Editor's picks of 2021 - feature stories


When I started reviewing the features we published in 2021, I found myself drawn to the stories that documented moments in our year from a completely different perspective. On the surface, Instagram Perfect is about the trends we have been reading about all year—the dangerous influence of social media on young women and the increased risk created by the dynamics of the pandemic, as children and teens spend more and more unsupervised time online. But Mari Sahakyan found a new way to bring home the impact of the statistics and give a face to the trend.

Azerbaijan’s displaced face prejudices, two wars later takes the heartbreaking story of conflict and displacement in a new direction by looking at how communities treat those affected by war when they live next door. Through careful journalism and thoughtful interviews, Heydar Isayev brought new immediacy to a story we, as a society, have become indifferent to.

And Act 2.0, Elene Pasuri’s insightful study of the complicated performance politicians, media and the public participate in. As an observer of Georgian politics for two decades, I thought I had a good handle on the dynamics that influence the events. Her analysis and prose made me think about the breaking news I watch unfolding in a new way.

- Molly Corso Editor of Chai Khana

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