Essay Filter
  1. Popula

    Popula, part of the Civil network, is “a journalist-owned, journalist-run, ad-free publication with nobody to answer to, except you.” Browse their growing archives for fresh, timely writing and art.

    Art
  2. What Is the Most Nostalgic Song of All Time?

    “A simple question, posed at eight o’clock on a Saturday night. I got 5,000 comments back.” At the Village Voice, Mikel Jollett writes on music’s power to evoke memory and a sense of loss.

    Commentary
  3. The Country Where Fútbol Comes First

    If you love soccer, you probably enjoy a good underdog story. Here’s Uruguay’s: a small country with a rich World Cup legacy, which Candace Rose Rardon lovingly retells in her illustrated essay on Longreads.

    Culture
  4. Seven Centuries of Bstila

    Anny Gaul, a scholar of North African and Middle Eastern culinary traditions, takes us on a deep dive through the centuries-long history of Bstila (or Pastilla), one of Morocco’s signature dishes (bonus: recipe included).

    Cooking
  5. “Tony”: David Simon on Anthony Bourdain

    The creator of The Wire and Treme remembers his years of friendship and collaboration with the late Anthony Bourdain.

    Commentary
    Photo by Anna Hanks (CC BY 2.0)
  6. Michigan Quarterly Review

    Michigan Quarterly Review, the flagship literary journal of the University of Michigan, has been publishing fiction, essays, and poetry for over 50 years — and the entire archive is available online.

    Authors
  7. Forgetting the Madeleine

    At Longreads, Paris-based pastry chef Frances Leech reflects on taste, memory, and literature’s most famous confection: the humble madeleine, immortalized in Marcel Proust’s In Search of Lost Time.

    Cooking
  8. Rewriting the Story of the Starving Armenian

    Liana Aghajanian on the food traditions of Armenian-Americans: “Having lost property, cultural heritage, and identity in addition to the millions who were killed, food became the most transportable cultural marker that could be made tangible with the right ingredients, as Armenians were forced to migrate across the world.” 

    Cooking
  9. Longreads on Motherhood: A Reading List

    Dive into four personal essays on motherhood.

    Essay
  10. How Do We Write Now?

    Patricia Lockwood on writing in a time of distractions: “The feeling you get after hours of scrolling that all your thoughts have been replaced with cotton candy . . . as opposed to the feeling of being open to poetry, to being inside the poem, which is the feeling of being honey in the hive.”

    Essay
  11. The Role of Imagination in Creative Nonfiction

    Heather Thomson at Commonplace Book Blog explores fact, memory, and imagination in creative nonfiction: “But there is a middle ground, one which is perhaps the most difficult to do well, but the one I feel is most rewarding as a reader, and perhaps most faithful to how the mind works.”

    Books
  12. The Undiscovered Territory

    “Books and articles have been written about reverse culture shock. The identity crisis. . . . I find this state of consciousness intriguing rather than distressing. The thrill of disorientation and shattered perceptions. Besides, I never fit in to begin with.” J.D. Riso returns home after 19 years of a nomadic life.

    Essay
  13. “I’m more of a binge writer. I have to pull way back and let my creative pulse breathe. Then, at some point, I go in and I write and write and write…. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned to respect the cyclic nature of my creative life.”

    Essay
  14. On Fear

    Writer and political organizer Alex Press on fear: “It’s hard to imagine such a state of mind, writing from the present. Ours feels like a time of fear, defined by it much as I was then defined by its absence.”

    Abuse
  15. Essay: Sorrow for the Wings

    Writer Shawn McClure remembers baby chicks: “In the basement of his old farmhouse, my grandfather had a brooder. It looked like a multi-storied apartment building for chicks. They would crowd around the light bulb for heat, like yellow electrons darting around a red nucleus.”

    Animals