Contents | March 2002

The Atlantic Monthly | March 2002
In This Issue

ere the pre-Columbian Americas the sparsely populated domains described in the history books—or a highly cultivated civilization with millions of inhabitants? Was the Amazon rain forest created and managed by a sophisticated society? Charles C. Mann ("1491") is an Atlantic correspondent.

Robert D. Kaplan ("The World in 2005") calls attention to powerful global phenomena that may seem unconnected to the war on terrorism but will inevitably intersect with it. Kaplan has been an Atlantic correspondent for more than a decade. His most recent book is Warrior Politics: Why Leadership Demands a Pagan Ethos (2001).

Over the past decade the United States has been riveted by violent crimes committed by seemingly ordinary teenagers. Ron Powers ("The Apocalypse of Adolescence") examines some of these cases, including that of Robert Tulloch and James Parker, the Vermont youths charged with the murder of two Dartmouth College professors. Powers is the author of twelve books, including Tom and Huck Don't Live Here Anymore: Childhood and Murder in the Heart of America (2001). He received the 1973 Pulitzer Prize for criticism.

Iceberg harvesting has become one of Newfoundland's few new growth industries, as producers of beer, vodka, and bottled water seek new ways to exploit the cravings of the purity-obsessed. Wayne Curtis ("The Iceberg Wars"), a contributing editor of Preservation magazine, lives in Maine. He is at work on a book about the history of rum.

Marjorie Kemper ("God's Goodness") has published stories in New Orleans Review and Greensboro Review. Her first novel, 'Til That Good Day, will be published later this year.

This month in The Agenda: The Atlantic's editor, Michael Kelly, considers the consequences of poking at walruses (the economic kind); David Brooks explains how his anticipated midlife crisis will be good for America; Jonathan Rauch shows why Americans have a big stake in the European Union's upcoming constitutional debate; Margaret Talbot looks at privatized eugenics; The Atlantic's national correspondent, James Fallows, describes the intellectual evolution of Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defense; P. J. O'Rourke relishes the recent centenary statement by 103 Nobel laureates; David Carr discerns a throwback to the nineteenth century in The New York Sun, a newspaper about to make its debut; Jeffrey Tayler explains why Muslims in largely Islamic Tatarstan don't care about Osama bin Laden or Afghanistan; and Peter Landesman recounts a chilling conversation with an influential Pakistani.

Jacki Lyden ("An Ireland of Legend") follows a 365-mile trail around Ireland in pursuit of the tempestuous Queen Maeve. Lyden is a senior correspondent and a host for National Public Radio and the author of the memoir Daughter of the Queen of Sheba (1997).

Stephen Budiansky ("Missing Pieces") reports on the growing number of classical-music stations that are restyling themselves to provide middlebrow background music. Budiansky is a correspondent for The Atlantic. His next book, The Character of Cats, will be published in June.

Fleur de sel, the crème de la crème of salts, is rich, sweet, and expensive. Corby Kummer ("The Cream of the Salt Pan"), an Atlantic senior editor, travels to Portugal and discovers an affordable source. In his column Palate at Large, Kummer observes culinary perfection at the Manhattan restaurant Daniel.

Peter Davison ("Poetry Out Loud") describes the movement of poetry in the United States from the page to the stage. Davison is The Atlantic's poetry editor. His most recent book of poems, Breathing Room, won the Massachusetts Book Award in 2001.

Claire Messud ("The Beauty of the Conjuring") surveys the dazzling prose and destructive force of Ian McEwan's new novel, Atonement. Messud is a visiting writer at Amherst College and the author of the novels When the World Was Steady (1995) and The Last Life (1999) and a book of novellas, The Hunters (2001).

Caitlin Flanagan ("Leaving It to the Professionals") wades through the literature of the anti-clutter industry and concludes that the modern cult of simplifying has nothing on good, old-fashioned housekeeping. Flanagan is a frequent contributor to the magazine.

Brooke Allen ("Thrilling Desperation") reviews Edna O'Brien's latest novel, In the Forest. Allen is a frequent contributor to The New York Times Book Review, The Wall Street Journal, and The New Criterion.

In the late 1990s Gilles Kepel, one of France's leading commentators on Islamic affairs, argued that Islamic radicalism was in decline. Walter Laqueur ("A Failure of Intelligence") reviews Kepel's newly updated book Jihad (2000), a work of considerable value despite its shortsightedness. Laqueur, a professor emeritus of political science at Georgetown University, is the author of numerous books, including Guerrilla Warfare (1976), A History of Terrorism (1977), and Generation Exodus: The Fate of Young Jewish Refugees From Nazi Germany (2001).

Copyright © 2002 by The Atlantic Monthly Group. All rights reserved.
The Atlantic Monthly; March 2002; In This Issue; Volume 289, No. 3; 8.