Pessimism of the Intellect, Optimism of the Will… or something like that

The fantasy that cultural and political engagement is a gift bestowed upon the poor by often white and rich benefactors is characteristic of the all-consuming culture of gentrification, and the prevalent ideology of supply-side economics.

The Case for Writers to Play Video Games

Many people seem happy to think of writing as something that, if simply practiced enough, can be perfected — or even worse, they think of writing as a job. But here’s one piece of advice I haven’t come across in my perusal of readily available resources: play video games.

Snaps of America

The whiskey we drank, the sunflower seeds we ate and spat, the places we slept: all make it into the digital backlog forming behind us, a froth of pixels left in our wake.

Review of Review Reviews

On the Internet, I’ve noticed, people waste each others’ time all the time. It’s like some kind of weird favor that we do for one another the way that dogs every now and then will behave in a way that, if we were to anthropomorphize their behavior, might sound metaphorically like they were wasting each other’s time.

Watch The Thrones

Lord of the Rings allows me to escape my limited perspective for another world; A Song of Ice and Fire forces me to be acutely aware of that limited perspective, and to evaluate it in relation to the world around me.

Never Argue with Stupid People

Mark Twain, from the grave, on discretion.

My Grandfather’s Photographs

Given my privileged access to the life and art of the esteemed jurist, and my general lack of important things to do, I took it upon myself to make a study of his photography.

California Hunger Strikers and the Malnourished American Conscience

To achieve a life behind bars that resembles one worth living, hunger strikers are risking death.

The Banality of Biopics

Hannah Arendt is a film that focuses almost exclusively on the subject of thinking, or rather on the subject of thinking while smoking cigarettes.

When Panic Takes Over

Unlike those classic tales written to interrupt moral panic, writing from the panicked perspective is a terrible narrative strategy. It isolates the reader or viewer from the characters and doesn’t allow for emotional engagement with the story.