Readers are mourning a fallen Monterey cypress tree, said to have inspired the classic Dr. Seuss book The Lorax (once considered a very dangerous book). “The tree was estimated to be about 80 to 100 years old,” according to Tim Graham, a spokesman for the San Diego Parks and Recreation Department, who added that there is “no definitive cause on why it fell.” Let’s hope a Truffula Seed is found quickly before things get worse.
In the latest issue of The Boston Review, Elaine Scarry reviews Steven Pinker’s
The Better Angels of Our Nature. Pinker argues that literature, by bolstering man’s empathy, has lead to huge reductions in worldwide violence, a thesis that sounds dangerously close to the absurd pop-science of Jonathan Gottschall’s The Storytelling Animal.
The Economist digs into the stupid “debate” over Philip Roth’s International Booker win.
Recommended Reading: Jen Calleja offers a reading list to soothe your Brexit blues at The Quietus. “Like many people, I went through the five stages of Brexit – ‘oh well’, manic laughter, crying, rage, existential despair – in one day, and in the days that followed felt numb, nauseous, in doubt. But now it’s time to climb out of the mourning pit and work even harder than before at holding on to a European identity and keeping channels open to personal and literary dialogues with our European neighbours.”