Long Reads Of The Week: Steinbeck, ISIS And The World's Biggest Website

Five great pieces you may have missed from around the web

1 | A partisan look inside the biggest website in the world. Writing for Gawker former DailyMail.com employee James King claims ‘the Mail's editorial model depends on little more than dishonesty, theft of copyrighted material, and sensationalism so absurd that it crosses into fabrication.’ 

2 | The history of America’s first ever suicide bomb in 1891 includes a severed head, a Wall Street tycoon and a clerk allegedly used as a human shield. In an original piece for longreads.com Jack El-Hai explores how the incident spawned one of the longest running civil lawsuits in U.S history. 

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3 | Writing for The Atlantic, Graeme Wood offers a comprehensive analysis of Islamic State, arguing that it is in fact a religious group bringing medieval tradition into the present day, with the belief it is the agent of apocalypse. 


4 | The Guardian’s roving foreign correspondent Jonathan Steele explores how a refuge camp near the center of Damascus became little more than a prison for 150,000 Palestinian residents who survive on meagre supplies, with little hope of escape.


5 | Timely advice for anyone struggling with a creative work: Maria Popova writes for Brain Pickings on how John Steinbeck’s commitment to keeping a diary helped craft one of literature’s all-time classic novels, Grapes Of Wrath.