Such Perfection

An examination of beauty, objectivity, and disability.

Source: The Believer
Published: Jun 1, 2019
Length: 22 minutes (5,695 words)

A Natural Mother

Vivia spent a large portion of her monthly budget on the purchase. She waited twenty-five long days, and when the USPS box appeared, it was heavier than she’d expected. For a moment, she wondered if maybe there was a real baby inside. But, of course, it was a doll.

Source: The Believer
Published: Jun 1, 2019
Length: 23 minutes (5,800 words)

Send in the Clones

A rogue group called the Archangel Ancient Tree Archive is moving cuttings and seeds from California’s ancient sequoia north to Oregon to save the species from the coming effects of climate change. But should they? Maybe in a world faced with global environmental disaster, the old rules no longer apply.

Source: The Believer
Published: Apr 1, 2019
Length: 23 minutes (5,919 words)

Leave No Trace

One Australian examines her life and Australia’s history, wondering whether her country’s fixation on stories of missing children, particularly missing females, is simply its way to avoid confronting its colonial origins, where indigenous Australians were treated as invisible.

Source: The Believer
Published: Apr 1, 2019
Length: 38 minutes (9,601 words)

Thirteen Ways of Seeing Nature in LA: Part I

A nature writer in Los Angeles tackles her genre’s fundamental problems, which is also the problem of how modern Americans relate to the natural world. And yes, there is nature in L.A.

Source: The Believer
Published: Apr 1, 2006
Length: 19 minutes (4,828 words)

An Axe for the Frozen Sea

““You too have your tools,” wrote Kafka in a passage about fear, and I thought of that line whenever I was scared: I will get through this. I can talk to friends, write about it. Years later, I came across a different translation of the same text: “You too have your weapons.”

Source: The Believer
Published: Sep 28, 2018
Length: 25 minutes (6,260 words)

Raphael Saadiq Interviewed by Elise R. Peterson

Musician Raphael Saadiq talks about soul music and his own career’s longevity.

Source: The Believer
Published: Aug 1, 2018
Length: 21 minutes (5,492 words)

Broken Time

Steve Silberman’s deep-dive into Bill Evans, one of the most enigmatic figures in jazz, is a fantastic read that examines the intersection of what happens when virtuosic talent inexplicably falls short. Silberman also probes his own obsession with ‘Nardis,’ a complex arrangement which Miles Davis, who employed Evans as a member of his sextet, said the pianist could play “the way it was meant to be played.”

Source: The Believer
Published: Aug 1, 2018
Length: 24 minutes (6,184 words)

Midwestern Gothic

When the author’s high school friend supposedly dies from accidental drowning, he doubts the official story, but his academic mind soon leads him down a dark path, and through an examination of conspiratorial thought itself.

Source: The Believer
Published: Feb 8, 2018
Length: 20 minutes (5,037 words)

For G-d So Loved Haiti

During the eight years after Haiti’s catastrophic 7.0 earthquake, a litany of opportunistic mega-church preachers have become popular and rich comforting the healing nation. They often battle each other for market dominance and battle Haiti’s indigenous Vodou tradition to gain more followers, influence and money. Many Haitian evangelicals and white foreign missionaries view Vodou as a demonic practice, but in a country continually enslaved and exploited, Vodou offers a source of autonomy and liberation from outside control.

Source: The Believer
Published: Dec 1, 2017
Length: 41 minutes (10,390 words)