Dangers of Traveling While Female

Today’s post comes from Tara Isabella Burton. Her essays, reviews, and travel writing can be found at the Los Angeles Review of Books, The New Statesman, Salon, Guernica, The Rumpus, Conde Nast Traveller, and many other places. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Arc, Shimmer, The Dr TJ Eckleburg Review, and more. She is the winner of The Spectator‘s 2012 Shiva Naipaul Memorial Prize for travel writing and the author of the novel A […]

The California Prisoners’ Hunger Strike, Day 40

“We are not in search of death; we are looking for real life”  – Tiananmen Square Hunger Strike Declaration, 1989 In an eight by ten foot cell in California, Todd Ashker is starving. He hasn’t eaten in nearly six weeks, and his body has begun to lose muscle mass. Exhaustion has set in, and his organ […]

The New Majority: Report Documents Diversity in Bicycling

As we bid goodbye to May, we also say farewell to National Bike Month – but New York City’s new bike sharing program is just getting started. And according to a new report released by the Sierra Club and the League of American Bicyclists, the use of bicycles has doubled in the last decade, with […]

Book Review: How the Light Gets In: Writing as a Spiritual Practice

While I believe we should all be able to worship whatever and however we like, I don’t exercise that right in any traditional sense. When I left my parents’ home and went off to college, I stopped going to church, and haven’t really looked back. I don’t feel a void where once was the incessant […]

New Coalition Unites to End Homelessness in NYC

Today’s guest post comes from Soheil Rezayazdi. Soheil is a Communications Officer at the Supportive Housing Network of New York, a nonprofit advocacy organization with offices in New York City and Albany. Soheil operates the Network’s website, newsletter, social media outlets, and non-digital communications efforts. He does similar work for United to End Homelessness, a […]

Want Equal Pay For Women? Raise the Minimum Wage

Today’s post comes from Julie Vogtman.  Julie is Senior Counsel for the Family Economic Security Program at the National Women’s Law Center. She works on a range of issues involving economic support for low-income women and their families, including minimum wage policies, unemployment benefits, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). Follow the National Women’s […]

What’s in a Word? A Lot, When That Word is “Illegal”

On Tuesday, the Associated Press finally struck the dehumanizing and legally inaccurate term “illegal immigrant” from their stylebook. The updated guidelines explain that the term illegal can be used by journalists to describe an action, but no longer to describe a person. This shift is momentous, and congratulations are in order—but hardly to the AP, […]

Counting Gender Inequality in Publishing, Year Three

March is Gender Equality Month, as well as Women’s History Month, which makes Monday’s release of VIDA’s “The Count” all the more timely. The Count tracks the number of female and male bylines, book reviewers, and authors reviewed in a variety of national magazines and literary publications, tallying them and displaying their findings in simple […]

HIV-Positive Inmates Too Expensive for Private Prison Operators?

Today’s post comes from Christopher Petrella. Petrella is a prisoners’ rights activist, a doctoral student at U.C. Berkeley in African American Studies, and a political journalist. You can follow him on Twitter @CFPetrella. Defenders of the for-profit prison industry reflexively insist that privatization—or the process of subjecting “correctional services” to market pressures—will naturally generate efficiencies […]

Black History Month Has Been an Epic Failure

Today’s post comes from Dion Rabouin. You can read his Sunday column at Atlanta Daily World, where he is the Digital Editor, and follow him on Twitter @DionRabouin. Malcolm X was fond of saying, “Our history did not begin in chains.” Yet every year that’s where Black History Month lesson plans in schools across America […]