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Essays

1025 results
Page 1
A black-and-white photo of 5 women operating a phone switchboard in 1915.

Saving the kindness supply chain

Life in 2021 is hard for everyone—are you making it harder?

Almost two years into a pandemic, life in 2021 is tough for almost everyone. Roz Warren says that every day, you have a chance to make it better—or worse.
Roz Warren

Roz Warren

Essays 4 minute read
The Art Museum, with its giant east stairway large in the foreground. Higher up, people sit in groups on the steps.

Who decides on the outside of the Philadelphia Museum of Art?

The right steps for our public spaces

As new plans for a people-friendly Parkway roll out, the Philadelphia Museum of Art remains an important part of Philly’s public space—but do the people on the outside matter? Camille Bacon-Smith considers.
Camille Bacon-Smith

Camille Bacon-Smith

Essays 5 minute read
A man holding a spray bottle walks down an ornately carpeted stairway, wiping the banister as he goes. He wears a face mask.

As a theater critic, I’m prioritizing coverage of events that require Covid vaccination for all

Getting back to the theater, as safely as possible

As companies in Philadelphia and beyond prepare for a return to in-person performances, theater and music critic Cameron Kelsall knows vaccines are the key to safety, even amidst the Delta surge.
Cameron Kelsall

Cameron Kelsall

Essays 5 minute read
A selfie showing Anndee Hochman in a large mirror on the wall of a freshly orange-painted living room with a leather couch.

Repairing the world takes all kinds of builders, including the ones with words

The tools of tikkun olam

A volunteer stint repairing a Germantown row house reprises Anndee Hochman’s teenage impulse to wield a hammer in lieu of words, and reminds her that all tools can both create and destroy.
Anndee Hochman

Anndee Hochman

Essays 5 minute read
An inside view from the back of a commercial airplane, with the white cabin ceiling overhead and people in rows of seats.

When white people hear racist comments from fellow travelers, how should they respond?

Bigotry in the air

When a stranger shares racist views with you, how do you respond, especially if you’re stuck in the next seat? Roz Warren considers.
Roz Warren

Roz Warren

Essays 5 minute read
A nighttime city view in Islamabad, Pakistan, with dozens of boxy white buildings and colorful lights under a cloudy sky.

From Islamabad to Santa Fe: Finding the elegance in my difference

Ready for my next leap

Shaheer Naveed is BSR’s summer 2021 intern. He remembers what he learned about fitting in during his first trip to the United States from his home in Pakistan.
Shaheer Naveed

Shaheer Naveed

Essays 4 minute read
Katie Samson, a white woman, is outdoors with a group of about 6 smiling people. She uses a wheelchair & wears a blue hat

Witnessing the Impact: What will post-pandemic life be like for disabled people?

A world not built for me—until now?

BSR is partnering with the Witnessing the Impact of COVID-19 in Disabled People’s Lives archive project. Writer, educator, and disability self-advocate Katie Samson asks whether we’ll keep considering accessibility when the pandemic wanes.
Katie Samson

Katie Samson

Essays 6 minute read
The dancers of the Pennsylvania Ballet onstage at the Performance Garage in spring 2021. (Photo by Alexander Iziliaev.)

Dance lovers ask why the Pennsylvania Ballet is now the Philadelphia Ballet

Dance of the rebrand

As arts producers across town return to in-person performance, the former Pennsylvania Ballet announced a surprising rebrand. Camille Bacon-Smith asks whether it’s moving the company forward.
Camille Bacon-Smith

Camille Bacon-Smith

Essays 4 minute read
What could we change if we applied our intention to it? Kyle Allen and Kathryn Newton in ‘The Map of Tiny Perfect Things.’ (Image courtesy of Amazon Studios.)

What can ‘Naked’ and ‘Map of Tiny Perfect Things’ teach us about unsticking our lives?

Time to deconstruct determinism

When Michelle Chikaonda continued her very own pandemic festival of time-loop movies, she found out that the phrase “it’s time” has more than one meaning.
Michelle Chikaonda

Michelle Chikaonda

Essays 5 minute read
A way out of the basement. (Photo via Shutterstock, by Igor Normann.)

The mixologist’s daughter: raising a glass to reinvention, again

Happy hours, then and now

Over the course of almost 30 years, some things change and some don’t—and Anndee Hochman, from writing to bartending and back again, learns that personal reinventions don’t have to shake the foundations of family.
Anndee Hochman

Anndee Hochman

Essays 5 minute read