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The brief literary history of a cocktail: The Gin and Tonic

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Like the Mint Julep, the Gin and Tonic is of unusual provenance. Similarly born out of a unique historical conjuncture of East and West, the seemingly timeless combination of gin, lime, sugar, and tonic water came into being almost by pure chance, at the intersections of colonialism, modern medicine and, well, boredom. The now famous drink was invented by a group of British soldiers stationed in...

Punishing Wealth: The Great Gatsby’s Critics in 2013

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Why is the opulence of The Great Gatsby so controversial? Thanks to Baz Luhrmann’s production, the book has a new set of critics with a common refrain: Gatsby-esque affluence is bad news. “Did anyone actually read The Great Gatsby?” asks Zachary M. Seward in Quartz, citing the perennial popularity of Gatsby-themed parties before complaining that “so many people seem enchanted...