In Mexico, a New Vocabulary for Grief and Justice

Most Murders in the Country Go Uninvestigated. Activists and Writers Are Coming Together to Demand Accountability

“Almost everyone lost someone during the war,” writes Cristina Rivera Garza in The Restless Dead: Necrowriting and Disappropriation.  

In 2006, Mexican president Felipe Calderón initiated the country’s War on Drugs, which she describes as “a military crackdown on the brutal narcotrafficking gangs that had presumably maintained pacts of stability with previous regimes.” Its toll is estimated to be 360,000 homicides and more than 60,000 disappeared. Rivera Garza refers to it not as the drug war but the guerra calderonista—the Calderón war.

Violence has changed not …

Three Generations, Two Immigrations

A Salvadoran American-Turned-Israeli Reflects on Moving Between Cultures and Finding Home, Again and Again

The first time I immigrated, 34 years ago, I was a toddler brought to the United States by my parents from our native El Salvador. A year ago, I immigrated …

What We Lose When We ‘Cancel’ Russian | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

What We Lose When We ‘Cancel’ Russian

After the Ukraine Invasion, Enrollment in the Language Hit Historic Lows. But Turning Away Isolates the Entire Post-Soviet World

Feeling decisive one morning during my sophomore year of college, I picked my major: Russian. I had been studying the language and was excited for the opportunity to read literature, …

tktk | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Flowering Fish

Zhiyu You is an illustrator and visual artist born in China and based in New York. Combining painting techniques and digital drawing, You’s artistic vocabulary is developed from her Chinese …

Where I Go: The Best Basketball Court in Lisbon

At Campo dos Mártires da Pátria, There’s Only One Shared Language, and Everyone Is Welcome

When I arrived in Lisbon in late 2016, I was in the best basketball shape of my life. I had just finished a master’s degree in Scotland, where I had …

A still from Lupin

Hello (Bonjour) From Your Friendly TV Translator

I Hope You Enjoy My Subtitles and Dubs—Then Forget I Exist

If you don’t notice my work, it means I’m doing my job properly.

I’m an audiovisual translator, which means that I—and others like me—help you understand the languages spoken on screen: …