A Letter From Beirut, Where the Taxis Have Resumed Honking

Amid Lebanon’s Economic Collapse, Fear of the Virus Briefly Amended the Social Contract

The eeriest thing about Beirut’s streets during the first weeks of the quarantine—the lull between two storms, before the protesters returned to the streets and started throwing Molotov cocktails at the banks—was the absence of taxi horns.

Those horns, and the relentless sensory assault they constitute, are among the features that define my experience of this city that has somehow become home. As a Beirut resident for three years before the quarantine, I found that every time I returned to the Lebanese capital after a visit elsewhere it would take me …

A Letter From Quezon City, Where the Stars Have Come Back | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

A Letter From Quezon City, Where the Stars Have Come Back

In the Philippines, COVID-19 Has Made the Air Cleaner—And Revealed the Nation’s Deeper Challenges

It’s amazing how much more you’re able to see when you can’t go wherever you want.

We’re now more than six weeks into the “enhanced community quarantine” for Luzon. Just as …

A Letter From Mumbai, Where Everyday Questions Carry New Weight | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

A Letter From Mumbai, Where Everyday Questions Carry New Weight

For Muslims in India, Lockdowns May Unleash Something More Dangerous and Discriminatory Than a Virus

On local trains, I used to overhear phone conversations. Fights, flirtations, and often the question: Khana khaya? Did you eat?

Mentally, I’d roll my eyes. If someone asked me, my …

Quarantine Me at Asilomar! | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Quarantine Me at Asilomar!

This Monterey County State Park Is a Rare Spot for Californians to Find Refuge and Connection 

Quarantine me as long as you like. Just make sure you quarantine me at Asilomar.

For this peculiar time, there may be no more desirable California place than that small strip …