In this issue: COMMENT "Vive la France", by Adam Gopnik: The real lesson of Europe. THE TALK OF THE TOWN "Picks", by Reeves Wiedeman: Mel Kiper, Jr. takes in the N. F. L. draft. ANNALS OF TECHNOLOGY "Machine Politics", by David Kushner: The start of the Sony hacker wars. THE SPORTING SCENE "A Ring of One’s Own", by Ariel Levy: A teen-age Olympic boxing hopeful. BOOKS "Invitation to a Beheading", by James Wood: Hilary Mantel’s Tudor novels. THE CURRENT CINEMA "Going the Distance", by David Denby: Reviews of The Five-Year Engagement and The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.