In This Issue
Explore the October 1979 print edition below. Or to discover more writing from the pages of The Atlantic, browse the full archive.
If most people want to drive cars, how will subways save fuel? Did OPEC decide which states should have gasoline shortages—or is it possible that OPEC is not the villain? How does it happen that the price of gasoline (in uninflated dollars) has dropped continuously since 1940? An economist raises these and other iconoclastic questions about the "energy crisis."
At what point does autobiography graduate into memory shaped by art? How does a writer know when to stop telling it as it is or was and make of truth a superior fiction? Readers and writers alike perennially ponder such questions.
As enrollments dwindle and competition for tuition-paying students intensifies, more and more colleges and universities are resorting to hard-sell strategies which in some cases impinge upon the traditional standards and canons of higher education
Six years ago, Michigan’s entire population of 9 million discovered it had been endangered by chemical contamination of livestock feed sold to farmers all over the state. The full dimensions of this agricultural disaster are now becoming evident, and at least 40 million people may be affected.
Twenty years after the Castro revolution, Cuba is a country of the young (65 percent of the population under 25), of hard work and meager material rewards. Conditions for the many have surely improved, and Fidel Castro’s charisma still holds strong sway. “He delivers had news— and everybody claps.”
Some $1 22 billion—$600 for each American—goes into the defense budget this year and the expenditures will grow larger in years to come. Yet critics on both sides—those who would spend more and those who would spend less—share a nervous concern that the nation’s military security is inadequate, and some experts fear that the United States has become shackled to high technology that may fail when put to the ultimate test. A crucial debate is under way, not only about how much to spend but about how better to spend it.