Alina Simone

Contributor to PRI's The World

I actually started my career as an indie-rock singer and spent most of my time in far-flung bars and basements from Olympia, Washington to Arkhangelsk, Russia, where I was psyched to learn there are rock clubs even in the Arctic Circle. Perhaps it was these years spent in distant hidey-holes singing to four forlorn Swedes that keeps me inspired, as a writer, to seek out stories that are unusual, arcane and perhaps interesting only to me.

In addition to reporting for PRI's The World, I am the author of the essay collection, You Must Go and Win, and the novel, Note to Self (both published by Faber). My writing has also appeared in The New York Times, New York Times Magazine and The Wall Street Journal, among other places. 

Recent Stories


At this school in upstate New York, students are free to speak Mohawk

For more than 100 years, the governments of both the United States and Canada forcibly assimilated generations of Native people by taking their children and sending them off to English-only boarding schools — a process the pushed the majority of indigenous languages to the brink of extinction. More than 35 years ago, a small Mohawk tribe in New York decided to fight back — by creating a school of its own.