ESSAYS AND CRITICISM

 
 
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“Seeing Double” in the New Yorker (May 16, 2016 Innovations issue)

An essay on uninventing mirrors. “Living in a world full of reflections has helped us know ourselves better, in a skin-deep sense, but it has also bred dissociation, obsession. By transforming our faces into images for scrutiny, the mirror has made us more careful about ourselves as objects, at the expense of caring for ourselves as whole beings.”


Letter of Recommendation: How It’s Made” in the NY Times Magazine (July 2016)

“When you turn on a TV set and immerse yourself in images of human beings doing human activities — looking for unusually small houses, awaiting elimination on a reality show, solving murders in a procedural — it’s easy to forget that what you’re watching is not people but a machine, its network of pixels, subpixels, liquid crystals and transistors working silently in the background, allowing us to dwell in a bustling kingdom of our own design. But “How It’s Made,” a show devoted to the manufacturing processes that yield our most mundane and treasured human creations, reminds the viewer that time spent watching TV is time spent not with people but in the company of an incredible object.”

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Cooking with Chef Watson” in the New Yorker (November 2016 Tech Issue)

“The recipe also calls for “sixty-seven medium trimmed Easter-egg radishes,” black beans, cinnamon, curly parsley, marjoram, and Calvados. Cook, salt to taste, then top with Jack cheese, olive oil, and the grapes, “for squeezing over.” And there you have it: the computer-assisted future of cuisine, in the form of a pile of sweet-smelling, mud-colored radishes.”