Turning Points and Revolution

  This is a revolutionary moment in that everything is changing. But it’s not a revolution, because most of the forces we’re all reacting to (pandemic, injustice, a massive failure to find common moral ground) are not forces put into … Continued

“John Le Carré”

After a briefly too-long period of agonizing over the matter, I’ve concluded that it’s impossible to artistically justify why we, at TLR, wanted to do a John le Carré issue, and nearly impossible to summarize how the magazine you’re reading … Continued

“Game Theory”

    The husband of one of our editors was pursuing a doctorate in Game Theory when I first arrived at the magazine six years ago. I thought then I had never heard of a more evocative subject for advanced … Continued

“Women’s Studies”

Women’s Studies when I was in college was a fairly straightforward, interdepartmental major that, at my school, emphasized continental literary theory and its blunter-edged cousin, identity politics, as well as (interestingly enough) health care from a social-historical perspective. Other colleges, … Continued

“Hawks Do Not Share”

Ernest Hemingway met F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald in 1925 when they were all living in Paris. The Great Gatsby had just come out and, according to Fitzgerald, “was not selling well but had very fine reviews.” Hemingway pursued the … Continued


We are living a feverish moment. Politics are heated to the point of being carnivalesque. The planet is overheated and threatens to extinguish. Tempers are high, mores are in a freefall of correction. Education is on one end a riot … Continued

Why Babel Fish?

I’ve been thinking about this theme of Babel Fish for almost a year now, and it’s never stopped seeming like a broad and suggestive portal for the pieces gathered here. For those who aren’t familiar with Douglas Adams’s 1979 novel … Continued


I haven’t been in much of a surrendering mood lately, though I’m sure that I thought of surrender as an intriguing and plausible emotion when we first settled on the theme of Uncle for this issue. Art certainly doesn’t exist … Continued

“Fight” Cover Artist: Fazal Sheikh

Afghan girl born in Exile. Afghan Refuge Villa, Urghuch, North Pakistan, 1996. Used by permission of the artist: courtesy PACE /MACGILL Gallery.   Cover artist, Fazal Sheikh, uses photographs to document people living in displaced and marginalized communities around the … Continued

Street Cred

Sometimes the TLR issue titles are esoteric because they are trying to capture the elusive theme that links all the stories and poems in a given issue. Sometimes the titles are trying to capture an elusive theme as well as … Continued

Invisible Cities

  It feels to me as if I’ve always known Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities. As if my brain were born and instantly had Invisible Cities in its matter to refer to. But that wasn’t the order of things. Pippi Longstocking came first and … Continued

The Lives of the Saints

    A number of years ago I began a simple research project inspired by a basically straightforward question that turned out to have a diabolically insensate answer. I wanted to find out how a person becomes a priest. I … Continued

Refrigerator Mothers

  I met our cover artist, Israeli photographer Elinor Carucci, about fifteen years ago. I’d been assigned to interview her about her debut series, Closer, by the then new arty high-concept online sex magazine, Nerve.com. Elinor’s pictures weren’t sexy—exactly. There … Continued