What are you reading besides The Atlantic?
July 10, 2014 9:17 AM   Subscribe

A long time ago, Time Magazine used to provide moderately thoughtful, longer form articles about current events and culture. For the past few decades, that niche has been filled for me by a mix of Harper's, The Atlantic, and The Economist. None of these are perfect, but they provide a nice mix of interesting content on a monthly basis. What else is out there that you'd recommend? It doesn't need to be print, online would work as well.
posted by leotrotsky to Writing & Language (36 answers total) 140 users marked this as a favorite
I love Texas Monthly. You may not live in Texas (I don't anymore), but the indepth articles are wonderful.
posted by tafetta, darling! at 9:19 AM on July 10, 2014 [6 favorites]

Best answer: The New Yorker seems like a pretty clear peer of the three magazines you mentioned.
posted by Perplexity at 9:20 AM on July 10, 2014 [30 favorites]

Definitely the New Yorker.
posted by griphus at 9:20 AM on July 10, 2014 [1 favorite]

Pacific Standard &
The New Inquiry
also The Point

are 3 I've been reading quite a bit lately.
posted by Chrischris at 9:21 AM on July 10, 2014

Best answer: Also Longform and Longreads are good aggregators of this type of thing.
posted by Perplexity at 9:21 AM on July 10, 2014 [10 favorites]

posted by rabidsegue at 9:21 AM on July 10, 2014 [5 favorites]

New Yorker for sure. And tho it's not the same thing, I see links on the Metafilter main site to a lot of thoughtful content.
posted by LonnieK at 9:24 AM on July 10, 2014

Definitely LongReads as suggested above.

I find their website a little weird to navigate, so I'd suggest following their twitter account, as they post their "Best of" about every 3-5 days.
posted by kuanes at 9:26 AM on July 10, 2014

It leans towards sports but also covers popular culture: Grantland
posted by TedW at 9:32 AM on July 10, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: New York Review of Books have perfected the genre I like to call "The Book Review That is Really About Something Else", i.e. thinly-veiled excuses for a much wider range of smart commentary on important issues of the day. It has some of the best topical and geographical coverage between two covers that I know of, and bonus, you get to find out about lots of interesting non-fiction books. It's really a bargain for $89 a year, for access to their enormous and rich archive of writing, if nothing else. Their blog's not bad too.

I also love Lapham's Quarterly: four beautiful periodicals a year, each of which curates extracts of beautiful writing from across history (yes, 4000+ years of it) on big evocative themes - Youth, Revolution, The Sea, Death, etc. and somehow manages, through genius editorialization, to be obliquely thought-provoking on contemporary questions (eg. the Revolutions issue). It's really worth getting in print.

I could read just those two things and be pretty much as keyed up on the world as I want to be.
posted by idlethink at 9:55 AM on July 10, 2014 [14 favorites]

I find good stuff at the Virginia Quarterly Review.
posted by megancita at 10:01 AM on July 10, 2014 [1 favorite]

I've read a lot of awesome articles in Vanity Fair. Example.

Also the Harvard Business Review continually fascinates me.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 10:04 AM on July 10, 2014

This site has been around for years, but I still check out Arts And letters Daily every few days; the site often features substantive articles from a variety of sources, and they are often summarized by a witty lead-in, much like many of the posts here!
posted by Agave at 10:06 AM on July 10, 2014 [4 favorites]

I am from the Midwest and have been to Texas a total of once, but I also love Texas Monthly! Weirdly good.

I second Grantland as well, for being great for pop culture fun and also thoughtful, nonhostile sports reporting.
posted by stoneandstar at 10:09 AM on July 10, 2014

Ditto on the NYRB.
posted by fivesavagepalms at 10:12 AM on July 10, 2014

The Baffler. They've got a robust blog in addition to their subscription publications, so you can get a good idea of what they're on about!
posted by metarkest at 10:12 AM on July 10, 2014 [1 favorite]

I always thought of Granta as an old-fashioned literary magazine (i.e. short fiction and poetry and what more could you want?), but lately I've been seeing some really good vaguely-New Yorker-style nonfiction there. Or maybe they were printing that stuff all along and I wasn't paying attention? Anyway, it's good.
posted by nebulawindphone at 10:15 AM on July 10, 2014

Just here nthing the New Yorker. First year subscription should be available for $25 if you hunt around the Internet or just call them. They may have cut that deal down to six months though.
posted by kensington314 at 10:34 AM on July 10, 2014

If you like the Economist you might like Foreign Affairs.

