Interviewing people is hard. It’s not easy to talk to someone to try and understand who they are and what they’re about. In journalism, you’re trying to get interviewees to say interesting things too—things that hold up on the page, sound good to the reader, that get the subject to provide a kind of forensic self-examination. The result is that the best interviews are elevated to an art form. But interviewing is also a skill […]
Marchese: When I was first putting together my questions for you, I realized that a lot of them had to do with things like how we can help kids with the ambient stress of parents’ worrying about the pandemic or politics. But maybe it’s wrong for me to assume that a successful children’s-book author has unique ideas about kids’ emotions. So let me ask you: Do you think you have special insights about kids? Willems: […]
A review of Zeke Emanuel’s new book comparing health systems across the world has as good a description of the American maze as I’ve seen. Britain is so lucky to have the NHS; I find it literally impossible to explain to people here how the system doesn’t have to be this way. By contrast, the US health care system—if one can call it that—excludes more people, provides thinner coverage, and is far less affordable. It […]
Jiayang Fan’s story about her mother’s ALS, covid, and Chinese propaganda was very affecting. Somehow she found herself in the middle of this whirlwind that illustrated—graphically, confrontingly—two huge global stories: the coronavirus pandemic and Chinese politics. But I was utterly riveted by her interview on the Longform podcast, which seemed to add a whole set of extra layers.
Britain’s left is riddled with anti-trans views in a way that continues to disappoint me. This interview with Judith Butler in the New Statesman is a great example of that, and of how to think about representation and poisonous discourse. We see a journalist trying to prod a certain kind of answer out of a thinker, and the thinker responding by rejecting the premises of questioning in an artful and coherent way. I confess to […]
For nearly as long as there has been newspapers and magazines, there have been people who use publications to launder their own reputations or advance their own agendas. Press barons were a real thing before fake news, and media ownership is still a great way for the powerful to access even more power. PR folks, meanwhile, take great pains to try and place op-eds by, or positive stories about, their clients in the pages of […]
“Sicha has managed to widen the scope of Style without making it the junk drawer of the Times. Style is a place where experiments can be run and boundaries pushed. This is likely possible because Style is still seen as a less fraught area of the newsroom than, say, the Politics desk (not to mention Op-ed).”—How Choire Sicha Is Steering Style in a Crisis, Jessica Wakeman, Study Hall
I harbor a mild but ongoing fascination with the wild, out of the way places that British people have decided they should inhabit; the far-flung islands, the unnavigable boggy moors, the places where there’s one house every few miles and people choose lonely, hard existence for whatever reason. St Helena, Dartmoor, the Hebrides, Pitcairn and so on. Larissa MacFarquhar—one of the New Yorker writers I most enjoy—crystallizes what draws people to one of these places, […]
Is there a better writer out there than Carvell Wallace right now? I’m not sure. His essay on parenting his teenage kids through the pandemic and the protests absolutely hit me in the gut. For the fourth (and final) issue of Anxy, I managed to convince him to go and interview Terry Crews. He turned around something great for us. One day I’m hoping I’ll get to work with him again.