compliments

The Uncertain Art of the American Compliment

The way Americans compliment is maximalist and enthusiastic, but it may not always be sincere. Our resident linguist unpacks the language of politeness.
Lew Welch

The Poet Who Wanted to Be Eaten by Vultures

One day in 1971, the hard-drinking Beat poet Lew Welch walked into the woods of Nevada County and disappeared, possibly angling to be eaten by vultures.
Jessie Chaffee Florence in Ecstasy

Expecting the Unexpected: Researching Florence in Ecstasy

Debut novelist Jessie Chaffee on how she researched her critically-acclaimed new novel Florence in Ecstasy, with a little help from JSTOR.
Jordy Rosenberg

Queering Jack Sheppard

An interview with author Jordy Rosenberg about his new novel, Confessions of the Fox.
Maxim Gorky

Revolutionary Writer Maxim Gorky’s NYC Sex Scandal

In 1906, Russian Bolshevik writer Maxim Gorky was given a warm welcome in the United States. Then the American media manufactured a scandal about his girlfriend.
Hammock reader summer

Summer Reading in JSTOR

Stories by Meg Wolitzer, David Sedaris, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, E. Annie Proulx, Amy Tan, Donna Tartt, Lydia Millet, Lauren Groff, and more.
WB Yeats

W.B. Yeats Loved Tarot Cards

The august Irish poet was once a member of a secret occult order called The Hermetic Society of the Golden Dawn. He was also an avid student of the Tarot.
Florida car

Wild and Finally Free in Lauren Groff’s Florida

Lauren Groff’s latest story collection explores the literary archetype of the Orphan.
Elizabeth Bennett

How Lizzie Bennet Got Her Books

In Regency England, a novel cost about $100. Subscription-based circulating libraries became a way for women of modest means to gain knowledge.
drag queen

The Unspeakable Linguistics of Camp

When gay and lesbian people had to invent their own languages with which to talk with each other, camp led the way.