The first article in this issue disputes the validity of the responsibility principle, which states that people cannot be blamed for failing to act in ways they are incapable of doing, as would be the case if a son were blamed for the fact that a parent is a drunk. It is part of a program to reduce philosophical issues to sociological ones. The second article in this issue suggests that Shakespeare's great tragedies are fruifully looked at as melodramas.
The purpose of this e-journal is to use in tandem the techniques of literary criticism and social structural analysis to illuminate American politics and the various institutions in American society and sometimes matters more global, like religion or war, by turning an eye on the events and objects and performances that are considered art and entertainment, those defined broadly enough to include whatever is covered in newspapers and other media. Another concern is to pick up the texture of social life, both in the United States and in general, through the analysis of those events, objects and performances that are to be found in everyday life.