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Posts tagged "History"


Anno Domini and the New Era

The first day of April this year brings the announcement in Japan that that country’s calendar cycle is about to re-set to Year One. The matter is obscure outside of Japan itself and its immediate neighbors, but you can see the option for a Japanese calendar—cued to the beginning of each emperor’s reign—on iPhones and […]

Better Off Now Than Ever? A History of Happiness

In a recent New Republic article entitled Happyism: the Creepy New Economics of Pleasure, economist and historian Deirdre McCloskey provides a refreshing historical perspective on the contemporary world’s obsession with happiness. For better or worse, it seems that personal happiness has increasingly become the (explicit) driving force behind human lives. While selfishness is of course […]

The End Is the Beginning Is the End, Part I: A Review of Julian Barnes’ “The Sense of an Ending”

There are a million reasons to read Julian Barnes’ novella The Sense of an Ending, but I can think of only one reason not to: you have special disdain for the delicacy of language struck by a fine author operating with prodigious grace at the height of his powers.  Yes, that annoys me, too.  And, […]