Latest News: Posts Tagged ‘hell world’

“O’Neil opens up a space to redirect the energies of anger and guilt away from ourselves and toward the systems of oppression.” — WELCOME TO HELL WORLD reviewed by Full Stop

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2020

Welcome to Hell World – Luke O’Neil

The result, if you really dig down to the very core of that what-the-fuck moment that happens again and again throughout the book, is not a sense of morbid delight or nihilistic surrender but rather a fragile, translucent shard of hope. It’s small and it’s tender and I certainly wouldn’t go digging around too hard just yet in the hope of holding it in your hands, but it’s there all the same. And at no time is this pathetic little scrap more apparent than in that brief moment when O’Neil lays out a story about baby jails or the Sackler family or fucking Amazon and it hits you, yes, this whole thing is unbelievable. You’re not weak or subpar or unfit for the game, it is being played under conditions objectively terrible and cruel. Moreover, the rules are designed to hide the fact, to pathologize the suffering as a failure of the individual. In acknowledging this, O’Neil opens up a space to redirect the energies of anger and guilt away from ourselves and toward the systems of oppression. Which is to say, O’Neil might have no answers here, but at least he’s figuring out what, and more importantly who, to ask.

Read the full review here.

“A lot of times you have to censor yourself if you’re writing for a big outlet, you can’t literally just say ‘This is fucking terrible. These people are vampire ghouls and they deserve to die,’ you know?”—Luke O’Neil, author of WELCOME TO HELL WORLD, interviewed by The Alternative

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2020

Interview: Luke O’Neil Author of ‘Hell World’

“Luke O’Neil is one of my favorite writers and journalists. I guess that’s not a mainstream pick because he hasn’t written any famous novels or won any big journalism awards (yet), but he has gotten hate from the MAGA chuds because he wrote that people should piss in Republicans’ food in a major city’s newspaper, so I think that’s equivalent as far as I’m concerned.

Luke is a longtime writer about issues in social justice, criminal justice, financial inequality, and American war crimes. Occasionally his articles are featured in big outlets like (insert corporation #1) and (insert corporation #2), but more recently he has been writing a weekly newsletter called Welcome to Hell World which presents stories and research about the many different issues and injustices that make living in America in the 2020’s such a hellscape, and delivering it direct to his readers himself. Just a few months ago, he compiled the best of the first batch of newsletters into a truly touching and emotional read of a book, which is also hilarious in the dark humor sort of way that the title, Welcome To Hell World, illustrates.”

Read the full interview here.

“Luke O’Neil’s World Is Hell, and He’s Sharing It with Us”—an interview with Luke O’Neil, author of Welcome to Hell World, in Boston Magazine

Friday, August 30th, 2019

An interview with Luke O’Neil in Boston Magazine

I worry about Luke O’Neil sometimes. Possibly more than any of the writers covering the million horrible things in the world right now—innocent children who become casualties of war, desperate people resorting to GoFundMe campaigns to pay for healthcare—he has a way of internalizing the sorrows of the news cycle, presenting its most troubling themes alongside his own struggles and weaving it all into a grand narrative about decay and despair. Reading his popular, semi-weekly newsletter Hell World is a lot like staring deep into O’Neil’s soul, and it’s often a pretty dark place.

Read the full interview here.

“Sin-eaters: journalists devour the sins of others but to what end?” —an excerpt from Luke O’Neil’s WELCOME TO HELL WORLD published in The Guardian

Thursday, August 29th, 2019

Sin-eaters: journalists devour the sins of others but to what end?

In 2010, a fundraiser was held to repair the grave of a man named Richard Munslow. In the century since Munslow had been buried in the town of Ratlinghope, about an hour outside of Birmingham, the stone that marked his life had fallen into disrepair.

After a few months, the £1,000 needed to hire a local stonemason was raised and the work was done. “This grave at Ratlinghope is now in an excellent state of repair,” the Reverend Norman Morris, the town’s vicar, told the BBC at the time. “But I have no desire to reinstate the ritual that went with it.”

The ritual in question was known as sin-eating, the art of which Munslow is believed to have been the last practitioner. In the eighteenth and nineteenth century in the surrounding area and up through Scotland and Wales, sin-eaters would have been a familiar sight if not one exactly sanctioned by the church. Having a monopoly on the redemption of souls, they would have seen such a practice as muscling in on their corner.

Read the full excerpt here.

“O’Neil speaks the way he writes, wired into a permanent state of journalist-brain.”—from a profile of Luke O’Neil, author of Welcome to Hell World in WBUR

Friday, August 2nd, 2019

Profile of WELCOME TO HELL WORLD author Luke O’Neil in WBUR

Posted up at the bar in the corner of The Sinclair, poking at an ice cube in a drained lowball glass, Luke O’Neil admits he’s a bit out of his element. “Just make sure you know that I know that this all sounds really douchey to be talking about yourself. I haven’t done this enough times that I’m comfortable with it.”

He’s used to being on the other side of the interview, asking the questions. For the past 15 years, he’s worked as a journalist, first writing about music, cocktails and culture for Boston’s alt-weeklies before moving on to outlets like Esquire, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian and more. The Sinclair is his typical scene; he DJs the bar’s monthly emo night, a local hit.

Read the full profile here.

“I saw a story where scientists said the pitch at which whales near the Antarctic sing has been getting progressively lower over the past couple decades. Blue whales sometimes sing at a pitch so low that it’s beyond the grasp of human ears which sounds magical doesn’t it that there are massive creatures communicating in a manner that we would never be able to hear if we didn’t amplify it with technology .”—Luke O’Neil, author of Welcome to Hell World in Longreads

Tuesday, July 30th, 2019

An extract from WELCOME TO HELL WORLD in Longreads

We build on top of ourselves burying the past I thought. We live on top of the dead I thought while staring down into the ruins there snapping photos of the ancient culture’s bones on my phone so I could remember them some day in the future. Eventually you accumulate too many memories on your phone so you have to decide which ones to delete. You have to go through and be like do I absolutely need to remember this hamburger?

The past is very easy for me to imagine because it has already happened. Either I was there for it or someone else was there for it and they wrote it down and so now we know. The present is also easy to imagine because well I don’t think I need to explain that one. I have never been very good about thinking about the future though and I don’t think any of us are. We make plans sure and if you were to ask us what we might be doing a year from now or five years from now or twenty years from now we could probably spackle together a plausible approximation of what it might look like but the future isn’t real because no one has written it down for us yet.

I saw a story where scientists said the pitch at which whales near the Antarctic sing has been getting progressively lower over the past couple decades. Blue whales sometimes sing at a pitch so low that it’s beyond the grasp of human ears which sounds magical doesn’t it that there are massive creatures communicating in a manner that we would never be able to hear if we didn’t amplify it with technology. Maybe they just don’t want us eavesdropping. Maybe they’re talking about us behind our backs.

Read the full extract here.