Cai Guo-Qiang
Drawing for Transient Rainbow
Gunpowder on two sheets of paper
(179 x 159.5 inches), 2003
The Museum of Modern Art, New York
Gift of Clarissa Alcock Bronfman
© Cai Guo-Qiang
Digital image © The Museum of Modern Art/
Licensed by Scala/Art Resource, New York
Reproduced with permission from Cai Studio, New York
Frontispiece Fall 2020

...I am your nurse. Soy su enfermera.
Are you short of breath? ¿
Tienes problemas para respirar?
Can you squeeze my hand? ¿Puede apretar mi mano?...
Fall 2020, page 37

Welcome to Raritan—a journal of wide-ranging inquiry. In the tradition of independent magazines from the Spectator to Partisan Review, Raritan offers writers and readers the opportunity for sustained reflection and aesthetic pleasure, uncluttered by academic jargon. Founded in 1981 by the distinguished literary critic Richard Poirier, and supported by Rutgers University, Raritan aims to reach the common reader in everyone and to provide a particular experience of reading, one that nurtures an engaged and questioning approach to cultural texts of all sorts: literary, artistic, political, historical, sociological, even scientific.

Our contributors include some of the most prominent thinkers of our time—David Bromwich, Adam Phillips, Jacqueline Rose, Pankaj Mishra—as well as talented younger writers whose voices we have just begun to hear—Corey Robin, Elizabeth Samet, Timothy Parrish, Kate Northrop, Jennifer Burns. In fiction, poetry, and translations as well as reflective essays, Raritan shows that probing inquiry is perfectly compatible with personal style, and that intellectual life, at its best, is a form of serious play. We invite you to explore Raritan and, if you like what you see, to subscribe to our magazine.

Jackson Lears
Editor in Chief

Jackson Lears: One Hundred Seconds
Editor's Note — Summer 2020
At what feels like an apocalyptic moment, the nation that has always claimed to play a uniquely redemptive role in world history has suddenly been recast in a different mold. In the richest country on earth, the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have turned out to be peculiarly catastrophic. Read more...

Jackson Lears: One Hundred Seconds
Editor's Note — Summer 2020

Current Exhibit: Six Moons

2020 02 exhibit

Selections from our Fall 2020 issue…

Field Notes from a Pandemic: Call of the Killdeer
Ben Miller

For more than two years, to perpetuate the writing life, I have worked as a support specialist--or secretary--in a small (one doctor, two nurse) twenty-four-hour telehealth ICU unit that ordinarily assists the ICU staff at thirty-four small hospitals spread across the Midwest.

Cats and the Existential Struggle of French Philosophy
Andy Martin
One day in the spring of 1961, Claude Lévi-Strauss and Roman Jakobson met in Paris to extinguish poetry.

Two Poems
Stephanie Burt

Someone will probably love you for who you are,
If not, you'll still find friends,
friends who, given time, or given warning,
will probably gather around you, hold your hands,
and wrap you in soft coats and blankets till the violence
inside your body ends.

Fall 2020

Summer 2020

Spring 2020

Winter 2020