The Age of Discovery created a boom in information-gathering, Internet-like in its speed, each new map a wishful startup out to change the world.
Ah, to be at the center of the world! How Gerard Mercator changed history by creating the first useful map. Michelle Legro of the ever-wonderful Lapham’s Quarterly writes.
I am always interested not in America by itself, but America as an idea and how that idea has changed over time, in the eyes of the rest of the world and in the eyes of Americans.
Sam Lipsyte on being an American writer in translation and the venerable tradition of masturbation in literature.