Boris Johnson is the current highest profile exponent of this art. The UK’s new prime minister has evoked a “can do spirit” to defeat “the doubters, the doomsters, the gloomsters”, whom he believes threaten Brexit

Three cheers for positive thinking! The evidence suggests instilling what the psychologists call “positive affect” has a variety of knock-on benefits.(...)

José Salas Subirat: “Translating is the most attentive way of reading.”

Although both James Joyce and his editor Sylvia Beach included Spain from the first moment in their international promotion strategy for Ulysses, and (...)

US president Donald Trump:  the US midtterm elections take place on Tuesday, November 6th. Photograph: Doug Mills/The New York Times

During the long and increasingly grim political summer of 2016, amidst the first presidential campaign for which I was back in the US after eight year(...)

The Folio Society edition of The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, illustrated by Anna and Elena Balbusso

As hundreds of thousands of women gathered in Washington to protest the inauguration of President Donald Trump, the novelist Margaret Atwood began get(...)

Bob Dylan performing in 1993: he “widened the scope of poetry more successfully than many of the Beat poets”. Photograph: EPA

I’m listening to Billy Joe Shaver And I’m reading James Joyce Some people they tell me I got the blood of the land in my voice For those still wond(...)

The media gathered beneath the US flag at a Hillary Clinton event in New York on election night. Photograph: Elsa/Getty Images

It’s over and nobody really won because the United States has lost so much dignity, honour, respect and hope – qualities that matter more than wealth.(...)

Republican US presidential candidate Donald Trump jeers the media in front a crowd of supporters in July  in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Photograph:  John Moore/Getty Images

Richard Ford My old mentor and friend Shelby Foote used to say that a person couldn’t understand the US without understanding the American civil wa(...)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu talks during his Likud party meeting at the Knesset in Jerusalem on May 23rd, 2016. Photograph: AFP/Getty

‘Please don’t write about Ya’ir Golan!’ a friend begged me. “Anything a leftist like you writes will only harm him.” So I abstained for some weeks. Bu(...)