The Editors' Longreads Picks
- An excellent essay on poverty and writing by Starr Davis. Updated May 31, 2022 ago
- Novelist Héctor Tobar tries to understand the 1992 Los Angeles riots through the experiences of a single high school.
- Steven Johnson with a long assessment of the current state of A.I. and language. (The illusion has gotten very good.)
Apr 18, 2022
‘Give me a list of all the ingredients in Bolognese sauce,’’ ‘‘Write a poem about a French coastal village in the style of John Ashbery,’’ ‘‘Explain the Big Bang in language that an 8-year-old will understand.’’ The first few times I fed GPT-3 prompts of this ilk, I felt a genuine shiver run down my spine.↩︎ The New York Times Magazine
Feb 23, 2021
I love these birds for their beauty, the way birders love actual birds, for the exalted brushstrokes of their wingspans that lift us from the drudge of survival. Some birds are reclusive. For example, the Florida scrub jay and Mexican jay have long been trapped behind a hunter green construction fence.↩︎ Orion Magazine
Nov 25, 2020
Actionable threats against him and his family began to be reported. The Michigan State Police worked with local law enforcement to arrange a security detail. All for doing his job. All for upholding the rule of law. All for following his conscience and defying the wishes of Donald Trump.↩︎ POLITICO
Sep 25, 2020
Ruth really did love being "the notorious RBG." At the opera, when her tiny figure, wrapped in a coat and babushka, would enter the Kennedy Center opera house from a side entrance, I don't know how, but people would see her, and the roar would begin, soon followed by a standing ovation, and loud cheering.↩︎ NPR
Aug 27, 2020
This is the world I imagine when I picture what I want for my children—a world where social consequences are weighted along with criminal consequences, where incapacitation is not conflated with torture, and murder and rape are taken so seriously that we do all we can to prevent either from happening in the first place.↩︎ Vanity Fair
Apr 3, 2020
Formerly fringe ideas on the left like universal basic income or universal health care are now household terms, online misinformation and disinformation are no longer abstract concepts but constant presences in our group chats, and malicious ideologies like ecofascism are taking root.↩︎ BuzzFeed News
Mar 12, 2020
The real choice we face is not whether to eat meat or how many children to have, but how to make profound and rapid structural changes, without which no personal choices will matter. As one climate scientist recently put it to me: "Fuck hope." She is pregnant with her second child.↩︎ The London Review of Books
Jun 26, 2019
Ryan Vallee wasn’t one of the popular kids at Belmont High. But he had two advantages his victims did not. He was a boy, and therefore not as vulnerable to slut-shaming. And he understood how to harness technology to seem powerful, controlling and terrifying [to] victims for years with only a smartphone and a computer.↩︎ WIRED
May 10, 2019
Honeybee is one of a growing number of companies that are developing standardized lunar rovers. Small countries with no national space agency, as well as private entities, could soon have their own robotic resource hunters roving around the moon, with little honeycomb emblems on their sides.↩︎ The New Yorker
Mar 15, 2019
Hader said, “The Russian writers were fascinated by people who kept moving toward being unhappy, despite their intentions. And I do feel like there’s a huge balance thing going on in the universe. My happiness level has gone up, ‘Barry’ is a giant success, and I finally get to direct. But I get divorced.”↩︎ The New Yorker
- Our championship match is decided in the Tournament of Books, with news of a Rooster surprise debuting this summer. Updated Mar 31, 2017
- In Thursday's action, Reyhan Harmanci sets up a colossal final.
- The Zombie round opens with Buzzfeed's Isaac Fitzgerald reading The Nix and The Underground Railroad.
- "Will Putin expose the failings of American democracy or will he inadvertently expose the strength of American democracy?" Updated Mar 3, 2017
- Wilbur Ross just wanted to make some money in ethically gray areas (that should've prevented him from taking office).
- Jeff Sessions's spokeswoman can't help but continue to lie.
- Trump's assault on the environment begins with American headwaters. Updated Mar 1, 2017
- Don't just blame the oil companies for destroying the oceans—blame sushi restaurants.
- Nothing escapes the deepest trenches of the ocean floor. Not light, not nutrients, not pollutants.
- Crickets are your new favorite sustainable food source—but they may not have enough protein to feed us all. Updated Feb 28, 2017
- Attention, Earthlings: The fate of your planet hinges on the success of the Impossible Burger.
- Study finds that Subway's "chicken" meat is only half chicken.