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Posts by: Padma Viswanathan

Typing Fast and Sitting Still

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Blogging and stillness seem to be contradictory activities: I, along with many others, think of blogging as the relentless and hasty documentation of modern life on the go, news-in-brief for busybusy people. And yet what bloggers are often attempting is to draw careful attention to the overlooked and underseen, to stop us in our tracks and make us wonder at what we might otherwise miss.

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Reading Lists on Serious Topics From the Back Pages of the Newspaper

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Our view of the world is so often sculpted by front page and home page, so here is a look at some long-ongoing crises of self-determination that only occasionally surface in the news:

First, Nigeria and Big Oil. I’m not condoning militarism, terrorism, or sabotage, and neither are most Nigerian nationals, even though there’s a lot of oil on that slippery slope to human rights violations.

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John Keats, Sleep

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John Keats’s tribute to sleep—called, fittingly, “To Sleep”—equates it, winsomely, with death. The poem is an invocation of that state which can be elusive, particularly to those with overactive or anxious minds, or small kids, or, in my case, both. It begins:

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