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CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS ISSUE
is a science writer is a freelance journalist
JEREMY CLARKE MARK COUSINS
is the author of The Story of Film (Pavilion Books)
Issue one hundred and ﬁfteen October 2005
column “Public Domain” appears in the Guardian
RICHARD DAWKINS was voted Britain’s top public intellectual last year
is director of the Royal African Society
book Blue Electric Blonde will be published in the spring
is a senior researcher at Demos
CATHERINE FIESCHI DAVID HERMAN
is a television producer
is the author of The Short Life and Long Times of Mrs Beeton is professor of the classical tradition at Oxford University
Prospect and Foreign Policy’s list of the world’s top public intellectuals shows that we have moved away from the concerns of the last century.
The top 100 list
Here is Prospect’s selection and criteria for inclusion. Now vote for your top ﬁve.
is vice-chancellor of the University of Buckingham is a writer living in France presents BBC4’s Art Safari
is the author of What Lincoln Believed (Doubleday)
JOHN LLOYD is former editor of the FT magazine KENAN MALIK
21 Left out
is the author of Man, Beast and Zombie (Phoenix)
12 Stormy waters
CAROL M SWAIN
is coeditor of Psychiatric Genetics and Genomics (OUP)
Black Americans are doing better than New Orleans suggests—for now.
The centre-left is in retreat across most of Europe. DEBATE
book Black Swan Green is forthcoming from Sceptre is a professor of politics at Princeton University is a freelance writer
13 System failure
28 Will science explain mental illness?
It wasn’t just Bush’s failure. American democracy is myopic. OPINIONS
ALASDAIR ROBERTS’s book, Blacked Out: Government Secrecy in the Information Age, will be published in January STEVEN ROSE
16 Opiate of the masses
Will the sciences of genetics and psychopharmacology lead to greater understanding of mental illness? Or do we need a broader approach? ESSAYS
is the author of The 21st Century Brain (Jonathan Cape)
The highly addictive drug Gerin oil.
34 In defence of mandarins 17 Emotional confusion
CATHERINE FIESCHI MICHAEL LIND
IAN STEWART’s book The Mayor of Uglyville’s Dilemma is forthcoming CAROL M SWAIN is author of The New White Nationalism in America (CUP) ERIK TARLOFF
What is the role of emotion in politics?
18 Biography and sexism
The meritocratic mandarinate shielded democracy from the excesses feared by 19th-century liberals. But the nightmare of mobocracy may yet come true.
is a novelist and writer
next book A Royal Affair will be published in March 2006
Why do women biographers get confused with their subjects? Men don’t.
38 Cherchez l’enfant
PETER WATSON is author of Ideas: A History from Fire to Freud (Weidenfeld) DAVID WILLETTS
20 Academic press
is shadow secretary of state for trade and industry
University presses are an unsung corner of intellectual life.
The tradition of children’s writing has been revived by two good—though overrated—authors. JK Rowling and Philip Pullman, with their silly metaphysics, reﬂect our times.
4 PROSPECT October 2005
44 Bacon’s shadow
Francis Bacon claimed that technology grew out of science, and that science should be state-funded. Wrong twice. SPECIAL REPORT
74 Seeking Shakespeare
48 Public sector IT failures
Despite Britain’s poor record with big public sector IT schemes, much of Labour’s programme depends on them. Have we learnt from the past? JOURNAL
Lack of facts about Shakespeare seems to encourage biographers. Peter Ackroyd is the latest.
76 Rushdie the warrior-poet
54 Born in Bradford
Salman Rushdie’s disdain for closed cultures extends far beyond Islam. COLUMNS
I witnessed the moment the British left gave up on secular universalism. COLUMNS
Charting cinema’s changes since 1995.
10 These islands
68 Private view
Succour for Michael Buerk.
Aaaaaargh! It’s video art.
15 Washington watch
78 Cultural tourist
Zadie and the return of beauty. Plus “Under the radar”
Katrina changed everything—or did it?
53 Out of Africa
I, Clive Pike, shall now inform my followers of the people who helped me bring forth the Book. REVIEWS
China brings geopolitics back to Africa.
Ten years of Prospect, ten years of telly. FORTHCOMING Result of the Prospect/Foreign Policy global intellectuals poll Fiction by Gautam Malkani Robert Jackson on the EU budget battle Michael Coveney considers the state of theatre criticism
THE NEXT ISSUE OF PROSPECT IS PUBLISHED ON 20TH OCTOBER
57 Lab report
70 The horrors of Houellebecq
Clint’s dead, but his genome lives on.
58 Brussels diary
Michel Houellebecq’s new novel is a further dig at literature, aspiration and himself. And a biography of the writer tries to explain his self-hatred.
Brussels is best when it is boring.
72 Vidal at 80 88 Modern manners
JEREMY CLARKE DUNCAN FALLOWELL
My daffodil-staring odyssey. REGULARS
Once the most stylish bitch in the US, Gore Vidal approaches his 80th birthday with his reputation in decline.
6 Letters 8 News & Curiosities plus Enigmas & puzzles IAN STEWART 17 Numbers game THE CRUNCHER 86 The generalist DIDYMUS 87 The list
73 A Tory community
The Conservatives have traditionally combined two principles—personal freedom and public service. It now needs a new idea of community.
POLITICAL PUBLICATION OF THE YEAR
Political Studies Association
PROSPECT October 2005 5