How Long Is the Shadow of Jim Crow?

WHEN HE WAS in ninth grade, Adolph Reed Jr. stole a bag of chips from a corner store in New Orleans. This was in late 1959 or early 1960 (he doesn’t quite recall), and Reed, like many teenage boys, was in a rebellious phase that involved shoplifting. His flirtation with petty larceny was short-lived — … Read more

A Conversation with Tim Kasher

ON CURSIVE’S 2003 groundbreaking album, The Ugly Organ, a twentysomething Tim Kasher called out the contrived and formulaic songwriting dominating the music scene. In “Art Is Hard,” he mocked bands who sacrificed creativity for profit, who “[k]eep churning out those hits / till it’s all the same old shit.” Looking back, one might say that … Read more

The Story of a Dead Soldier Told by His Sister”

The following review was written before the recent Russian invasion of Ukraine. ¤ OLESYA KHROMEYCHUK’S NEW BOOK, A Loss: The Story of a Dead Soldier Told by His Sister, is about her own brother, who died in 2017 fighting for Ukraine against Russian-backed forces. Though the book achieves Khromeychuk’s goal — to humanize the war … Read more

On Ally Wilkes’s “All the White Spaces”

ALLY WILKES’S ANTARCTICA circa 1920 is a panoply of polar terrors. The sirenic “call of the South” portends nightmarish killer whales with grinding teeth; frigid “Hell” and fiery shipwreck; an aurora australis that crackles and encroaches, lassoing men and dragging them to snowy deaths; a putrefying body slowly sawed apart, the stuff of Service’s “Blasphemous … Read more

Pretending the Unhoused Away

IN THE 1920s, Herbert Croly wrote of the sense of malleability that prevailed across Southern California, a place “in which almost any kind of house is practical and almost any kind of plant will grow.” A brief walk through Los Angeles’s Silver Lake neighborhood confirms this impression, showing off midcentury modern mansions poured from concrete, … Read more

The Paris Review – Re-Covered: I Leap Over the Wall by Monica Baldwin

In Re-Covered, Lucy Scholes exhumes the out-of-print and forgotten books that shouldn’t be. Photograph by Lucy Scholes. Ten years after Monica Baldwin voluntarily entered an enclosed religious order of Augustinian nuns, she began to think she might have made a mistake. She had entered the order on October 26, 1914, shortly after the outbreak of … Read more