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France: Right Rumbles, Left Wobbles  

This month’s “Manif pour tous” was most obviously against a law called Mariage pour tous (Marriage for All). But something bigger is stirring. Is it, as Le Monde put it, “The Awakening of Reactionary France”?



The Values of Dissent  

Do you remember the proverbial “herd of independent minds”? That was critic Harold Rosenberg’s description, decades ago, of the New York intellectuals. These days some packs are still (alas!) on the left, some on the right, and some run somewhere …











The Damnation of Dr. Atomic  

Can an anti-war opera be reactionary? This question crossed my mind as I watched the recent production of John Adams’s Doctor Atomic at New York’s Metropolitan Opera. “Reactionary” usually means backward-looking or backward—doing, but it implies more—a response to ideas …