Browse our archive of print issues below, back to our founding in 1975.
Lead essayist Donna Murch writes that, “historically, the division between ‘dope’ and medicine was the race and class of users.” By using the concept of “racial capitalism” to examine the opioid crisis alongside the War on Drugs, Murch brings an otherwise familiar story into new territory. To understand the twisted logic that created the divergent responses to drug use—succor and sympathy for white users, prison and expulsion for people of color—Murch shows how a racialized regime of drug prohibitions led Purdue Pharma to market OxyContin specifically to whites.
Alongside Murch, contributors consider how racial capitalism helps us understand the history of international banking, the commodification of black masculinity, the buying and selling of women’s eggs, Michelle Obama’s dubious advice to black youth, and the workings of affirmative action at elite universities.
“Rural spaces,” writes Elizabeth Catte, author of What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia, “are often thought of as places absent of things, from people of color to modern amenities to radical politics. The truth, as usual, is more complicated.”
With activists, historians, and political scientists as guides, Left Elsewhere explores the radical politics of rural America—its past, its priorities, and its moral commitments—that mainstream progressives overlook. This volume shows how these communities are fighting, and winning, some of the left’s biggest battles. From novel health care initiatives in the face of the opioid crisis to living wages for teachers, these struggles do not fall neatly into the “puny language,” as Rev. William Barber says, of Democrat or Republican. Instead they help us rethink the rural–urban opposition at the heart of U.S. politics. The future of the left, this collection argues, could be found elsewhere.
“All history,” writes Maximillian Alvarez in his contribution to this issue, “is the history of empire—a bid for control of that greatest expanse of territory, the past.” Evil Empire confronts these histories head-on, exploring the motivations, consequences, and surprising resiliency of empire and its narratives. Contributors grapple with the economic, technological, racial, and rhetorical elements of U.S. power and show how the effects are far-reaching and, in many ways, self-defeating. Drawing on a range of disciplines—from political science to science fiction—our authors approach the theme with imagination and urgency, animated by the desire to strengthen the fight for a better future. Purchase your copy today.
From the breast pump to freezing women’s eggs, new technologies have long promised to “liberate” women, but the results are often uneven, freeing some women while worsening the oppression of others. Once and Future Feminist explores the intersection of feminism and tech with guest editor Merve Emre. The collection explores the advantages and disadvantages technology offers feminism from all angles: sexual, biological, economic, and political. In the age of Silicon Valley, these issues are more pressing than ever, and this collection pushes readers to consider not only whether emancipatory feminism is possible today, but also what it might look like.
The poems in What Nature were not written on Walden Pond. They were not written because poetry can save the Earth. If they are a far cry from last century’s nature poetry, it is because “nature” today is a far cry from sanctuary or retreat. These poems are not at ease and there is no place left to retreat. They are themselves far cries: urgent calls for rethinking our place on an imperiled planet.
April 4, 2018, marked the fiftieth anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s death. This collection grapples with his enduring legacy. Though he is widely celebrated as a national hero—martyr to an inspiring dream about our country's largest possibilities—many younger Americans now greet his name with suspicion, viewing him as an essentially conservative figure. These essays offer critical engagement in place of canonization, recovering—and scrutinizing—the profoundly radical nature of King's political, moral, and religious thought.
Reader Katia Fowler says, “Global Dystopias is shattering and marvelous. I am in awe. Thank you for ripping my heart out and cradling it at the same time.” Publishers Weekly writes, “[S]ome of the best contributions . . . include nuanced examinations of gender-based oppression. In Charlie Jane Anders’s astoundingly good ‘Don’t Press Charges and I Won’t Sue,’ the narrator is forced . . . into a body she doesn’t want and didn’t ask for. Maria Dahvana Headley’s ‘Memoirs of an Imaginary Country’ explores the connection between the colonization of women’s bodies and colonization of non-Western countries. Tananarive Due’s ‘The Reformatory’ reveals a single moment of horrific abuse in a young black boy’s . . . life. Maureen McHugh’s ‘Cannibal Acts’ and Nalo Hopkinson’s ‘Waving at Trains’ are excellent stories of viral apocalypses and their aftermath.”
Many of the critical issues of our time—from clean water to health care to schools—are about public goods, things that are owed to the members of a democratic society. In the United States, these goods are endangered and access to them is constricted by class and race. Against this background, Trump’s nearly empty White House stands as a symbol of the crisis our democracy faces. In this Forum we consider public goods: what they are, how to provide them, how to ensure equitable access. The debate about public goods is at heart a debate about what it means to be an American. What is at stake is not only what we owe to each other but who we are.