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Luke Burgis

In the isolation of the pandemic, our need for social media has been especially acute. It helps us to make sense of who we are. We didn’t know what to desire. So we turned to other people, on our phones, to tell us:

Watch Tiger King, drink negronis, adopt dogs…


The Japansese tradition of omakase is now one of my favorite dining experiences. My wife introduced me to it in New York City just a few years ago — it was one of those moments when she looks at me like, “Oh you poor thing, I sometimes forget you didn’t…


The 2020 film “The Social Dilemma”, a brainchild of the Center for Humane Technology, was a commercial success during the darkest days of the pandemic. It highlighted some of the disturbing effects of social media on our lives and relationships. …


How do hardened desires change or undergo a process of transformation, especially when those desires are harmful or limiting?

In this article, I’m sharing an excerpted transcript of my interview with Dr. Roland Griffiths, Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Neurosciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine…


I am the author of the book Wanting: The Power of Mimetic Desire in Everyday Life. …


“More than ever, I am convinced that history has meaning — and that its meaning is terrifying,” wrote René Girard.

The apocalyptic social theorist René Girard, whose work centered around the dark forces of human desire, saw that history was trending toward increased mimetic, or imitative, conflict. …


Photo by Yichuan Cao/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The criminal trial of Elizabeth Holmes, the founder of the blood-testing startup Theranos, began last week. …


September 11, 2001, was a Tuesday. In 2021, it was a Saturday.

It is the opposite of what Ernest Hemingway called a Moveable Feast — it is a kind of Fixed Famine, which we remember on the same date each calendar year regardless of the day of the week it…


I first encountered Chloé Simone Valdary‘s work while I was in the throes of writing Wanting. It was the summer of 2020. I was concerned that race issues in America were turning into a full-blown mimetic crisis, replete with scapegoats.

I reached out to her late last year after exploring…


Photo: Paul Chinn/The Chronicle

“We make men without chests and expect from them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honor and are shocked to find traitors in our midst.’“ — C.S. Lewis

The Great Divorce

The infamous “Fire Walks” of the Not-Your-Guru Tony Robbins — at which participants at self-help seminars attempt to walk over burning hot…

Luke Burgis

Author of “WANTING: The Power of Mimetic Desire in Everyday Life.” Find more at read.lukeburgis.com

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