Sign up for The Critics, a Newsletter Surveying the Week in Culture

No writing thrills like a sharp piece of criticism. It can feel like a high-wire act: Will the critic pull it off? In learning what and how they think, we find ourselves thinking alongside them. Great criticism is a world-expander, an invigorator, a perpetual-motion machine — a reminder that finding out how other people see a thing is sometimes even more exciting than the thing itself. It makes you mad. It makes you laugh. When the culture is a downer, criticism’s an upper.

As a culture features editor at New York, I’m well aware that our roster of critics is a rarity these days. Our critics cover everything from TV to New York restaurants, architecture to fashion, and that’s been the case since 1968. Now as every movie or book begins its life cycle online — praised, trashed, defended — our critics cut through, going beyond good and bad to help us get a grip on the moment.

In our newsletter The Critics, I’ll be your guide to all the reviews and critical essays we publish across our sites every week. I’ll also be in conversation with our critics — talking about their work and taking on the arguments that shape how we see culture now. It’s the kind of high-low brilliant-despicable digest of ideas that only New York could provide.

Everyone’s a critic, but not every newsletter’s The Critics. Sign up below.

—Madeline Leung Coleman, culture features editor, New York