Design for a House for a Cosmopolite, by Antoine-Laurent-Thomas Vaudoyer, 1783. © Private Collection / Archives Charmet / Bridgeman Images.


Volume X, Number 1 | winter 2017


Castles in Air

By Lewis H. Lapham

The American democracy and dream are the building of castles in air. Whither goeth the one so goeth the other, these days up in smoke and the spout.



Home Loans

A history of seven homes—now for rent on Airbnb.



Before Inuit tribes in southeastern Alaska would offer hospitality, anthropologist Franz Boas noted, a stranger would have to exchange blows to the head with a tribesman until one combatant was “vanquished.” In other areas, men would strip down and arm wrestle, sometimes to the death. The Inuit understanding: “The two men in meeting wish to know which of them is the better man.” 

For what do we live but to make sport for our neighbors and laugh at them in our turn?

- Jane Austen, 1813


U.S. secretary of agriculture Sonny Perdue meets with German minister of food and agriculture Christian Schmidt, 2017.


Equal Climates


U.S. Department of Agriculture bans words related to climate change.


Aristotle denies that the climate is changing.


LQ Podcast

#11 John Strausbaugh

Lewis H. Lapham talks with John Strausbaugh, author of City of Sedition: The History of New York City During the Civil War. More