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In This Week’s Issue

Issue No. 28

The View from Here

Is your president smarter than a fifth-grader? O.K., unless you’ve been held hostage in the U.S. Senate, or have just been lying in a coma, you already know the answer…

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An Open Letter to Harry and Meghan A distinguished historian and former newspaper editor offers the Canada-bound couple a bit of advice (which he knows will go unheeded)

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Small Talk
“His royally down-to-earth Highness will see you now.”

Where Iran Goes to Party For hipster émigrés in the capital of Georgia, East is West and West is East

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Epstein’s Island of Horrors Behind the sun and palm trees, Little St. James was a prison for under-age girls

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Full Stoppard Set in Vienna’s Jewish community in the early part of the 20th century, Leopoldstadt, says the playwright, is “not even close to being autobiographical.” And yet …

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Cinema Paradiso In her debut movie, Gianni Agnelli’s granddaughter tells the story of an eccentric family in early 1990s Italy

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Small Talk
“Sara, have you seen Ken?”

Putin on the Ritz To understand Russia’s leader, go back to Stalin

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Mayhem for the Ears Hunted, a fast-paced mystery podcast by the mastermind behind Law & Order, stars Parker Posey

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Bright Lights, Big City

A glossary of ways in which the spectrum can be layered, thickened, smoothed, and blended, the art of James Turrell has the sort of beauty that is fed by social media but, at the same time, floats above it. Since 2013, the year of the artist’s three colossal museum retrospectives (at LACMA, M.F.A. Houston, and the Guggenheim), Turrell’s work has inspired endless selfies, memes, and articles with titles like “A Quick Look at James Turrell, the 72-Year-Old Artist Who Inspired Drake’s ‘Hotline Bling’ Video.” Somehow, the retweets don’t cheapen the originals. READ ON

James Turrell’s Amesha Spentas is one of several light installations on show at Mexico City’s Museo Jumex through March 29.

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Small Talk

Drive into the Future Polestar 1, a high-end, limited-edition electric Volvo coupe, is the genuine Swedish article—underwritten by Chinese money

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Must-See Events

Cod Gods of Norway A long weekend on the Lofoten archipelago amid the art galleries, northern lights, and millionaire fishermen

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Balancing Act

The Baltimore Museum of Art made waves with its announcement that in 2020 it would buy art only by women. This would be a bold move for any museum, but it’s right in step for the B.M.A., an institution that has made an effort in recent years to champion the work of under-represented artists. In the past three years alone, more than 20 of its exhibitions exclusively featured nonwhite artists. The museum has also made a point of purchasing and exhibiting art by black women, and has recently acquired six pieces by the Philadelphia-born abstract painter Howardena Pindell, whose richly cosmological work explores race and gender. READ ON

Amy Sherald’s Planes, Rockets, and the Spaces in Between, one of several works purchased as part of the B.M.A.’s 2020 initiative to champion under-represented artists.

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Open Book

This Town A new book of photographs chronicles the evolution of New York City’s downtown over a century, from Radio Row to a post-9/11 World Trade Center

Olivia Chantecaille Start them young: on the best children’s books for budding activists

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Unmaking the Presidency: Donald Trump’s War on the World’s Most Powerful Office

by Susan Hennessey and Benjamin Wittes
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The Third Rainbow Girl: The Long Life of a Double Murder in Appalachia

by Emma Copley Eisenberg
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Murder, They Wrote

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Small Talk
“In fact, this is the largest seizure to date in the history of any senior community center.”

Werner Doehner The last survivor of the Hindenburg disaster

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Small Talk
“Is there something on my face? I’ve never had anybody watch this demonstration before.”

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Happy Chinese New Year 2020!
Is Edited By

Graydon Carter and Alessandra Stanley

Deputy Editors

Chris Garrett Michael Hainey George Kalogerakis Nathan King

Design Director

Angela Panichi

Chief Technology Officer

John Tornow

Books Editor

Jim Kelly

Arts Intel Report Editor

Laura Jacobs

Style Editor

Ashley Baker

Articles Editor

Ash Carter

Senior Editor

Julia Vitale


Cazzie David Emma Freud Walter Isaacson
Pico Iyer John Lahr James Wolcott

Photo Director

Ann Schneider

Cartoon Editor

Bob Mankoff

Music Supervisor

Randall Poster

Assistant Editors

Elena Clavarino Clementine Ford Alex Oliveira

International Editor

Isabelle Harvie-Watt

London Editor

Bridget Arsenault

Copy Editor

Adam Nadler

Photo Editor

Emine Gozde Sevim

Production Editor

H. Scott Jolley

Associate Editor

Elinor Schneider

Chief Operating Officer

Bill Keenan

Chief Marketing Officer

Emily Davis

Brand Partnerships

Anjali Lewis

Financial & Business Operations

Marc Leyer

Integrated Marketing Manager

Madeline Spates

Issue No. 28
January 25, 2020
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Issue No. 28
January 25, 2020