In Post & Riposte:

Homeland Insecurity
How much faith do you have in technology's ability to protect us from terrorism? How concerned are you about the erosion of civil liberties?

Competing for Timelessness
Do you agree that architecture competitions do not necessarily result in interesting—or even tolerable—architecture? Weigh in on Witold Rybczynski's article in the September Atlantic.

What are your feelings about Martha Stewart? Is she someone to be admired? Reviled? Envied? Pitied? Share your thoughts on Caitlin Flanagan's September article.

See the complete forum index.

THE ATLANTIC MONTHLY | Volume 290 No. 2 | September 2002
(Articles with headlines in gray are unavailable online at the request of the author.)

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September 2002 cover Letters to the Editor

by Cullen Murphy

The Agenda
What Now? by Michael Kelly
A Man on a Gray Horse by David Brooks
Rejection Sustained by Randall Kennedy
Confidence Itself by Walter Kirn
The Information Wars by Mary Graham
Bucking the Herd by Arthur Allen


American Ground: Unbuilding the World Trade Center
This month's installment, "The Rush to Recover," is the second part of a three-part series
[Web version contains excerpts only]
by William Langewiesche
Inside the Ruins: William Langewiesche, the author of "American Ground," on life at the World Trade Center site after the towers fell. [Web only]
Special Report: Homeland Insecurity
One of the nation's top security experts—the cryptography guru and cyberhero Bruce Schneier—warns that the nation's approach to protecting itself is all wrong, and could actually make America more vulnerable than ever. This misguided approach is rapidly being hardened into law
by Charles C. Mann
A Primer on Public-key Encryption: Charles Mann explains public-key encryption and traces its history. [Web only]

Technology and Security: Four recent Atlantic articles consider the drawbacks of relying too heavily on technology to protect us from terrorism. [Web only]
Letter From Egypt
Our correspondent can barely understand his own civilization, a few centuries old. Now he confronts Egypt, curing for millennia, where traffic, bureaucracy, couch design, and cemetery living have reached levels of true connoisseurship
by P. J. O'Rourke
All People Are Crazy: P. J. O'Rourke on the Middle East, the universality of the absurd, and his beef with Mark Twain. [Web only]
Elegies An anthology of poems
Mercy A poem by Stanley Plumly [audio]
The Reunification Center A poem by D. Nurkse [audio]
Lauds for St. Germaine Cousin (1579-1601) A poem by Christianne Balk [audio]
The Treatment A short story by Roxana Robinson

Literary Lives Jean-Paul Sartre
by Edward Sorel


Pursuits and Retreats
TRAVEL: The Romance of Big Sur by Barbara Wallraff
FOOD: Maine Certified by Corby Kummer
PALATE AT LARGE: Il Champ by Corby Kummer
ARCHITECTURE: The Bilbao Effect by Witold Rybczynski

Books and Critics
Lightness at Midnight
Koba the Dread: Laughter and the Twenty Million by Martin Amis, reviewed by Christopher Hitchens

New & Noteworthy
A cautionary classic; the subject of motherhood made new and fine; Ambrose Bierce's Civil War

Home Alone
Martha Inc.: The Incredible Story of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia by Christopher Byron, and Martha Stewart by Charles J. Shields, reviewed by Caitlin Flanagan

Loss and Endurance
Family Matters by Rohinton Mistry, reviewed by Brooke Allen

The Puzzler by Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon

Word Court by Barbara Wallraff

Cover photograph by Andrea Booher/FEMA.

All material copyright © 2002 by The Atlantic Monthly Group. All rights reserved.