Arts and Culture

Stained glass in the chapel on Dog Mountain

If you are now or have ever been a dog lover, there’s a place you need to go — Dog Mountain in Northern Vermont. 150 acres of hills, trails, and ponds just for pups, plus a dog chapel for memorializing lost pets and an annual summer dog party.More

the looming monster of american myth

Social critic Alissa Quart says the American ideal of the self-made, rugged individual is built on a lie. In her book "Bootstrapped," she argues that even the people who preached the gospel of self-reliance, like Laura Ingalls Wilder and Henry David Thoreau, didn’t live up to it themselves. More

an online number going up

When producer Angelo Bautista was growing up, he dreamed of being in the internet. Not on the internet, but inside of it. Now, he's torn about social media. He's still addicted to scrolling, but posting about his own life — that's another story. But if nobody sees you on the internet, do you exist? More

a woman looking in a mirror

When you look online, you might think the most important pursuit in life is self-creation — optimizing, curating, branding yourself. Social critic Tara Isabella Burton says our current obsession with personal identity has deeply religious roots, which then got co-opted by advertisers and the self-help movement.More

The Sandman. Writer Neil Gaiman on the set of The Sandman.

Neil Gaiman's "Sandman" graphic novel is now a Netflix series. Gaiman has made a career out of tapping into our unconscious dreams and fears. In 2003, Steve Paulson traveled to Gaiman's home in Wisconsin to talk about where his story ideas come from.More

Just over 200 years ago, a group of renegade German writers and philosophers came together in a small town and forever changed who we think we are. Andrea Wulf tells this story in her book “Magnificent Rebels: The First Romantics and the Invention of the Self.” More

fireflies

As a documentary poet, Camille Dungy writes not just about headline-making news, but about news on a more intimate scale — about motherhood, marriage, and her garden. It’s an approach she says was very much inspired by the "godmother" of documentary poetry, Muriel Rukeyeser. More

Boots at right angles.

Kaia Sand is a journalist whose day job is executive director of the community newspaper Street Roots in Portland, Oregon. She’s also a poet and she uses both lenses – journalism and poetry – to write about the people she knows and things she sees firsthand in her city. More

We asked Arab-American poet Philip Metres to write an original poem in the style he’s known for — documentary poetry — a genre that blends techniques from journalism and poetry to offer a fresh way of hearing today’s news.More

Jenny Odell

Lately it’s been feeling like time is speeding up.  Whether it’s the news cycle, social media, the information economy or global warming, the pace of life is accelerating beyond what many of us can handle. Jenny Odell blames the clock. More

Natalie Merchant

Singer Natalie Merchant rediscovered poetry in the company of her young daughter. Why does she love the poems by Victorian and early 20th century poets?More

Digital projector

Eliza Smith is the CEO and cofounder of Cosmic Standard, a podcast company. She also has a new podcast in the works – based on fear. She tells Anne Strainchamps that horror stories help her manage and work through her anxiety.More

Jennifer Michael Hecht

When it comes to wonder and awe, historian and poet Jennifer Michael Hecht, the author of “Doubt” and “The End of the Soul,” says there’s another, even older tradition we can all access – poetry.More

Lulu Miller

Lulu Miller's latest project is a "Radiolab" podcast series for children: "Terrestrials." She explains for how nature and child-like sensibility can help adults rediscover a sense of wonder.More

Cabin in the woods

Howard Axelrod was accidentally blinded in one eye in a freak accident when he was in college. Disoriented and depressed, he retreated to an off-the-grid cabin in the Vermont wilderness. More

A discarded pen of a poet.

Renunciation can be a creative force. American scholar Ross Posnock tells stories of writers, philosophers and artists who've committed "acts of abandonment," leaving careers and creative lives behind. They weren't failures, Posnock says — they were necessary departures that led to creative and intellectual breakthroughs.More

phantom islands

Uzbekistani electronic musician Andrew Pekler is fascinated by "phantom islands" — islands that 15th and 16th century explorers made up to please wealthy patrons of their expeditions. So, he built an digital map of them, and added a soundtrack.More

Charmaine Minniefield

"Praise houses" were places where Black people would gather in secret to affirm their African identity and cultural practices. Artist-activist Charmaine Minniefield explains how her Praise House Project pushes back against the erasure of history.More

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