Reportage

Back from Afghanistan

A mother I walk alone … I’ll be walking alone for a long time now. He killed someone … My son … With a kitchen axe – I used to trim and beat meat with it. He... Read more

Face Blindness

Last winter I got an email inviting me to a dinner party. Let’s say the host’s name was Barry Johnson. I’ve known him and his wife casually over the years, but ... Read more

On Ivanka and Blindness

We are now deep in the era of Trump. As a magazine, we’ve accepted our role. We don’t employ an investigative team. Our contributors’ page lacks a platoon of reporters. Our only Washington correspondent practically filled the last issue. (We’re givin... Read more

The Zen of Eminem

In the face of this kind of misplaced hysteria, good rappers don’t back down. They defend the right to use words in the same way any novelist or filmmaker is free to do. They tell their personal truths.

Days of Shame

He started right in yelling, ‘Not my president! Not my president!’ His voice was high and clear and loud. He was fearless. Whenever he said, ‘Not my president!’ the people near them smiled coldly and said, ‘Yes, he is. He is now.’

NW11

It’s a painstaking process, a learned performance. I spent years making small, conscious modifications to my character, to be more British when I was in London, more Brazilian in Rio.

My Father’s House

Every summer we were ordered out into the garden with machetes to chop down the grass, which grew above our heads. We loathed having to spend summer days in manual labour, but we never dared question our father’s authority.

Dark Man at the Airport

I followed dutifully to a metal table where the men unzipped my suitcase, because they could unzip my suitcase if they wanted, they could search me if they wanted, they could detain me if they wanted.

How The Light Gets In

If you really want to encourage people to read literature, you’re better off adding a certain mystique. Because the secret the writer is faced with, the secret of language and of reality, is shared by the reader.