Essays Archives - The Millions

May 24, 2017

Mary Gaitskill and the Dignity of the Nowhere Girl 0

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Mary Gaitskill comes alive when turning toward what others shun.

May 24, 2017

The Mathematical Poet: Exploring Edgar Allan Poe’s Logical Imagination 0

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In “The Philosophy of Composition,” Poe is critiquing Poe with the objectivity of a scientist studying a specimen under a microscope.

May 23, 2017

Priestdaddies 3

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Why get an education when revelation is free? Why delay marriage when you’ve already given your whole self away once to God? There was no guidance against these choices. Recklessness was baptized as maturity.

May 18, 2017

A Space Ripe for Experimentation: The Future of Print Literary Journals 0

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If we accept the premise that editors will continue printing, then the question isn’t “Is print dead?” but rather: what should print do to distinguish itself from digital?

May 17, 2017

Prescient and Precious: On Joan Didion 5

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Joan Didion is an extraordinarily gifted and prescient writer whose enterprise seems to me to be poisoned by something that may or not be fatal: she can be cloyingly precious.

May 16, 2017

The Ballad of Thom and Joseles: Communities of the Carnal Heart 0

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Gunn lived much of his life by the principle of free love: a deliberate transcendence of socially prescribed coupling practices.

May 12, 2017

Why the Link Between Edward Gorey and John Bellairs Remains Unbreakable 2

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Gorey’s illustrations give off a sense of hopelessness and terror. Very often they perfectly match and heighten scenes from the novels.

May 11, 2017

Dragons Are for White Kids with Money: On the Friction of Geekdom and Race 145

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If geekdom was never coded as hyper-white, why then is there such a loud resistance to the inclusion of non-white, non-male, non-binary, and non-heterosexual stories and characters?

May 9, 2017

Fear and Literati in Las Vegas: On ‘The Believer’s’ Move to Sin City 3

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The vows columns might note that The Believer and Las Vegas share a certain weirdness. A wedding toast might say that bringing indie culture to the ultimate resort town is a great McSweeneyian adventure.

May 8, 2017

Make Contributors’ Notes Great Again 2

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The stream of journal titles became an indicator of stature, a look-see-here, I’m in the Kenyon Review! And you’re not. My own contributor’s note was just as guilty of journal-shaming.