The Top 5 Longreads of the Week

This week, we’re sharing stories from Arundhati Roy, Josh Levin, Susan Matthews, and Molly Olmstead, Alison Criscitiello, Grayson Haver Currin, and Alan Siegel.

This week, we’re sharing stories from Arundhati Roy, Josh Levin, Susan Matthews, and Molly Olmstead, Alison Criscitiello, Grayson Haver Currin, and Alan Siegel.

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1. ‘We are Witnessing a Crime Against Humanity’: Arundhati Roy on India’s Covid Catastrophe

Arundhati Roy | The Guardian | April 28, 2021 | 5,369 words

“The system has not collapsed. The ‘system’ barely existed. The government – this one, as well as the Congress government that preceded it – deliberately dismantled what little medical infrastructure there was.”

2. Mr. Bailey’s Class

Josh Levin, Susan Matthews, and Molly Olmstead | Slate | April 29, 2021 | 6,763

“Before he was Philip Roth’s biographer, Blake Bailey taught the eighth grade. His students say he made them feel special. They worshipped him. They trusted him. He used it all against them.”

3. Contraindications

Alison Criscitiello | Alpinist Magazine | September 22, 2017 | 6,890 words

“I covered the rock beneath me in tears and beat it with my fists. The word No echoed off the cold and shadowed face of Rachu Tangmu. In less than a minute, I unleashed the emotions that I knew I would lock down for weeks, until I got us home. I closed my eyes and wiped my face. Calm and even, I did CPR for an hour despite the obvious signs that she had passed away. It is what you do, so I did it.”

4. Emily Ford Hiked 1,200 Miles in the Dead of Winter

Grayson Haver Currin | Outside | May 4, 2021 | 2,276 words

Ford hiked, instead, for many of the same reasons that “lanky white dudes” or anyone else might take to the woods: to pay attention to herself, to have space to think through the life she had led for 28 years and where she wanted it to go.

5. Two Assholes Lost in the Woods: An Oral History of ‘Pine Barrens’

Alan Siegel | The Ringer | May 5, 2021 | 5,600 words

“Twenty years after it aired, David Chase and Co. look back on the one of the wildest, boldest, funniest episodes of ‘The Sopranos’ ever made.”