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Journal 197

Equestrienne (At the Cirque Fernando) , Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec

This week — the gangs of El Salvador, Parisian horsewomen of the Belle Époque, an earlier internet age, and a profile of the UAE's leader Mohammed bin Zayed.

If you only read one thing — The New Yorker on a life without pain is worth the time.


A World Without Pain | The New Yorker | Science

A remarkable story about a woman who doesn't feel either physical pain or negative emotions, and how humans process pain more broadly.

The Horsewomen of the Belle Époque | The Paris Review | Life

A story describing the world of the écuryères, "transgressive horsewomen of turn-of-the-century Paris" who played starring roles in the circuses of the time and were amongst the subjects of notable artists and authors.

The Early Internet, Explained by One Weird Celine Dion Fan Site | The Atlantic | Culture

The story of a different internet era, told through a website called Celine Dreams, whose zenith was between 2003 and 2007, and whose purpose was for its founder to gather and then interpret visitors' dreams about Celine Dion.

Mohammed bin Zayed’s Dark Vision of the Middle East’s Future | The New York Times | Politics

A piece seeking to deconstruct the world view and ambitions of the leader of the UAE, a key player in a region under severe political strain. It's noteworthy that the response online to this piece has been extremely divided, ranging from dubbing it "a sinister piece of hagiography" to an "exceptional profile" based on an "extremely rare interview".

How the US helped create El Salvador’s bloody gang war | The Guardian | Society

A piece tracing the roots of El Salvador's notorious, brutal, MS-13 gang to 1980s Los Angeles.


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