Article Club is 2 years old. I’m grateful.

Thank you for building this kind, thoughtful reading community.

Thank you, everyone, for another great month at Article Club.

Sunday’s discussion was another wonderful one. I appreciate author Nicholas Casey, facilitator Lauri, and participants Bonnie, Elise, Summer, Marcus, Susan, Peter, Jennifer, and Wes for making our conversation deep and thoughtful.

Like last year, we’re going to take December off for rest and reflection. I look forward to seeing you all in January, when we head into Year 3 of Article Club.

Until then, I want to thank you for making our reading community kind and generous.

Can you believe it’s been two years already? I still remember when this whole thing got started. In November 2019, after months of rumination, and plenty of false starts, I announced the launch of a “three-month experiment” in community reading. Here’s the original post and podcast episode:

Article Club
Introducing Article Club!
Listen now (3 min) | If you’ve been a loyal reader of The Highlighter (and especially if you’re a VIP member!), you know that I’ve been thinking of launching an article club. Good news: It’s here! (Well, sort of: It’s going to start in January.) Article Club is for people who want to…
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Since then, we’ve grown to hundreds of subscribers, read and annotated 22 articles, interviewed 21 authors (still not giving up on Caitlin Flanagan!), and held 22 discussions. We’ve welcomed bestselling authors and Pulitzer Prize-winning reporters and Kirkus Prize-winning writers. We’ve had readers join our discussions from Brazil and Nigeria and Brooklyn and Boston and Oakland and Vancouver and New Orleans and Chicago and Skokie and Cleveland and Salt Lake City – and more. We’ve marveled at how quickly strangers build meaningful connections through dialogue.

I’m very grateful. After all, I love to read, and I believe in the power of reading in community – especially now, when it’s much easier to click than it is to read, when it’s much easier to be distracted than to be focused, when it’s much easier to be mad at someone than to listen to them, to have a real conversation with them.

To all of you — thank you. Please feel free to reach out by sharing a comment or hitting reply. Most importantly, have a restful month and a joyful holiday. I look forward to seeing what’s in store for us in the new year!

Interview: Nicholas Casey, author of “My Father Vanished When I Was 7. The Mystery Made Me Who I Am.”

Mr. Casey shares his thoughts on his dad, melancholy, wanderlust, and genetics

  
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Hi there, Article Clubbers! This month, we’re reading, annotating, and discussing “My Father Vanished When I Was 7. The Mystery Made Me Who I Am,” by Nicholas Casey.

A few weeks ago, I got to interview Mr. Casey with fellow Article Clubber Lauri. It was a great conversation. He talked about how he came to write this piece and about how writing his own story was different from his regular work as a journalist. Mr. Casey also talked about his father, the concepts of melancholy and wanderlust, and the age-old nature vs. nurture question.

Most of all, I want to appreciate Mr. Casey for generously sharing his time and thoughtfulness with us. Also, to Lauri: Thank you for nominating this article for Readers’ Choice Month and for collaborating closely on this podcast episode.

After listening to the interview, feel free to add your thoughts in the comments. And if you’re participating in the discussion, see you this Sunday!

Leave a comment

Let’s annotate: “My Father Vanished When I Was 7. The Mystery Made Me Who I Am,” by Nicholas Casey

Plus: There’s still time to sign up for our discussion on November 21

Big thanks to all of you who have already signed up for our November 21 discussion of “My Father Vanished When I Was 7. The Mystery Made Me Who I Am,” by Nicholas Casey. It’s going to be a good one!

If you haven’t signed up yet, there’s still time (until Saturday, November 13). Here’s more info. Then click the big button.

Sign up for our discussion!

This week, we’re annotating this copy of the article together. It’s a great way to connect with other Article Clubbers and share your first thoughts about the piece, right inside the text. You can add to others’ comments or add your own.

Try it, you’ll like it!

I like annotating because it gets me deeper into the article so I understand it better. But my favorite part is seeing what you all write. In case you’re nervous about annotating: Remember, at Article Club, we don’t have to be fancy or smart. (We’re already fancy and smart!)

Coming up this month
  • This week: We’ll annotate the article with fellow Article Clubbers.

  • Next week: We’ll listen to Mr. Casey’s thoughts about the article.

