"Description of a village lottery. The entire town of about 300 people assembles in the village square where the time-honored ritual is observed. First all the heads of families draw slips of paper out of a box. Bill Hutchinson gets a certain slip after which his entire family draws slips. His wife, Tessie gets one with a black mark on it. The villagers surround her and start throwing stones at her, while she screams, 'It isn't fair.'" —Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery" was published in the New Yorker on this day in 1948. Jackson biographer Ruth Franklin goes over some of the responses.
Where do you go if you want the traffics and the attention? Straight into the bosom of Jesus! The New Yorker today publishes (subscription-only!) a profile of Lynn Vincent, the best-selling bookwriter that you don't know. She wrote Heaven is Real (oh actually called HEAVEN IS FOR REAL), which has sold more than seven million copies. (And also Sarah Palin's book!) That is eerie, because the cover of Newsweek this week is also headlined "Heaven Is Real." That is some world-class SEO trolling, Tina Brown's Newsweek. But the problem is, the story told in Newsweek by a doctor about going to heaven and coming back does not match up [...]
"The new majority opinion transformed Citizens United into a vehicle for rewriting decades of constitutional law in a case where the lawyer had not even raised those issues." —Take your time with the Jeffrey Toobin history of Citizens United. Save it for a rainy day! Oh look it's about to rain.
Assigned to profile Graham Greene, Penelope Gilliatt, briefly full-time since Pauline Kael left for an ill-fated stint as a Hollywood producer, turned in a draft that a young fact-checker named Peter Canby flagged for lifting material from previously published work. (Canby now oversees the storied fact-checking department.) Brushing the warnings aside, William Shawn published Gilliatt's piece, which is when Michael Mewshaw realized she'd pilfered more than 800 words of his own Greene profile from The Nation. As he recounted in his 2003 memoir Do I Owe You Something? Mewshaw complained to Shawn, who blamed the plagiarism on Gilliatt's alcohol problem and said public excoriation would drive her to [...]
The data we're allowed to have from places like Conde Nast makes it a little difficult to parse, but this helps: "between its eight magazines with tablet editions, the company has 242,000 digital customers." Good night, nurse! Your revolution is… maybe next year? (That being said, I'd love to see income numbers from that. It's gotta be somewhere from $1.2 million to $2.6 million, I figure? The problem is counting people who get iPad access "bundled" with magazine subscriptions; where people get counted is important!) And language is tricky!
But here's what we can figure out. The New Yorker "served" 89,684 iPad copies for an issue in [...]
“Killing them all is the answer?”
“They’re terrorists!” Andrea says.
“They didn’t start out as terrorists!”
“They invented suicide bombing!”
—How the New Yorker destroys lives.