“Literary misery was highest in the 1940s, they found, with the 1980s narrowly in second place, and the 1920s in third. Their research, published yesterday in PLOS ONE, found that an increase in frequency of miserable language in these decades correlated to the economic misery of the respective previous decades.”
“Under EU law, buyers already have the right to cancel purchases made through a website or outside the seller’s business premises where the buyer is not able to inspect the goods before the sale. Until now, auctions—whether conducted in the saleroom or online—were excluded as it was thought the right to cancel would encourage irresponsible bidding and could leave auction houses vulnerable to covering costs.”
“People might not have wanted to buy Mein Kampf at Borders or have it delivered to their home or displayed on their living room bookshelf, let alone get spotted reading it on a subway. But judging by hundreds of customer comments online, readers like that digital copies can be quietly perused then dropped into a folder or deleted.”
“Today science and the “philosophy of mind”—its thoughtful assistant, which is sometimes smarter than the boss—are threatening Western culture with the exact opposite of humanism. Call it roboticism. Man is the measure of all things, Protagoras said. Today we add, and computers are the measure of all men.”
“The English National Ballet School has been accused of putting pressure on its students to lose weight in a controversial message on Facebook. A call for students … to ‘work off” Christmas calories appeared on the school’s Facebook page … It comes despite widespread industry concern about the issue of eating disorders among dancers.”
A Brooklyn theater company is mounting a site-specific production of Albee’s The Death of Bessie Smith – “which by most evidence is based on an apocryphal account of how Smith, the black, early-20th-century blues singer, was denied treatment at a whites-only hospital” – at a struggling community medical center.