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Reviews

'Elvis's Army': Training for a War That Never Came

A masterful look at the US Army between Korea and Vietnam: stumbling into an uncertain future, amid racial integration, endless paperwork, and nuclear-armed jeeps.

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Harvard University Pres

Reviews

The "Good Old Days" of TV Are Happening Right Now

Why American television is better now than it's ever been -- and the unexpected paths by which it got there.

Reviews

Every F***ing Thing You Need to Know About Profanity

Why "jeepers creepers" should be more profane than any word you (still) can't say on television, why it isn't, and why that matters.

Books

'Track Changes': History Written on Glass

A dense, scholarly history of machine-made literary magic: effortless revisions, swappable files, perfect printouts, and what authors did with them.

Reviews

Next Stop Mars? ... Maybe

This breathless celebration of space travel in the post-shuttle era is long on beautiful pictures, but short on hard truths.

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K2 Films, Giant Screen Films

Reviews

New Dinosaurs, Old Plot

Jurrasic World is big, loud movie with a smaller, quieter movie inside of it, peeking out at unexpected moments.

Reviews

'Tomorrowland' Captures Sci-fi’s Shiny Surfaces but Misses Its Geeky Heart

Brad Bird’s message, with which he clubs the audience about the head and shoulders, is that we could have had jet packs, space travel, and all of that by now -- if only we hadn’t stopped believing.

Television

The Complex Man Behind "Uncle Walt"

The rise (and rise) of Walt Disney, from starving artist to visionary filmmaker to union-busting studio boss to family-entertainment tycoon.

Reviews

Who Made the Machines That Remade the World?

Walter Isaacson's The Innovators explores the history of the digital age as told through the intertwined lives of the men and women who created it.

Books

On Chasing an Enemy That's Too Small to See

Confronting Contagion tries to capture the 3,000-year history behind a modern scientific breakthrough: the discovery that tiny organisms invade our bodies and make us sick.

Reviews

The World(s) That Video Made

Video Revolutions is a brief, brilliant inquiry into the history of a complex, contested medium.

Reviews

What Is Permissible in the Name of Science, Wartime Expediency, and National Security?

"Our Germans beat their Germans," someone quipped when Wernher von Braun's team of rocketeers put Americans on the Moon, but Operation Paperclip reveals that US involvement with ex-Nazi scientists was far deeper, and far darker.

Reviews

The Industrial Revolution 2.0

We live in a world filled with powerful, compact, networked computers -- a world that those computers are about to transform.

Books

Modernity, Rising: 'Lifted: A Cultural History of the Elevator'

Lifted is an absorbing exploration into how the introduction of elevators into buildings transformed cities and the experience of living and working in them.

Books

'A Short History of the Twentieth Century' Is Briskly Written, Fiercely Opinionated, and Cranky

Particularly in the later chapters, Lukacs' 75-year century leaves readers vulnerable to conceptual whiplash and the author vulnerable to rhetorical absurdity.

Film

Hollywood, History, and the Art of the Big Anachronism

Turkey legs may take the place of hot dogs, but even in the Middle Ages—at least the version of it in films such as A Knight’s Tale—fans still do The Wave.


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