Magazine August 27, 2012, Issue

A Vicious Narcissus

Gore Vidal in 1977 (AP)
On the career of Gore Vidal

The novelist and fantasist Gore Vidal, who died last month at 86, must ever occupy a special place in the hearts of National Review’s extended family. I hasten to add that by “special” I do not mean honored, cherished, or affectionate. On the contrary. The critical Vidal moment came in the summer of 1968. The place: Chicago. The festival: the Democratic National Convention. The weather: partly cloudy with a high chance of riots.

If you are reading this, you probably know the story. WFB and Gore Vidal had both been asked by ABC, at that time an important television network, to comment

Roger Kimball — Mr. Kimball is publisher of Encounter Books, and co-editor and publisher of The New Criterion.

In This Issue

Articles

Politics & Policy

Four Challenges

Whoever wins the presidential election will have political responsibility for an economy beset by four distinct problems. At the moment neither party has a compelling answer to them. The first challenge ...
Politics & Policy

Olympian Self-Seriousness

It’s that orotund opening theme song that drags you into watching the Olympics, that inescapable Cecil B. DeMille bombast suggesting Vulcan beating a kettle drum. Bum-bum-ba-BUM-BUM-bum-bum-ba-BUM-BUM. Battle stations! Ramming speed! ...
Politics & Policy

Like a Boss

What do women want? The conventional biological wisdom is that men select mates for fertility, while women select for status — thus the commonness of younger women’s pairing with well-established ...

Features

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

The Italian’s Job

‘I believe in American exceptionalism, just as I suspect that the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks believe in Greek exceptionalism.”  When President Obama spoke these words, on ...
Politics & Policy

Shoring Up Fragments

Conservatives have long understood the importance of fighting the cultural war against the Left simultaneously with the much more straightforward and easily delineated economic and political wars. In many ways, ...
Politics & Policy

Blistering B-Listers!

There are few Hollywood career transitions more fraught than the leap from “star in the making” to movie star outright. Consider Colin Farrell: The handsome, roguish Irishman worked his way ...
Politics & Policy

Making War

‘The size of the internal American market and its wealth of buying power and also raw materials . . . guarantee the American automobile industry internal sales figures that alone ...
Politics & Policy

Veep Chaos

The day after Democratic presidential candidate George McGovern won the Massachusetts primary in 1972, reporter Robert D. Novak called around for comments. One of his sources, a liberal senator, provided ...

Sections

Politics & Policy

Letters

Deep Hunger In “Quidditch, It’s Not” (July 30), Andrew Stuttaford has some positive things to say about the Hunger Games trilogy, but in the end he dismisses the series as basically ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ The Democrats are ramping up the invective. In just the first week of August, they called Romney a tax cheat, a murderer, and George W. Bush. ‐ In a victory ...
The Long View

TO: YUM! Brands

TO: YUM! Brands FROM: MarketGAY Public Relations IN RE: How to maximize YUM!’s position in the marketplace This is a short document to “set the table” for our deeper discussions in the following ...
Athwart

Creation Unscience

Perhaps you read my latest popular-science book, Colons: How the New Science of Punctuation Is Changing Our Book Titles. I intended it to change the conversation about how we have ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

CHRISTENING A melancholy soul is penning verses downstairs, between two pillars and a post, imposing limitations on himself with rhyme and beat, for lack of confidence. The box fan makes a loosely grumbling host. Mahogany and ...

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