Ideas That Matter

Our resident philosopher presents a valuable and provocative A-to-Z -- from Absolutism to Zeitgeist -- of the concepts that will shape our century.

April 19: "What you see first, after the starting gun's crack, is a column of bobbing runners, thousands of them, surging downhill..."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…