RufiThropeVela4

Why I Didn’t See the David (and other methodologies of heartbreak)

When I was twenty and graduating college, my grandmother gave me the kind of balls-out crazy gift-of-a-lifetime that characterized her gift-giving oeuvre. It was a three-week trip to Italy for myself and a friend. A shoestring trip to be sure: two coach tickets, enough money only for the cheapest hostels and maybe one meal a day. But it was Italy. I had been studying both ... [Continue Reading]

Women We Read This Week

Women We Read This Week

Cornelia Hesse-Honegger's "Why I Traveled the World Hunting for Mutant Bugs" on Nautilus In this thought-provoking piece on her role as a scientific illustrator, Hesse-Honegger begins this piece with a beautifully rendered description of her painting process--exacting and scientific in itself, but not without a philosophical bent: "When I look at my insects through the ... [Continue Reading]

VelaBookmarked

Bookmarked: Angie Chuang’s Five Female Journalists

The term “female journalist” implies that the gendered modifier is necessary because we assume that a plain old “journalist” is male. As with “male nurse,” “female journalist” is a retronym that reminds us of prevailing gender stereotypes in the field. I grew up watching “girl journalists” like Hildy Johnson on His Girl Friday or Mary Tyler Moore. ... [Continue Reading]

Women We Read This Week

Women We Read This Week

Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich’s "Towards a Fight" in The Rumpus It’s difficult to summarize Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich’s “Towards a Fight” not only because it is so wide-spanning, but also because it is infinitely quotable. Marzano-Lesnevich writes about gay rights in the North and the South; she writes about New Orleans, a place fraught with challenges ... [Continue Reading]

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“Lenin Was Half-Jewish and So Can You”

My grandfather, Israel, always claimed it was my doing. I was nineteen and I was getting restless. My studies at the Moscow Oil and Gas Institute were entering their third year. Thermodynamics was replacing Math, and Pipeline Design was replacing the History of the Communist Party. If it didn’t dawn on me before that I was on my way to becoming an engineer, it was ... [Continue Reading]

Women We Read This Week

Women We Read This Week

Lizzy Goodman's "Kendrick Lamar, Hip-Hop's Newest Old-School Star" in The New York Times Magazine On the surface, this is a well-done profile of unexpected It hip-hop star Kendrick Lamar. Goodman depicts Lamar's struggles to balance the demands of fame and life on the road, with need for personal space in which to write highly anticipated new songs--and to stay sane. ... [Continue Reading]

VelaBookmarked

Bookmarked: Elissa Bassist’s Five Female Humor Writers

Editor's Note: Even in our hyper-connected age, it can be pretty easy to fall into the habit of reading the same writers in the same publications. One of the many things we've been shown running Vela is the breadth and diversity of female voices. We editors have been asking: how do we get out of our literary bubbles and find new writers? Welcome to Bookmarked, a new ... [Continue Reading]

Women We Read This Week

Women We Read This Week

Sara Corbett's "The Unbearable Lightness of Being the Boarder Queen" in Outside Never mind the mixed-up byline (the online version credits Michael Llewellyn). This March 2000 profile of pro skateboarder and snowboarder Cara-Beth Burnside is by the great Sara Corbett, and I read it the old-fashioned way a couple of nights ago: in print, in Outside's 25th anniversary ... [Continue Reading]

Photo: Jeff Archer

Testimony

If you enjoy this story, please consider supporting Vela on Kickstarter! We thank you infinitely for your support. Because of the fog, no one can enter San Quentin. Inmates must remain in their cells to be counted. We must remain on the outside. Nearly 100 people stand around, chatting, waiting to enter in order to watch prisoners perform a series of drama sketches, ... [Continue Reading]

Women We Read This Week

Women We Read This Week

Quinn Norton's "The Land That Never Has Been Yet" on Medium In her most recent piece for Medium, writer Quinn Norton begins with: It’s hard to write about your mom. She looms over you — at first literally — then over your life, like a mythic mountain laced with the river you drink from. And even as you travel away through time and she seems to get ... [Continue Reading]