Elif Batuman

3 articles

The Big Dig

Visiting the treasures – bear skulls, footprints, an ancient emerald necklace – that surfaced with shipwrecks at Yenikapi in Turkey.


Exquisite Corpse

Fifteen writers from a variety of genres contribute to an original short story.

"We’d wanted roles in this flick where there’s nothing left on earth to eat but cockroaches and babies. Verisimilitude, Francis said. To win great roles, do great stuff. We picked Trieste because the exchange rate was good. But rumors gypsies sold babies were false. So we stole one. We ate it, but got caught. I escaped; the gypsies chained him in a basement. He had to get their “queen” pregnant in six cycles. Five had passed."


The Murder of Leo Tolstoy

The author attends a Tolstoy conference as a grad student. She wears flip-flops, sweatpants and a flannel shirt, and tries to determine if Tolstoy was murdered.