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The New Yorker December 10, 2018

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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Joan Acocella (“Funny Peculiar,” p. 52) has written for The New Yorker since 1992 and became the magazine’s dance critic in 1998. She is at work on a biography of Mikhail Baryshnikov.Zoë Heller (“Perchance to Dream,” p. 24) contributes to The New York Review of Books and has published three novels, including “Notes on a Scandal” and “The Believers.”Louis Menand (A Critic at Large, p. 68) has been a staff writer since 2001. He teaches at Harvard.Emma Allen (The Talk of the Town, p. 21) is the magazine’s cartoon editor and edits humor for Williams (Fiction, p. 58) has published four novels and five books of stories, including “99 Stories of God” and “The Visiting Privilege.”Laura Miller (Books, p. 74), the author of “The Magician’s Book: A Skeptic’s Adventures…

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the mail

SONIC BOOMIn discussing the health problems that have afflicted U.S. officials in Cuba, Adam Entous and Jon Lee Anderson explain the theory that “the cause was a device that emitted radio frequencies or electromagnetic pulses” to create cavitation, or bubbling, in the inner ear (“Havana Syndrome,” November 19th). I am a neuroscientist specializing in technology, and I have been following this case with a distinguished group of biological scientists from around the world. In our opinion, it’s implausible that electromagnetic pulses were the cause, since focussing such pulses on a victim’s brain would require very sophisticated technology with multiple antennae arranged around the target. I greatly respect Douglas Smith’s research group, and I have no reason to doubt the veracity of its publication in the Journal of the American Medical…

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goings on about town: this week

(SANTI VISALLI/GETTY;)Liv Ullmann burst into prominence with Ingmar Bergman’s “Persona,” from 1966, in which she plays an actress fallen mute; her performance, with its extremes of vulnerability and ferocity, is central to the film and to the time. Ullmann made nine more movies with Bergman, acted in forty-eight other films, and directed five features. She appears at BAM on Dec. 6 for her eightieth-birthday celebration, which includes a discussion with her and a screening of Jan Troell’s historical drama “The Emigrants,” from 1971, for which she received the first of her two Oscar nominations.NIGHT LIFEMusicians and night-club proprietors lead complicated lives; it’s advisable to check in advance to confirm engagements.Pharoah SandersBirdlandIn a collaboration with John Coltrane, circa 1965-66, Pharoah Sanders drew unearthly tones from his tenor saxophone that could make…

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tables for two: taiwanese new wave

The other day at 886, a new Taiwanese restaurant on St. Mark’s Place, I couldn’t help but notice that the two men seated next to me seemed focussed less on the meal in front of them than on discussing where else in the city they could get Taiwanese food. “Have you been to Ho Foods?” one asked. He hadn’t, so his friend filled him in on the tiny shop, also new, which specializes in braised-beef noodle soup, a national dish of Taiwan. Another diner, overhearing, chimed in.Who could blame them? In New York, Taiwanese food has long been a limited commodity, and we’ve been missing out on a lot: the small island has an incredibly rich food culture, which overlaps with cuisines from some regions of mainland China and is…

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comment: political borders

President Trump has always had an odd idea of what constitutes strength. This was evident again last week, when, a day after U.S. Border Patrol agents fired tear gas at a crowd of Central American migrants, as some tried to rush across the border from Tijuana, he boasted about the incident at a rally. “Frankly, if we didn’t show them strength and a strong border,” he said, “you would have hundreds of thousands of people pouring into our country.” Strength is a display, in other words, meant to demoralize the vulnerable. “We are doing a job,” Trump added. “We’re doing what’s right.”He was wrong on both counts. It is not a President’s job to try to renounce a law that promises even undocumented people already in this country an opportunity…

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homecoming: mannahatta

In 1641, a Dutchman in what was then New Netherland discovered that his hogs had been slain. A militia was roused to pursue the suspected killers: the Lenape, resident Native Americans. The story was perhaps our country’s original fake news—the pig slayers were probably colonists—but the fallout for the Lenape was real. Colonists massacred the Lenape encamped on what is now the Lower East Side and Jersey City. Over time, violence and disease forced many survivors to move west, and the Lenape lost the island of Mannahatta and its surroundings.On a recent Sunday in November, the Lenape elder George Stonefish was at the Park Avenue Armory, to host a powwow. He’d invited all members of the contemporary Lenape nation, who are spread out on reservations from Oklahoma to Ontario. (The…