Paradise’s Charred Remains

A Photographer and a Writer Document Five Generations of Family Mementos After the 2019 Camp Fire

On November 8, 2018, endless images streamed from the Camp Fire in my hometown of Paradise, California. A single day generated thousands of pictures that filled the world with a new vision of calamity. One-sentence captions ran under photos of engulfed schools, destroyed businesses, and miles of scorched cars scattered across ruined roadways—waiting their turns to never get out.

This is how grief reads. Tightly packed, difficult descriptions giving way to emptiness.

The first image of Paradise that I saw that morning was a photo that was posted on a website. Taken …

Welcome to the Utopian States of America

Experimenting With More Perfect Unions Is Part of Our National Character

No place on the globe has been more crowded with utopian longing and utopian experimentation than the United States in the middle of the 19th century. Countless people on …