Commentary Filter
  1. What it means to become British

    From Nadia El-Awady: “I come from a culture that tends to glorify non-elected, autocratic, all-powerful leaders. They have to. The consequences of not doing so are not pretty. So I’ve grown up with a disdain for the glorification of single human beings; even those that don’t have much power.”

    Commentary
  2. The Teen Idol Vanishes

    “Without 24/7 media, without the internet, a fiction like Dylan McKay could overtake a fact like Luke Perry.” 90210 star Luke Perry’s untimely death reminds us that Dylan McKay was one of the last icons of adolescence.

    Commentary
    Adam Scull / AP, Getty, Collage by Katie Kosma
  3. Reading in the Age of Constant Distraction

    “What I do when I look at Twitter is less akin to reading a book than to the encounter I have with a recipe’s instructions or the fine print of a receipt: I’m taking in information, not enlightenment.” Mairead Small Staid explores the work of Sven Birkerts and reading in our digital age.

    Books
    JOHAN GUDMUNDSEN-HOLMGREEN, LAESENDE LILLE PIGE, 1900
  4. “I struggle with thoughts about how I would live my life if I knew I had only days. We all ask ourselves that question at some point. But seriously, pause for a minute, move past the cliché of that question, and think about it.”

    Commentary
  5. Why I Can’t Write a Good Personal Essay

    At Tenure, She Wrote, a grad student explains her decision no longer to write narratives of inspiration and gumption: “A little smarts and hard work and luck can’t make my chronically ill body ‘productive.’”

    Academia
  6. Hakai Magazine

    Hakai Magazine explores our changing world through stories on oceans, coastlines, and marine life, written by today’s leading — and most engaging — scientists and environmentalists.

    Animals
  7. Three Stories to Read this LGBT History Month

    From The Golden Girls to 17th-century London, these stories explore the rich layers of queer history.

    Commentary
    Berlin's memorial to the first gay emancipation movement. Image by Alorin via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 4.0)
  8. The Adverts 250 Project

    Every day, The Adverts 250 Project highlights ads from Colonial America, shedding light on the era’s material culture and everyday life, and showing the pervasive presence of slavery in 18th-century advertising.

    Business
  9. Tim Harford: The Undercover Economist

    Economist and journalist Tim Harford blends insights on technology, business, and, economic history into accessible and engaging posts on a wide range of topics, from inequality to social media.

    Business
  10. “Politics isn’t the most important thing. A supreme court nomination isn’t the most important thing. The most important thing, when stories like this are in the news, is the victim, and how we treat them, how we speak about them.”

    Abuse
  11. Design Mom

    Designer, author, and AltSummit founder Gabrielle Blair created Design Mom in 2006; since then, she’s published thousands of posts on design and parenting, travel, food, and other topics (from the evergreen to the timely).

    Commentary
  12. The Problem with “Pretty Girls” and Princesses

    “Our world focuses on the looks of girls and the accomplishments of boys.” At OTV Magazine, Angela Noel reflects on the gendered compliments adults give children, and how they make it hard for girls to separate their self-worth from their appearance.

    Commentary
  13. Preemptive Love Blog

    Preemptive Love is a U.S. nonprofit that focuses on aid and peacemaking in Iraq and Syria. Their blog tells the stories of the people and communities on the frontline, working to rebuild after years of violent conflict.

    Commentary
  14. Plodding Through The Presidents

    American history buffs, this one’s for you: Howard Dorre, who’s reading (and blogging about) a biography of every U.S. president, has published numerous posts on arcane-yet-fascinating aspects of the presidency.

    Commentary
  15. You Don’t Have to Live in Public

    Austin Kleon on the need to gain a sense of ownership over our online lives: “Back [in 2013], the worst I felt social media did was waste your time. Now, the worst social media does is cripple democracy and ruin your soul.”

    Commentary