Friday, December 5


Digital Darkness: When We Can’t Turn Away From Death Online

The author’s long-running relationship with the grotesque.


A Rape on Campus

A brutal assault and the struggle for justice at the University of Virginia.

Note 12/5/14: Rolling Stone has stated that they now doubt details of the facts reported in "A Rape on Campus."

More information is available in T. Rees Shapiro's "U-Va. Fraternity to Rebut Claims of Gang Rape in Rolling Stone" from The Washington Post.


Their Town

On the border of Utah and Arizona, Mormon fundamentalists have long lived according to their own rules. When a former sect member and his family moved to the town where he’d grown up, they expected a homecoming. What they got was a war.


My Great-Great-Aunt Discovered Francium. And It Killed Her.

75 years ago, Marguerite Perey unearthed an element while working as a technician in Marie Curie’s lab. Her achievement came at a great cost.

Thursday, December 4


How a Woman’s Rape at a Gay Nude Bar Sparked a Battle Over New Orleans’ Libertine Soul

In the gentrifying Bywater, the intertwined destinies of a legendary gay pool-bar and a woman who was drugged there.


Tilda Swinton Is in a World of Her Own

On the actress’s stellar year.



On the 1934 lynching of Claude Neal, and the Florida town that kept the identity of those responsible a secret.

Wednesday, December 3


The Golden Quarter

Why the boom in scientific progress stalled.


Longform Podcast #120: Katie J.M. Baker

Katie J.M. Baker is a reporter for BuzzFeed News.

“I went to Steubenville a year after the sexual assault to cover their first big football game of the season and I was face-to-face with these people who I had been writing about without knowing much about them. From far away it seems like, do these details matter? Do we care if these people’s lives get messed up when the narrative is so strong, when Steubenville now stands for more awareness around rape culture? But when you’re there, of course it matters. After that piece I realized I didn’t want to blog anymore and I wanted to just focus on reporting.”

Thanks to Casper, Scribd, and TinyLetter for sponsoring this week's episode.

Show notes »

The Bitcoin Boy

On a 16-year-old Silicon Valley wunderkind.


Iraq: The New War

A 2003 essay that foreshadows the emergence of the Islamic State a decade later – an insurgency incited by American policy in Iraq during the early days of the war.