visiting comic in the hot seat
By SARA FAITH ALTERMAN  |  July 16, 2007
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Holy War!

There’s no doubt about it: right now, God is on the side of the atheists.
A new army of atheists is taking no prisoners in its battle with God and his self-appointed faith dealers
By JAMES PARKER  |  June 06, 2007
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Real-world follies

For hard rock, heated debate, child-care tips, and latex puppetry, 2006 was a banner year in television. Who says the culture’s going to the dogs?
A year in television
By JAMES PARKER  |  December 18, 2006


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Windbags of change

Regardless of which major party sits astride Capitol Hill, Washington is a conservative city. Not in ideological terms, mind you.
A front-row seat at the midterm elections
By CHRIS LEHMANN  |  November 08, 2006
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My Chomsky

Had Groucho Marx been a Marxist and stopped in the middle of A Night at the Opera to praise Karl Marx, the effect might have been a little like that which greeted Venezuela’s president Hugo Chavez after he lauded Noam Chomsky at the UN General Assembly
As the lefty linguist’s most recent book rises to the top of Amazon’s bestseller list, a partisan explains why Noam Chomsky’s all that
By GEORGE SCIALABBA  |  September 27, 2006

Flashbacks: September 29, 2006

These selections, culled from our back files, were compiled by Dan Peleschuk, Ian Sands, and Eva Wolchover.
The Boston Phoenix has been covering the trends and events that shape our times since 1966.
By PHOENIX FLASHBACKS  |  September 27, 2006