- From the Editors: Coal Comforts
It is a curious legacy of the historical importance of the coal industry in the UK that possessing a fireplace that looks like coal is still considered a status symbol, even though hardly anyone in the country can now make a living mining coal.
- On Network Culture: Kazys Varnelis in conversation with The Straddler
I worry that we have lost our ability to think historically about the present day. From the eighteenth century through the 1980s, we situated ouserves in the world using historical modes of explanation. But then something changed.
- A Moment among the Minskians by Dan Monaco
No one can know what will happen as the avenues to affluence and the economic expectations (be they grand or modest) that people have for their lives are more and more ostentatiously occluded for more and more members of the population.
- Culture in Economics and the Culture of Economics:
Economists essentially have a sophisticated lack of understanding of economics, especially macroeconomics. ... It's true that the average guy on the street doesn't understand economics, and it's also true that we don't understand economics. We just have a more sophisticated lack of understanding than the guy on the street.
in Conversation with Raquel Fernández
- Reporting from the State Department, Remembering
What people often forget when they watch reports from war-torn countries is that life goes on. I went to school, my mom made breakfast for me in the morning, we tried to have Sunday lunch. When there was no shelling, maybe I could cross the street and go play with my friends in the other building.
in Conversation with the BBC's Kim Ghattas
- Poetry by Christopher Mulrooney, Gerald Yelle, and Susan Marshall
- The Mail from Tunis, Probably:
My memo is a call for renewed depth perception, then, a quality increasingly lost in our flat screen world, where everything is at once intangible and near at hand. When things are seen from far away they are often flattened out, psychologically as well as visually.
A Hummingbird Fable of Proximity and Distance by Bonnie Costello
- Demonstrating Democracy by Elizabeth Murphy
Occupying a public space is a lot like casting a vote, except that in the case of occupation, the polls don't close, and the issues addressed are more diverse than those that appear on public ballots. Just by showing up, demonstrators pledge their support and hope that their efforts will be reflected in changes of opinion, and ultimately of policy.
- The Hungarian Fiction by Elizabeth Wray
They want to breed me like the mare, even after my first man gave me back.
- These Illegals: Immigrants as Criminals
Labor exploitation does not require hatred or racism, but it does thrive in their presence. What's more, ideologies of othering—particularly when codified as the law of the land—open up dimensions of exploitation that might previously have been unimagined—or unimaginable.
in the American Free Market by Dan Stageman
- The Straddler Review: The War on Contingency by William O'Hara
To forestall the untoward vicissitudes of Chance, commerce has begun to divest itself of the corporate models of yesteryear (e.g., research & development, marketing, product design, etc.) and now deploys its energies increasingly into categories of activity that fall broadly under the rubric of Data-Mining.