Society of Martha Washington Colonial Pageant in Laredo, Texas, is a debutante ball featuring teenagers in multi-thousand-dollar Martha Washington cosplay. Mostly Mexican teenagers. But it wasn’t always that way — towns shift, and so do identities.
“Houstonians call I-610 the Loop. It divides the city into two parts: inside the Loop and outside the Loop. The city circumference is marked by Beltway 8, the last buffer before you hit the suburbs. When I was a kid, I lived a neighborhood cluster beyond Beltway 8, west of the city. If you want to picture what that looked like, imagine absolutely nothing at all. Then add some rice fields and some football fields and an H-E-B. Your typical Southern suburban Americana. Still, this was Houston, so there was some semblance of diversity. Even a few decades ago, my family could find just about everything we were looking for (beef patties, black barbers, family friends) outside the city’s inner core.”
The Chinese government denies the mass internment of the Xinjiang region’s Turkic and Muslim peoples, but this forty-page collection of oral histories offers evidence of an enormous humanitarian crisis, with abuses ranging from brainwashing and forced labor to torture.
An examination of beauty, objectivity, and disability.
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.
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.
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.
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.
““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.”