Adolph Menzel -The Iron Rolling Mill

Life in the Iron Mills as Fiction of the “Close-Outsider Witness”

Rebecca Harding Davis had no firsthand experience of iron mills. Neither does her nameless narrator.
Toni Morrison

Toni Morrison’s Operatic Life

Toni Morrison was renowned for the musicality of her prose, so writing lyrics for classical music wasn't a huge stretch.
Taylor Swift at the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards

The Linguistic Evolution of Taylor Swift

If Taylor Swift shifts her accent in her transition from country to pop, does she lose the personal authenticity important to country music?
The cover of Exodus by Leon Uris

How Americans Were Taught to Understand Israel

Leon Uris's bestselling book Exodus portrayed the founding of the state of Israel in terms many Americans could relate to.

Resistance through Silence in Camus’s The Plague

"On this earth there are pestilences and there are victims, and it’s up to us, so far as possible, not to join forces with the pestilences."
An illustration of four people standing and wearing masks

Choosing Love over Eugenics

Some writers see contagion as a metaphor for community—proof that we exist within an interdependent network and not as autonomous disconnected islands.

How to Meme What You Say

The linguistic theories behind what we're trying to say when we adapt and share internet memes.
Illustration: An illustration from The Experiences of Loveday Brooke, Lady Detective

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/britishlibrary/11305222256

Meet Loveday Brooke, Lady Detective

Fictional detectives usually reflect conservative values. But the first "lady detective" story written by a woman broke boundaries.
George Floyd's image is projected on the Robert E. Lee Monument as people gather around on June 18, 2020 in Richmond, Virginia.

The Sorry State of Apologies

"Sorry" can be more than a mere word when it has real-world consequences.
Julie Enszer and the cover of issue 55 of Sinister Wisdom

Julie Enszer: “We Couldn’t Get Them Printed,” So We Learned to Print Them Ourselves

The editor of the lesbian feminist magazine Sinister Wisdom talked to us about lesbian print culture, feminist collectives, and revolution.