January/February 2006

Paul Elie, "The Year of Two Popes"; William Langewiesche, "The Point of No Return"; Garrison Keillor, "Anthem"; Caitlin Flanagan on nice girls and oral sex; Clive Crook on greedy CEOs; P. J. O'Rouke on polling teens; and much more.

The Atlantic - January/February 2006

Also in this issue

77 North Washington Street

Letters to the editor


What to watch for in the weeks ahead

Other articles in this issue

Lincoln for President

October 1860

How Books Become Immortal

September 1891

What College Graduates Owe America

August 1894

The Purpose of Poetry

February 1964

The Twelve Tribes of American Politics

Mapping America's Values

How our cultural attitudes stack up against ?those of other countries?


The Anthem

If famous poets had written "The Star-Spangled Banner"

North and South

Selections from the notebooks of Elizabeth Bishop


The Year of Two Popes

How Joseph Ratzinger stepped into the shoes of John Paul II—and what it means for the Catholic Church
Interviews: Paul Elie, the author of "The Year of Two Popes," talks about Ratzinger's rise and his own extraordinary experiences researching the story

The Point of No Return

First Pakistan's A.Q. Khan showed that any country could have made a nuclear bomb. Then he showed—not once but three times—why the nuclear trade will never be shut down
Interviews: William Langewiesche on nuclear proliferation—and why the U.S. is powerless to stop it.

The George W. Bush Presidential Library

An unauthorized preview, with never-before -seen drawings of the interior

Politics & Presidents

The first in a series of archival excerpts in honor of the magazine's 150th anniversary.

The Values Racket

by the Editors

Why the Culture War Is the Wrong War

It's time to challenge the metaphor—and the easy caricatures of left and right that sustain it

Tribal Relations

How Americans really sort out on cultural and religious issues—and what it means for our politics

Misfit America

Is our evolving national character a liability in our foreign relations?

Executive Privilege

The CEOs of too many public companies enjoy the power and rewards of ownership without the risks.

Two Cheers for Hypocrisy

As the Gallup Organization has discovered, the young are another country—and one day it's going to be ours


The Perils of Primacy

When too much power means not enough security

Company, Left

There's something different about the latest crop of military veterans running for Congress

Man Versus Mine

Iraqi insurgents have perfected the use of lethal explosives, with profound implications for our military operations in Iraq

Whose Court Is It Really?

John Roberts is the new chief justice, but the Supreme Court isn't his to lead just yet

Primary Sources

The religion effect; a less violent world; one (very good) reason to resist early retirement


The Not-So-Second City

Chicago Architecture and Design, by Jay Pridmore and George A. Larson; Chicago Architecture: Histories, Revisions, Alternatives, edited by Charles Waldheim and Katerina Rüedi Ray; Building Jerusalem: The Rise and Fall of the Victorian City

Are You There God? It's Me, Monica

How nice girls got so casual about oral sex

Mommies Dearest

Top literary reasons why it sucks to have chic parents

New fiction

The Accidental by Ali Smith

New Fiction

Arthur & George, by Julian Barnes

Downhill All the Way

An adroit new history of the British Empire in the post-Victorian era

A Close Read

Leaving Home, by Anita Brookner


Nova Scotia, Mon Amour

The province's quirks and inaccessibility are its very charms

The Singing Epidemic

All of a sudden everybody wants to be a jazz singer—and a few are actually good at it

Domestic Reserves

Americans no longer need to look abroad to satisfy their need for oil—Tuscan-style olive oil, that is

Who's Who

A selective index to this month's issue


Where the Wild Things Go

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.


Adults Need Playtime Too

When was the last time you played your favorite childhood game?


Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.


The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air



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