  • Sunday, November 21: We’ll discuss the article with fellow Article Clubbers.

Are you new to Article Club? If so, welcome! We look forward to meeting you and having your voice in the conversation. Feel free to reach out with questions: mark@highlighter.cc.


Article Club is an experiment in community reading. We read, annotate, and discuss one outstanding article or book chapter a month. We invite the author to join our conversation, too. If you’re interested, sign up and check us out! Article Club is part of The Highlighter, a weekly newsletter featuring the best articles on race, education, and culture.

It’s November! Let’s read and discuss “My Father Vanished When I Was 7. The Mystery Made Me Who I Am.” by Nicholas Casey

Please sign up for our discussion on Sunday, November 21

  
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Welcome to November! I’m excited to announce that it’s our first-ever Readers’ Choice Month. This month, we’ll be reading and discussing “My Father Vanished When I Was 7. The Mystery Made Me Who I Am.” by Nicholas Casey. Thank you to everyone who nominated an article, and congratulations to Lauri for being the winner!

Originally published in The New York Times Magazine in June, the piece chronicles Mr. Casey’s long search for his father and explores issues of identity and connection. Where do we come from? What makes us the way we are?

Here’s an excerpt from the piece:

I spent much of my life imagining who I was — and then becoming that person — through vague clues about who my father was. Part of me still likes to believe we each determine who we are by the decisions we make and the lives we choose to live. But what if we don’t? Now I often wonder whether this long journey that has led me to so many corners of the world wasn’t because I was searching for him, but because I am him.

Nicholas Casey is the Madrid bureau chief at The New York Times, covering Spain, Portugal and Morocco. Over the last decade he was stationed in Colombia, Venezuela, Israel, Mexico, and the United States, where he covered the 2020 election. In 2016, he won the George Polk for his work in Venezuela. Mr. Casey’s reporting has also won the New York Press Club Award, the Clarion Award, and honorable mention from the Society of Publishers in Asia.

I hope you’ll join me and fellow Article Clubbers in discussing this article on Sunday, November 21, 2:00 - 3:30 pm PT! This event will be on Zoom and be limited to 24 participants.

Are you IN? I hope so. If so, here’s what to do:

  1. Sign up for the discussion.

  2. Leave a comment below. Say hi and share why you’re interested in this month’s article.

  3. Start reading the article. Here’s the original, and here’s a shared version we can annotate together.

Leave a comment

Coming up this month at Article Club
  • This week: We’ll sign up for the discussion and start reading the article.

  • Next week: We’ll annotate the article with fellow Article Clubbers.

  • The week of November 15: We’ll listen to an interview with Mr. Casey.

  • Sunday, November 21: We’ll discuss the article with fellow Article Clubbers.

Are you new to Article Club? If so, welcome! We look forward to meeting you and having your voice in the conversation. Feel free to reach out with questions: mark@highlighter.cc.


Article Club is a community of thoughtful people who read, annotate, and discuss one great article every month on race, education, or culture. Everyone is welcome. The author participates, too. Article Club is part of The Highlighter, a weekly newsletter featuring the best articles on race, education, and culture.

Let’s reflect: “The Key,” by Brian Broome

What was your favorite part of the discussion?

That was one of my favorite discussions we’ve ever had at Article Club! Thank you to Brian Broome; facilitators Telannia and Elise S; and participants Samuel, Sarai, Jamie, Peter, Bonnie, Lauri, Elise C, Molly, Toronzo, Sele, Daniel, Tim, and Summer.

Also, congratulations to Elise C for winning the raffle!

What was your favorite part? Don’t be shy, please share your thoughts and celebrations.

Leave a comment

For me, what made yesterday special was…

  • the power of an outstanding piece of writing

  • the thoughtful questions and contributions of participants

  • the connection we’ve built as a reading community

  • the clarity and hilarity of Mr. Broome himself

Let’s all root for Mr. Broome to win the Kirkus Prize this Thursday. And I urge you to buy Punch Me Up to the Gods and to read “79” if you haven’t done so already.

I’ll see you next week when I reveal November’s article, which we will discuss on Sunday, Nov. 21, 2:00 - 3:30 pm PT. It’s another great one. Hope you’re there!

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