Letters to My Brother (or: How to Live in a Country That Requires Your Destruction)

Brian Alsup · 09/05/15 01:10PM

The following correspondence between Brian Alsup and Kiese Laymon took place during the week of August 31, 2015. As John Callahan once wrote of the decades-long exchange between Albert Murray and Ralph Ellison in Trading Twelves: The Selected Letters, it is “the bounty of a rare and spontaneous friendship in which each taps into the deepest experience of each other.” Together, Alsup and Laymon reckon with black love, liberation, and shouldering the weight of white terror in America.

Letters From Death Row: Douglas Feldman, Texas Inmate 999326

Hamilton Nolan · 02/01/13 12:46PM

As part of an ongoing project, we've written letters to American death row prisoners scheduled for execution this year. We asked them about their lives in prison, their daily routines, and their thoughts on the American justice system. Today, a response from Douglas Feldman, a death row prisoner in Texas.

Exclusive: My Occidental College Love Letters

Max Read · 05/02/12 02:30PM

Today, Vanity Fair published several excerpts from the romantic correspondence of a young Barack Obama, displaying a penetrating mind and an impressive command of language on the part of the future president, who had just transferred from Occidental College to Columbia. His letters, as biographer David Maraniss writes, "wove [their] way though literature, politics, and personal philosophy"; our own Maureen O'Connor notes that they "reference T.S. Eliot, 'bourgeois liberalism,' and Jacques Derrida."