Culture / Newsy

An Arab Writers’ Controversy, Earth Day Hope and the Mystery of Pets

What We’re Reading

BY // 04.22.16

Our editors are a diverse lot, and are constantly perusing a long and broad list of publications. Fashion? Art? Architecture? Culinary studies? Semantics? It’s all here. In What We’re Reading, PaperCity shares the wealth.

“I wonder why Arab prisons are not full of writers,” asks the poet Adonis. “I wonder why, because it means that Arab writers are not doing their jobs.” The pen is mightier than the sword, after all, no? Click here for a great interview with a man who has his mind on the future of Islam.

Non-human animals fascinate us. We keep them as pets, we admire them, and we are more and more often trying to get into their heads. What do they think? How do they think? When monkeys dip sweet potatoes into the sea to make them more salty, does this demonstrate thought? A fascinating look at that subject can be found here.

I once made a pilgrimage to New Canaan, Connecticut, to pay homage to Philip Johnson, a man whose work and vision I admire greatly. Daily I walked past the Lipstick Building, and I make it a point to see as many of his projects as I can. Outside of New Canaan, I caught a glimpse of the artist himself, walking around the Glass House. I struck up a conversation with the caretaker at the time — the property was not yet a museum — and he gave me a private tour of the grounds, allowing me to get close to the residence. I consider that afternoon one of the best I’ve ever had. If you, like me, read everything you can about Johnson, you’ll want to add this to your reading list.

Finally, it’s Earth Day. And while we have much to be concerned about when it comes to the environment — global warming, floods, storms, drought, hunger, war — it’s not all bad news. Try this on for size, and here’s to hope!


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