Şafak Pavey Wins US International Women of Courage Award

I’ve written about my dear friend and now member of Turkey’s parliament Şafak Pavey before (here is her story) . On Thursday, she received the US State Department 2012 International Women of Courage Award along with nine other women at the US State Department. (There is a video below of Şafak receiving her award; click here for a video […]

The Secret Life of Cancer

My startling interview with a well-known molecular biologist about what cancer is, really. Click here for the full interview. An excerpt: I’m a faithful reader of the New York Times Science Section, cover to cover, because I want to know about things, not be caught flatfooted. Somehow it seems necessary for survival to know about quarks […]

The Legend of Marcus Aurelius

Some reflections on memory and family legend. Click here.

Citizen Pavey

At precisely 9:03 am on Friday, May 24, 1996, the attractive blonde woman on track thirteen at the Zurich station slipped into the gap between the platform and the moving train…. Read about CHP’s newly elected Member of Parliament, Şafak Pavey, the amazing trajectory of her life, and her plans for Turkey. Click here.

Letter from Be’er Sheva

Some reflections on my week in Israel. Click here.

Deep Vanilla

My column this month for 3QuarksDaily is about an ice cream man (click here): Gus Rancatori is a Renaissance man who owns an ice cream parlor. Cambridge-based Toscanini’s is a hangout where you’re as likely to run into a Nobel Laureate in chemistry and a molecular foodie as a furniture maker or novelist. One day I […]

What Remains

My new monthly essay for 3QuarksDaily, “What Remains”, has been published. You can find it here. It’s about my grandmother in Germany, WWII, my emigration, time and memory.

Can Egypt be Turkey?

Turkey has been bandied about this past week as a model to be emulated by the new nations being born like small supernovas across the Middle East. Turkey was founded by a powerful military that doesn’t flinch from coups, but has also had a functioning and fair, if flawed, electoral democracy since 1950. The country […]

Know Your Own Bone

For my Monday essay in 3QuarksDaily, click here. It’s a bit of a new year’s rant. Here’s how it starts: December 31, 2010 — Today on the cusp of renewal, I read a singularly deflating article in The New York Times by Susan Jacoby who, on this sunny final day of the new year, took the […]

A New Quark: Parsing Tariq Ramadan

I’ve become a monthly Monday columnist on 3QuarksDaily. Here is my first essay, on Tariq Ramadan’s visit to Boston University: The day Tariq Ramadan came to the university to speak, I had just been teaching my social anthropology class about the contradictions between the ethical and pragmatic aspects of Islam. How can people claim Islam […]