This Week in Essays


“The pitiless beauty of the operation is that it’s all the same nerve endings, reclaimed like lumber from an old boat.” Andrea Long Chu gets bottom surgery and thinks about transformation, feminism, voids, and divides at n+1.

Mallika Rao writes for Topic on the mortal wound of losing a parent.

Katherine J. Anderson explores the complications of free will under capitalism at Public Books.

“Who could understand how my desire to provide my child with breastmilk had coupled with intense shame and revulsion at my body, more womanlike than it had ever been?”  Here at The Rumpus, Krys Malcolm Belc writes about complicated feelings on nonbinary breastfeeding.

Mandy Shunnarah writes a cogent validation of The Jerry Springer Show at Electric Literature.

“Grief reveals you for what you really are: not a solid mountain, but a building. Scaffolding and frame. Collapsible.” Daniel Elder clings to coffee as a means to rebuild through grief at Entropy.

Back at The Rumpus, Elizabeth Bevilacqua wrangles with tragedies that seem fated.


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 →