Masha Gessen.

“…I think this is the job of writers right now: to describe what we do not yet see, or what we see but cannot yet describe, which is a condition almost indistinguishable from not seeing.

I want to find a way to describe a world in which people are valued not for what they produce but for who they are—in which dignity is not a precarious state.

I want to find a way to describe economic and social equality as a central value—a world in which inequality is, therefore, shrinking.

I want to find a way to describe prosperity that is not linked to the accumulation of capital.

Find a way to describe happiness as a public good, and the current pervasive crisis of mental health in a way that doesn’t involve the frames of norms and pathology, or the language of “fixing” people.

Find a way to describe a world without borders as we have known them—a world in which nation-states are not prized or assumed.

Find a way to describe learning that does not involve the warehousing and disciplining of children.

Find a way to describe justice whose objective is not retribution but restoration.

Find a way to describe politics that are genuinely participatory, that reflect the complexity and diversity of human experience, that avoid arbitrary divisions along party lines and emphasize coöperation around common goals.

Find an ever more complicated and evolving way to write about gender.

Find ways to describe kinship that is not the nuclear family or framed by the nuclear family. Find ways to tell the stories of friendship and community.

Find ways to describe a humanity that protects its planet, itself, and other creatures that inhabit the earth with us. Find words for reasonable and responsible coöperation.

Find a way to describe public space that is genuinely public and accessible, and include in this the virtual space of social networks and other media.

Above all, find a way to describe a world in which the way things are is not the way things have always been and will always be, in which imagination is not only operant but prized and nurtured.

And find a way to describe many other things that are true but not seen, seen but not spoken, and things that are not but could be.”
How George Orwell Predicted the Challenge of Writing Today

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