My fellow Americans

Keep your eye on those Cubists

When Picasso wrote the essay “Why I Became A Communist”, he attracted the attention of the sweatily paranoid J. Edgar Hoover — who subsequently ordered his spooks to amass as much intel as they could on the artist. These days, the FBI has unsealed all these files and — rather amazingly — put them online. Click here to see all 188 pages of the Picasso files. While you’re at it, check out the many other luminaries that the FBI kept its eye on, including Albert Einstein, Louis Armstrong, and Desi Arnez.

(Thanks to the J-Walk blog for this one!)

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I'm Clive Thompson, the author of Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better (Penguin Press). You can order the book now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powells, Indiebound, or through your local bookstore! I'm also a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine and a columnist for Wired magazine. Email is here or ping me via the antiquated form of AOL IM (pomeranian99).

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