The Top 5 Longreads of the Week

This week, we’re sharing stories from Bee Wilson, Seyward Darby, Wil S. Hylton, Greg Milner, and Annie Dillard.

FREDERIC J. BROWN / AFP / Getty Images

This week, we’re sharing stories from Bee Wilson, Seyward Darby, Wil S. Hylton, Greg Milner, and Annie Dillard.

Sign up to receive this list free every Friday in your inbox.

* * *

1. Why We Fell for Clean Eating

Bee Wilson | The Guardian | August 11, 2017 | 23 minutes (5,947 words)

On the rise of orthorexia — “an obsession with consuming only foods that are pure and perfect” — and the burgeoning industry that feeds it.

2. The Rise of the Valkyries

Seyward Darby | Harper’s Magazine | August 14, 2017 | 30 minutes (7,500 words)

Fifty-three percent of white women voted for Trump, Lara Lokteff reminds her audience. “And, I guess, to be really edgy, it was women that got Hitler elected.” Lokteff, the “queen bee” of the alt-right, is on a mission to remind these women that they are first and foremost, white. “When women get involved,” she declares, “a movement becomes a serious threat.”

3. Down the Breitbart Hole

Wil S. Hylton | New York Times Magazine | August 16, 2017 | 35 minutes (8,791 words)

Breitbart, a far-right media outlet, was once described by Steve Bannon as a “platform for the alt-right.” But its editor-in-chief says he is trying to turn the site into a legitimate news organization and has been called a traitor for acknowledging Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.

4. Nobody Knows What Lies Beneath New York City

Greg Milner | Bloomberg Businessweek | August 10, 2017 | 14 minutes (3,683 words)

Satellites can map the earth’s surface, but the world underneath cities is the last cartographic frontier. One team is mapping New York City’s subsurface infrastructure in 3-D to improve safety, streamline growth, and allow New York to lead the world to becoming a “smart city.”

5. Annie Dillard’s Classic Essay: ‘Total Eclipse’

Annie Dillard | The Atlantic | August 8, 2017 | 22 minutes (5,735 words)

Dillard’s 1982 personal essay — excerpted by The Atlantic from her new collection, The Abundance: Narrative Essays Old and New. She writes in exquisite detail about the haunting, surreal experience of witnessing the last solar eclipse, on February 26th, 1979, after driving five hours inland in Washington State to catch it from a hill top.