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The New Yorker

The New Yorker December 2, 2013

Founded in 1925, The New Yorker publishes the best writers of its time and has received more National Magazine Awards than any other magazine, for its groundbreaking reporting, authoritative analysis, and creative inspiration. The New Yorker takes readers beyond the weekly print magazine with the web, mobile, tablet, social media, and signature events. The New Yorker is at once a classic and at the leading edge.

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47 Issues

in this issue

1 min.

IAN JOHNSON (“IN THE AIR,” P. 32) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and the author of “Wild Grass: Three Stories of Change in Modern China.” He divides his time between Beijing and Berlin. NICK PAUMGARTEN (“DEALER’s HAND,” P. 38) is a staff writer. AMY DAVIDSON (COMMENT, P. 21), a senior editor at the magazine, writes the Close Read blog on newyorker.com. CALVIN TRILLIN (“MOZZARELLA STORY,” P. 26) has been writing for The New Yorker since 1963. “Dogfight: The 2012 Presidential Campaign in Verse” is his most recent book. TOM O’DONNELL (SHOUTS & MURMURS, P. 30) is a freelance writer. His young-adult novel, “Space Rocks!,” comes out in February. MARY JO BANG (POEM, P. 42) has published six volumes of poetry. The paperback edition of her translation of Dante’s Inferno came out in September. RACHEL AVIV (“WHERE…

3 min.
the mail

MOCK THE VOTE George Packer, in his analysis of the poor participation rates in the November elections, writes that voters are increasingly cynical (Comment, November 18th). I am one of those disillusioned voters. The municipal election here in Norman, Oklahoma, involved a single question, a yes-or-no vote to, yet again, pass a utility rate increase. I am sure that the city council debated the issue, and that the city planner’s office had input, along with local bankers, bond underwriters, real-estate developers, and the Chamber of Commerce. The argument in favor of an increase was that much of the change would be geared toward usage and was therefore fair. But usage is not strictly correlated to income: a wealthy person living alone in a mansion may end up paying proportionately less than…

41 min.

THE STUDIO MUSEUM in Harlem’s new exhibition, “The Shadows Took Shape,” borrows its title from a poem by the jazz musician Sun Ra, whose visionary aesthetic—part sci-fi, part sorcery—was named Afrofuturism after his death. Twenty-six artists testify to the movement’s ongoing relevance and its global reach, from Nairobi, where Cyrus Kabiru made fantastical hybrids of eyewear and masks out of scrap metal, glass beads, and bottle caps, to Brooklyn, where Saya Woolfalk (pictured above, in the second row from the top, with other artists in the show) directed an inspired video, with music by D.J. Spooky, that seems to capture the color-splashed rituals of outer-planetary mystics who have landed on Earth. ART CLASSICAL MUSIC & DANCE MOVIES | FOOD & DRINK THE THEATRE | NIGHT LIFE THE HOLIDAYS PHOTOGRAPH BY CHRISTAAN FELBER ART MUSEUMS…

3 min.
movies: a star is reborn

SHORT AND MUSCULAR, elegant and acrobatic, the French silent-comedy star Max Linder was one of the cinema’s great prodigies. Hired by a major producer in Paris in 1905—at the age of twenty-one—and quickly tapped to write, direct, and star in his own films, the conservatory-trained actor soon became the new medium’s biggest international celebrity. After he was wounded in the First World War, Linder came to the United States, where he directed his three features, jewels of the silent era. After his death, in 1925, he was largely forgotten, and most of his five hundred films were lost. The retrospective of his work at French Institute Alliance Française (Dec. 3-17) is a welcome reminder of his place in the pantheon. The series offers six of Linder’s prewar short films, which introduced…

1 min.
bar tab: the leadbelly

14 Orchard St. (646-596-9142) This cocktail-and-oyster bar on the Lower East Side has an enviable pedigree: it shares owners (and a block) with the “seasonal British” fashion-crowd favorite the Fat Radish and a set designer with Wes Anderson. Order a hummus plate, and an elegant array of creamy dip, crispy flatbread, and delicate crudités (radish, cauliflower, top-on carrot) is delivered swiftly from across the street, in a waxed-cardboard box. There are also crab-avocado toasts, burrata, and four types of oysters, shucked on the premises. The room is a cave of carefully chosen curiosities, from the curved brass bar to the collection of vintage suitcases to the terrariums dangling in the bathrooms. The crowd, a young, stylish, international mix, might as well be extras. But the cocktails are unfussy and topnotch, classier…

2 min.
tables for two: charlie bird

5 King St. (212-235-7133) “WE JUST WANT TO BE your favorite neighborhood joint.” So says Charlie Bird, a new Italian-American restaurant off Sixth Avenue in SoHo, in a lengthy manifesto on its Web site. It also says that “Charlie Bird means New York,” and “Just like you, we dream of ditching work to sip rosé in the park and of hot summer nights all year long.” (Do New Yorkers, in fact, dream of hot summer nights all year long? Maybe the ones who don’t live in fourth-floor walkups do.) What does it mean these days to be a neighborhood joint in downtown Manhattan, where on a recent Friday night a twenty-something waiting at the bar held a slate-colored Kelly bag, and the preponderance of four-inch heels suggests a general lack of familiarity…