Author Archives: Joel D. Hirst

About Joel D. Hirst

Joel D. Hirst is a novelist and a playwright. His most recently released work is "Dreams of the Defeated: A Play in Two Acts" about a political prisoner in a dystopian regime. His novels include "I, Charles, From the Camps" about the life of a young man in the African camps and "Lords of Misrule" about the making and unmaking of a jihadist in the Sahara. "The Lieutenant of San Porfirio" and its sequel "The Burning of San Porfirio" are about the rise and fall of socialist Venezuela (with magic).

The New America?

“Go see the new America,” I was advised by a not-altogether-well-meaning friend. “See how America has changed.” “America has changed a lot in the last nine years,” said another friend, “and not all for the better.” And yet again, “America … Continue reading

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It Came From a Lab…

I’m not really accustomed to quick posts on current events, my writing being focused mostly on culture and politics and art and travel – civilizational writings meant to inspire wonder. However Vanity Fair just published the most extraordinary piece of … Continue reading

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Night – by Elie Wiesel

“No, not in the twentieth century,” was the flippant answer of the Jews of Sighet in Transylvania when told of the ongoing holocaust by the Nazi German Government. “Not in the 20th century.” The century when I was born. Three … Continue reading

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The Maze by Albert Likhanov

This was a curious novel, by one of the Soviet Union’s most famous children’s writers. It is simple, as it is written from the POV of a young boy struggling through pretty normal problems in life unfortunately. Problems in the … Continue reading

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My Last Night in Yerevan

The quiet hum of Ashtarak highway reverberates in the background; the wind rustles the trees, new leaves – excited to show them off after a long cold winter. The city, away down into the valley buzzes with life: restaurants and … Continue reading

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War, Pandemic, and Depression

It was at the very beginning of my days of adulthood – grad school to be precise – when nineteen terrorists smashed two planes into the sides of two sky-scrapers. I was sitting in the student union at university in … Continue reading

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The Commission On Unalienable Rights

One of the most extraordinary things that came out of the 45th President’s Department of State was the Commission on Unalienable Rights (and its subsequent report – find it here). The commission was set up in 2019 and the final … Continue reading

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On Oppression

Last night I was reading the Bible to my little boy – we are now in the life of Jesus – the story about when the Pharisees tried to trick him by asking him whether a good Jew should pay … Continue reading

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Seek Out The Glorious

It has been a rough year, to say the least. Disease and ‘isolation’, those “premodern idea(s) of quarantines, closures, and measured lockdowns.” A way of thinking that is “not just premodern; (instead) turning the logic of modern medicine on its … Continue reading

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The First Man

I’ve never been a fan of Albert Camus; I didn’t really understand what all the fuss was about. I found Plague and Stranger interesting, but not particularly noteworthy. I am changing that impression for the record here. I just finished … Continue reading

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