Seconding Arts & Letters Daily, Lapham's Quarterly & Granta - their theme issues are fascinating.

The website Marginal Revolution, which calls itself an economics blog (it's partially run by Tyler Cowen) is much more than that and fits the niche you describe.

Also Ars Technica if you like Arts & Letters Daily.

And really, if you don't have it already, a print subscription to the Sunday New York Times - you read much more than you might online and you get the magazines - lovely to curl up with.
posted by barchan at 10:35 AM on July 10, 2014

I love the Atlantic, but one I can steer you away from is Washington Monthly. They occasionally have some good long form stuff, but I subscribed and most of it is short loony left opinion pieces (and they publish six times a year, so it's really bimonthly). The Internet is really great for getting the occasional piece out of, say, Rolling Stone or New York Magazine (not to be confused with the New Yorker) even if you're not interested in the bulk of the content.

You might try Mother Jones, which is pretty left leaning but still has some good reporting.
posted by wnissen at 10:42 AM on July 10, 2014

Great suggestions. If you are interested in foreign stuff, I would recommend Foreign Policy over Foreign Affairs -- more lively, less pontificating.

P.S. We get Vanity Fair, but my Lord, you have to put up with a lot of crap, like Now It Can Be Revealed How Pickles Auchincloss Had An affair With a Lesser Kenned While at St. James, breathlessly rendered by Pickles' daughter, in close collaboration with file photos, a ghostwriter, and Pickles' daughter's trust fund.
posted by Clyde Mnestra at 10:49 AM on July 10, 2014 [2 favorites]

I got the Economist for awhile, but as a weekly (mostly) current events magazine, it piled up on me and was irrelavent when I got back to it 3 or 4 weeks later. The New Yorker is good even months later.

I also read the vast majority of Outside every month, despite not being remotely fit or active. The stories are fantastic.
posted by the christopher hundreds at 11:21 AM on July 10, 2014

I take the Times Literary Supplement. A somewhat more scholarly and European approach than the New York Review of Books.

It's the only periodical I'm subscribed to at present.

Caveat: a higher brow.
posted by bertran at 1:17 PM on July 10, 2014

Another vote for the New Yorker. I used to subscribe to everything -- it's the lone survivor.
posted by thursdaystoo at 1:21 PM on July 10, 2014 [1 favorite]

The Walrus is a good Canadian counterpart to the Atlantic.
posted by NorthernAutumn at 1:37 PM on July 10, 2014 [1 favorite]

Seconding the London Review of Books, which I think is even better than the NYRB.
posted by languagehat at 3:07 PM on July 10, 2014

I appreciate the Los Angeles Review of Books. It's just a few years old and they have expanded from book reviews into art, film, music, political opinion, current issues, and culture. I have read many articles that I normally wouldn't just because the writing is excellent.
posted by Lil Bit of Pepper at 3:23 PM on July 10, 2014 [2 favorites]

Al Jazeera - America has great articles.
posted by CtrlAltD at 4:18 PM on July 10, 2014

Modern Farmer has had some really interesting articles lately. I tend to find them via Longform or Longreads.
posted by Coffeemate at 9:52 AM on July 11, 2014

The Browser and edge.org
posted by sektah at 9:59 AM on July 11, 2014

The Magazine, maybe?
posted by RedOrGreen at 2:51 PM on July 11, 2014

I've found a lot of good articles from Oxford American via Longreads of late.
posted by SisterHavana at 10:58 PM on July 11, 2014 [1 favorite]

I've been on a VentureBeat binge lately. It's a quick way to discover all the crazy new technologies that are due to surface in a few years' time.
posted by TaylorHannigan at 12:03 AM on July 14, 2014

The Believer.
posted by theperfectcrime at 12:29 AM on July 14, 2014

For interesting long-form articles, I highly recommend The Feature ("A hand-picked selection of the finest articles and essays saved with Instapaper").
posted by Dansaman at 3:25 PM on July 14, 2014

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