Thirteen of the journal’s best essays, “Dispatch” blog posts, and reviews as chosen by staff, internet analytic “pageviews,” and defiant relevance.
It was Christmas and Bobby was a good boy and we worked hard for our money. All of that must mean something. What is the point of a God and His Son if this hardship does not mean anything, you know, the hardship of this life, the grinding of it cannot be pointless, can it?
When did food move from sustenance, holiday ritual, and occasional treats to a consuming avocation with its own vocabulary, gear, techniques, and media? There are more devotees than most religions can attract, and their rituals are charged with significance.
Never pin your financial hopes on a legume. Ham and beans is really about making use of what one already has at hand, driving one’s own good luck by not wasting opportunities, such as a few handfuls of hard beans and the inedible shank of a pig left over from Christmas dinner.
The Modern Christmas in America is an account of the evolution of Christmas in the United States between 1880 and 1940; these were the years of the formation of Christmas as we celebrate it today.