Support Aeon

‘I learn more about how to think about the world from Aeon than probably any other publication I regularly read.’

Elizabeth B, USA, Friend of Aeon

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.
But we can’t do it without you.

Give now

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

Give now

Field song

6 minutes

‘Life is to plow.’ A reflection on struggle, success and the impermanence of both

‘Just like the bad things, the beautiful things are temporary too.’

Roberto Olivera was raised in poverty in southern California, where he worked the tomato fields alongside his mother and abusive stepfather, migrant workers from Mexico. Now in his 60s, financially successful and with a family of his own, Olivera has grown to understand the meaning behind his mother’s frequent refrain: ‘La vida es sufrir’ (‘Life is suffering’). With an understated melancholy, Field Song pairs Olivera’s poignant reflections with views of southern California’s agricultural landscapes, presenting hardship as both temporary and timeless.

Director: Brad Bischoff

Producer: Alex Hidalgo

Director of Photography: Casey Bohrnell

Get Aeon straight
to your inbox
Join our newsletter
Aeon is not-for-profit
and free for everyone
Make a donation
Essay/
Neuroscience
The theory of mind myth

Even experts can’t predict violence or suicide. Surely we’re kidding ourselves that we can see inside the minds of others

Robert Burton

Essay/
Social Psychology
In extremis

As Hannah Arendt argued, there is one common thread which connects individuals drawn to all kinds of extremist ideologies

Nabeelah Jaffer