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Why We Tell Stories — The Atlantic

When an English archaeologist named George Smith was 31 years old, he became enchanted with an ancient tablet in the British Museum. Years earlier, in 1845, when Smith was only a five-year-old boy, Austen Henry Layard, Henry Rawlinson, and Hormuzd Rassam began excavations across what […]

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By JH Crawford

Short Fiction: An Orphan on Rivoli

THE WORD “INSANE” is too much of a blanket characteristic – too clinical – and with it comes all sorts of negative connotations. It’s a useful word though because it’s tough to describe Alex, who lived in a tiny chambre de bonne above the rue de […]

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Love in the Time of Twitter — The Atlantic

Social media filters relationships whether we like it or not, and new neuroscience research shows we’re increasingly drawing less of a distinction between real and digital interactions. A little more than a decade ago, a former professor of mine here in Paris was supposed to meet Jean Baudrillard […]

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"Lost in Translation." Courtesy of Focus Features.

The Eroticism of Placelessness

On the way loneliness, freedom, and romance are intertwined. For the past few weeks, I’ve woken up unsure exactly where I am. My bed, a modest full size, looks out onto a cobblestone courtyard framed by green linden trees and an intricately decorated castle. I’m […]

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Autumnal Adventures in August

Paris hasn’t had much of a summer. Temperatures have hovered around 60 degrees and most “summer” days have felt autumnal: cloudy skies, trees losing leaves, bouts of rain. So rather than sticking around the capital for the weekend, I went northwest to Normandy, a region practically […]

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The Beauty-Happiness Connection — The Atlantic

“Le Déjeuner,” an early painting by Claude Monet, isn’t particularly remarkable when compared to some of his other works. His “Les Nymphéas” series, for instance, includes nearly 250 large-scale oil paintings of the water lilies at his flower garden in Giverny. From his Thames-facing room […]

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