I’m Counting My Family’s Thanksgiving Blessings. My Neighbors Aren’t All So Fortunate

In Watts, One Woman's Seasonal Joy Is Tempered by Concern for Her Community

In November, 2013, Shanice Joseph wrote an essay for Zócalo about how her financially challenged family was preparing to celebrate Thanksgiving. This year we asked her for an update, and she obliged.


With the holidays approaching I thought that I couldn’t be any happier. Over the past four years everything has been going great. My family and friends are happy and healthy. I made supervisor at my job. I bought a car. I’m more involved in my community. Most importantly I grew to become a better person. With everything going well, …

More In: Thanksgiving

A Very Cheech Marin Thanksgiving

Stoner, Boy Scout, Yogi, Art Collector—the Actor-Comedian Contains Multitudes

This week, California should give thanks for Cheech.

Richard Anthony Marin deserves our gratitude not just because his new autobiography, Cheech Is Not My Real Name … But Don’t Call Me …

What’s the Deal With Canned Cranberry Sauce?

The Pilgrims’ Plates Looked Nothing Like the Holiday Meal We Eat Today

No American holiday conjures up images and memories of food like Thanksgiving. Starting in preschool, most of us learned that Thanksgiving commemorates the moment in 1621 when Pilgrims sat down …

Your Holiday Angst Is America’s Oldest Tradition

The Puritans May Have Feasted on Thanksgiving, But Most British Colonists Didn’t Feel That Grateful

Do you have complicated feelings about Thanksgiving? Maybe your ancestors were among this continent’s indigenous peoples, and you have good reason to be rankled by thoughts of newly arrived English …

America’s First Rock Star

Plymouth Rock Has Been the Subject of History Lessons, Songs, and Speeches for 400 Years. Why Do We Love It?

“Plymouth Rock is a glacial erratic at rest in exotic terrane.” So begins John McPhee’s classic 1990 New Yorker article, the best short piece ever written about the great American …

Thanksgiving, the Infinity Mirror

During This Get-Together of Four Generations Speaking Three Languages, We All Take Turns Playing Caretaker and Taken-Care-Of

As Thanksgiving approaches, I think back to the first Thanksgiving I spent with my infant daughter three years ago, which was also the last one I spent with my grandmother. …