Essay Filter
  1. Each Breeze Began Life Somewhere As a Little Cough

    Poet Christoper Citro meditates on the omens — good and bad — that arrive on air: “I pierced the clear membrane and the coils expanded and the guest bed took its first deep breath. Each time a visiting friend or family member sleeps on it, it will take another.”

    Essay
  2. Taking a Trip Through Love Canal: The Residuum

    “That’s where we are at. As a society, our bodies and minds are in such a poor condition that we cannot touch our proverbial toes—we cannot control ourselves, yet we want to control something outside of ourselves.” Jack Caseros on environmental contamination, not climate change, as our most pressing environmental issue.

    Commentary
  3. The Complicated Past and Present of a California Utopia

    “And yet, like all utopian experiments, Esalen’s cracks widened as it grew in popularity and began to attract this wealthier set. Today’s guests hardly care about any sort of counterculture; they care, as Wolfe pointed out, about self-improvement.” Cody Delistraty spends a weekend at Big Sur’s Esalen Institute, once a bastion of hippie counterculture.

    Culture
  4. The Agony and Joy of the Great Scottish Outdoors

    Beautiful and unforgiving, Scotland’s countryside offers Alex Cochrane, a travel and history blogger, a chance to savor extreme emotions and masochistic bliss.

    Essay
  5. “To write feels like violence. All of us are mortal, but the text can survive long after its author: who are you, fleshy and contingent thing, who wants to live forever? To write is to stain clean paper, press sticks in smooth clay; in some sense always, to deform the world.”

    Essay
  6. Homeless daughters of a hybrid diaspora

    “Can you imagine being told from the moment you comprehend it that these four walls you call home, this shelter above your head, this comfort you look forward to each time you return from school or mosque, is not yours?” Zoya Kubra, currently based in Qatar, reflects on male privilege and gender inequality.

    Essay
  7. What we neglect when the children are young

    “But what nobody told me while my house was falling apart is that I would start to see clearly again, how this particular fog would lift.” At Motherwell, Lauren Apfel reflects on reclaiming her body — and her house — once on the other side of pre-schoolhood.

    Essay
  8. Oren’s, West 112th Street

    Musician Parker Ramsay ties together architecture, music performance, algebra, punctuation, and coming of age in a lovely personal essay inspired by his time playing the organ in English cathedrals.

    Architecture
  9. Atlas Minor

    The website of author James A. Reeves features thoughtful blog posts and longform essays on topics that range from philosophy and art to health and family.

    Authors
  10. Places Journal

    Places is a journal that publishes narrative journalism, essays, criticism, and photography on contemporary architecture, the landscape, and urbanism.

    Architecture
  11. Maybe You Are Actually Something Special

    Med student (soon-to-be-doctor) James Munro reflects on self-doubt, impostor syndrome, and discovering that sometimes, who you want to be is the person you already are.

    Education
  12. The Darkest Town in America

    “Hundreds of miles from anywhere else I’d ever been lies one of the darkest places in the country, tucked away from the bleeding glow of civilization.” A FiveThirtyEight writer visits Gerlach, Nevada, one of the few areas in the US mostly untouched from light pollution.

    Environment
  13. “So those who hold the privilege and control the decision-making process need to push until they’re bordering on discomfort, and then they will know they’re headed in the right direction.”

    Commentary
  14. Curating punk rock

    Can and should punk rock memorabilia be on display in museums — or does that defeat the purpose of punk’s ethos in the first place? Aging punk Matthew Barlow explores the question.

    Art
    Image by tigga666 (CC BY-SA 2.0)
  15. The Diversity Deal

    In the wake of the #MuslimBan Executive Order and the airport protests that followed it, London-based writer Ali Abbas calls on Muslim communities to forge stronger, more reciprocal ties with other marginalized groups.

    Commentary