This Week in Essays


At Longreads, Mojgan Ghazirad ventures through Tehran and the inaccessible past.

“I entered the mosque afraid and exited feeling proud.” After the terrorist attack in New Zealand, prayer becomes an act of defiance for Aymann Ismail, writing for Slate.

After facing down heart issues and addiction, David M. Olsen gets real about staying alive here at The Rumpus.

“Like a romantic relationship, a close friendship provides the tools needed to enact actual, lasting damage, but is made somehow worse by the simple fact that friends are supposed to accept you in spite of your faults.” The nature of friendship in Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels cuts too close to home for Megan Reynolds at Jezebel.

Dori Ostermiller angles for her place in an MFA program and only becomes prey, in this week’s ENOUGH back at The Rumpus.

“In my family, praise and attention were handled carefully. Like radioactive isotopes.” Kirsten Voris uncovers birth stories and family secrets at Punctuate.


Logo art by Max Winter.

Tamara Matthews is a Chicago-based freelance writer and editor. Visit or find her on Twitter: @writingtoatee. More from this author →