6.21.2009 New York Times Digest

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1. “Into the Fray”

“Where the critics of copyright perceive the Internet age as a potential Renaissance being blocked by overconsolidated corporations, Helprin worries, plausibly, that the spirit of perpetual acceleration threatens to carry all before it, frenzying our politics, barbarizing our language and depriving us of the kind of artistic greatness that isn’t available on Twitter feeds.”

2. “Feverish Liaisons”

“She argues that it may in fact be a sign of health to enter into a relationship that is turbulent, demanding or unorthodox. She praises long-distance relationships, arduous relationships, relationships with men who are elusive, relationships the therapeutic culture adamantly opposes. She asks, ‘Could it be that the choice of a challenging love object signals strength and resourcefulness rather than insecurity and psychological damage, as we so often hear?'”

3. “Centre Court Without Rain? What’s Next, Clay?”

“There are those who feel that the roof robs Wimbledon of its ineffable spirit, the spirit that believes in triumphing over adversity and making do with unfortunate turns of events.”

4. “Ripped. (Or Torn Up?)”

“Federer is elegant and fluid and cerebral, so that his best tennis looks effortless even when he is making shots that ought to be physically impossible. Nadal is muscled-up and explosive and relentless, so that his best tennis looks not like a gift from heaven but instead like the product of ferocious will.”

5. “In Missouri, a Fight Over a Highway Adoption”

“Ms. Keene said members of the group, who sometimes wear swastikas, wanted to do community service.”

6. “Twitter on the Barricades: Six Lessons Learned”

“Political revolutions are often closely linked to communication tools.”

7. “Get a Life, Holden Caulfield”

“Teachers say young readers just don’t like Holden as much as they used to. What once seemed like courageous truth-telling now strikes many of them as ‘weird,’ ‘whiny’ and ‘immature.'”

8. “Action!”

“She still makes relationship movies, but the relationships evolve both through the chatter at which women are supposed to excel and the contact of bodies, often male, sometimes female, running, surfing, parachuting, living and dying out in the world.”

9. “Everyone a Winner? The Lost Art of Conceding Defeat”

“At the upper reaches of society, we litigate ever more readily and accept misfortune with ever less stoicism. Being fired from a job becomes the beginning of a negotiation, while a routine school suspension instantly goes to appeal. In part, this is probably the inevitable reckoning for a culture that gives trophies to every Little Leaguer because, as the saying goes, we’re all winners. Shouldering defeat is, after all, a skill that has to be learned early, like speaking Mandarin or sleeping through the night.”

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