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October 27, 2013 | By Tom Standage
Today it's easy to assume that social media platforms are a recent development, a phenomenon unique to the Internet age. But the exchange of media along social networks of friends and acquaintances is in fact much older than Facebook, Twitter or MySpace. Consider the situation in the late Roman republic, in the 1st century BC. At the time there were no printing presses and no paper. Instead, information circulated among the intermarried families of the Roman elite through the exchange of papyrus rolls.
October 9, 2013 | By David Colker and Steven Zeitchik
Film critic Stanley Kauffmann, who in the 20th century helped define movie reviews as an intellectual form, died of pneumonia Wednesday at St. Luke's Hospital in New York. He was 97. His death was announced by the New Republic, the politics and culture magazine that published his criticism for more than five decades. Although Kauffmann's commentary tended toward the intellectual and often went against the grain - finding fault in heralded movies such as "The Godfather," "Pulp Fiction" and "Full Metal Jacket" - he championed the rise of serious cinema in the late 1950s and 1960s.
August 19, 2013 | By Hector Tobar
The writer Albert Murray, a maverick intellectual who challenged widespread assumptions about U.S. and African American culture, has died in New York City at age 97. Murray, a novelist as well as essayist and literary and music critic, wrote more than a dozen books, beginning in 1970s with the seminal “The Omni-Americans: Black Experience and American Culture,” which posed a searing critique of both black separatism and white establishment ideas...
August 10, 2013 | By Irene Lechowitzky
If dogs could talk, they'd sing the praises of Ocean Beach, a laid-back San Diego neighborhood. Here, canines have top-dog status - they even have their own beach. There's much for humans to like as well in what's known as the People's Republic of Ocean Beach. O.B. retains its '60s vibe; it's funky, not plastic, and hippies still roam the streets. Newport Avenue, its main drag, is chockfull of dive bars, head shops and surf shops. Savor the mellow side of life during the day: Stroll on the pier or hop on a bike and ride along the beach.
July 23, 2013 | By Susan Denley
Kate Middleton famously wore a blue Issa London wrap dress to announce her engagement to Prince William. That was in 2010. Fast-forward and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, and her prince just took home a brand-new baby boy, destined, mostly likely, to rule Britain one day. And Issa is prepared to invade the U.S. (and other parts of the world) thanks to a capsule collection with Banana Republic that is destined to hit select stores and online retail on Aug. 8. The collection includes nearly 40 pieces of women's apparel and accessories inspired by Banana Republic's safari roots and exotic travel, combined wih Issa's figure-flattering, modern silhouettes.
July 10, 2013 | By Susan Denley
Luxury fashion designer L'Wren Scott is teaming with Banana Republic on a holiday clothing collection, the retailer announced Wednesday. Scott -- a.k.a. Mick Jagger's girlfriend -- is known for sophisticated, high-end design, and, although she collaborated on a makeup collection with Lancome a couple of years ago, this is the first time she's joined forces with a mass market fashion retailer. The collection, due out Dec. 5, is to include more than 50 pieces of apparel and accessories, including sequined dresses, jeweled cardigans, tailored jeans and pencil skirts.
May 15, 2013 | By Richard Fausset
MEXICO CITY -- He's got to be wishing that  his daughter had just ordered takeout and gone home. The head of Mexico's consumer protection agency, Humberto Benitez Treviño, was fired Wednesday by President Enrique Peña Nieto, nearly three weeks after Benitez's daughter sparked a restaurant scandal that made her Internet infamous and sparked a national conversation about the petulance and lingering sense of entitlement of the Mexican ruling...
March 25, 2013 | By Robyn Dixon
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- The African Union on Monday suspended the Central African Republic and imposed sanctions after rebels ousted President Francois Bozize. South African President Jacob Zuma condemned the rebels as “bandits.” Zuma confirmed that at least 13 South African soldiers died in a nine-hour battle after they were attacked by some 2,000 rebels, and an additional 27 South Africans were wounded. One South African soldier is missing. "It is a sad moment for our country,” Zuma said, as controversy raged over the government's failure to pull out its forces.
March 24, 2013 | By Robyn Dixon
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa - Rebels in the Central African Republic ousted President Francois Bozize on Sunday, forcing him to flee as they stormed the capital, seized the presidential palace and took control. Bozize left the capital early Sunday, AP reported, citing an advisor to the president. He went to neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo, according to news agency reports. The rebels entered the capital overnight, with heavy fighting reported around the presidential palace.
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