Tracking cultural
shifts around the globe.

We founded Peeps, a magazine featuring original works of investigative journalism and engaging analysis into contemporary human affairs.

Peeps Magazine Issue 01 / 148 pages

The Modern Protagonist
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Peeps Magazine Issue 02 / 148 pages

Crossing Thresholds
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Peeps Issue 02 / Practice
Written by Katrina Johnston-Zimmerman
Photography from PentaCityGroup

Syntax in the City

Think about the day-to-day experience of people moving around the globe or simply wandering around in their own city. Think about a tourist, but also think about a newcomer or a local. Cities are environments unlike any other in our world—ecosystems of places and parts that we humans create for ourselves to live in. This is a story about wayfinding—so much more than just signs and maps. It’s really about the democratic use of public space.

Peeps Issue 02 / Feature
Written by Mathilde Caro
Photography by Boris Svartzman

Not Wanted on the Rue Saint-Denis

It’s a February evening and a meeting is being held at the town hall of the 2nd arrondissement in Paris. A resident stands to speak. “We thought gentrification was under way,” she says, “and that it would eliminate prostitution. Can we expect to see an end to prostitution in this neighbourhood?” The debate was launched. Read this insightful investigation by anthropologist Mathillde Caro into contrasting values in a gentrifying Paris neighbourhood.

Peeps Issue 02 / Practice
Interviewed by Aliah EL-houni & Anya-Milana Sulaver
Illustration by Stephanie Hofmann; Photography by Nation Wong

Research Mixology

An interview with Airbnb’s Director of Research, Judd Antin. In the ten months he has been at Airbnb, Judd Antin has made a lot of things happen. He has put together a team that includes everyone from customer experience specialists, to ethnographers, to survey scientists. This mixture of methods and perspectives has yielded practical results and actionable strategies that have kept Airbnb in touch with the needs and desires of its hosts and guests.

Peeps Issue 02 / Feature
Written by Barbara Heer
Photography by Mark Lewis

Being Together with Strangers

Post-apartheid Johannesburg is often misunderstood as a city lacking connections across divided spaces and lifeworlds. If we pay close attention to urban everyday life, though, we can see that people living in the city are engaged in constant creation and appropriation of social spaces. Some of these spaces serve for social enclosure, but others also for social encounters. An investigative story from social anthropologist Barbara Heer.

Peeps Issue 02 / The Lens
Photography by Vittoria Zupicich

Between People and Architecture

Victor Buchli wrote in An Anthropology of Architecture, “the relationship between the body and build form is difficult to disentangle; it is impossible to clearly say where the body ends and built form begins.” In this photo essay by Vittoria Zupicich featuring beautiful geometric compositions of space and scale, the international photographer examines the relationship between architecture and the people who unconsciously affect it.

Peeps Issue 02 / Mini Feature
Written by Jen Barr
Photography by Meryl Schenker

On the Origins of the Bathroom Lineup

”The second act of the play is wrapping up; intermission is coming. I brace myself. The house lights brighten, and I am off, weaving around sauntering fellow theater-goers, past the lobby, and screeching to a halt at the end of the women’s restroom line.” In her fascinating essay for Peeps magazine, anthropologist Jen Barr explains some deep-seated issues behind the frequent long lines at women’s restrooms.

Peeps Issue 01 / Practice
Written by Gavin Johnston
Illustration by Tony Rodriguez

Beyond the Disease

Three days a week, David wakes up, showers, dresses, and plunges a needle into a vein. He’s been doing this since he was a child. He does this three days a week, for fifteen minutes, because if he doesn’t, a fall or scrape can land him in the hospital. This needle is a reality he’s lived with all 22 years of his life and one he will carry with him until his final days. Anthropologist Gavin Johnston shares the story of a research he conducted for a U.S. pharmaceutical company.

Peeps Issue 01 / Feature
Written by Graham Candy
Photography by Yuyang Liu

Winning and Losing in Modern China

I first met Hu in 2009. A computer programmer by trade, Hu was earning a middle-class salary by Chinese standards. He was single and rented a room in downtown Hangzhou, a major urban city along the coast of China. Altogether he appeared to have a vibrant social and family life, happily living the modern Chinese dream. By late 2012, he had a revelation of a different sort. Hu proudly told me that he had finally figured it out. In a nation of winners, he was a loser.

Peeps Issue 02 / Practice
Interviewed by Aliah EL-houni
Photography by Meryl Schenker

The Human Element at Microsoft

An interview with Microsoft’s Senior User Experience Researcher and Sociologist, Sam Ladner. In the moments before she signs on to our virtual interview, I imagine she sitting down at her computer, mentally preparing to have yet another conversation about the unique nature of her work. Sam is a busy woman. In addition to doing her job, she is constantly having to explain it. What exactly does a sociologist do at Microsoft?

Peeps Issue 01 / Feature
Written by Victor Barac
Photography by Marko Drobnjakovic

Shakespeares in the Ghetto

A key development in the rapid growth in popularity of Serbian hip hop has been the rise of social media, in particular YouTube—an indispensable tool for marketing music. It was viewing Serbian hip hop on YouTube that lured me to Belgrade and proved correct Marshall McLuhan’s dictum of how media globalization reduces cultural distance and brings people into unprecedented degree of contact and modes of interaction.

Peeps Issue 01 / The Lens
Written by Emma Louise Backe
Photography by Reinier Gerritsen

A Storied Commute

When I see a person reading in public I always wonder: what are you trying to learn from that book and what are you trying to learn about yourself? A story written by medical anthropologist Emma Backe, based on a photo essay by Amsterdam photographer Reinier Gerritsen, who explores the unwritten choreography of human behavior, as well as the isolation that can be experienced even within a crowd.

Peeps Issue 01 / Mini Feature
Written by Cristina Venegas
Photography by Alexandre Meneghini

Tech in Cuba: The Rhetoric and the Reality

Cuba’s infrastructure is in need of general updating and moments such as this one are a reminder of how infrastructures overlap to enable work, connectivity, politics and much more. Technology is often portrayed as an inevitable agent of progress, a democratic control-free zone where limitations on expression should be few. This utopian view of technology is challenged by experiences of Cuban citizens as they gain greater participation in the digital age.

Peeps Issue 02 / Practice
Written by Katrina Johnston-Zimmerman
Photography from PentaCityGroup

Syntax in the City

Think about the day-to-day experience of people moving around the globe or simply wandering around in their own city. Think about a tourist, but also think about a newcomer or a local. Cities are environments unlike any other in our world—ecosystems of places and parts that we humans create for ourselves to live in. This is a story about wayfinding—so much more than just signs and maps. It’s really about the democratic use of public space.

Peeps Issue 02 / Feature
Written by Mathilde Caro
Photography by Boris Svartzman

Not Wanted on the Rue Saint-Denis

It’s a February evening and a meeting is being held at the town hall of the 2nd arrondissement in Paris. A resident stands to speak. “We thought gentrification was under way,” she says, “and that it would eliminate prostitution. Can we expect to see an end to prostitution in this neighbourhood?” The debate was launched. Read this insightful investigation by anthropologist Mathillde Caro into contrasting values in a gentrifying Paris neighbourhood.

Peeps Issue 02 / Practice
Interviewed by Aliah EL-houni & Anya-Milana Sulaver
Illustration by Stephanie Hofmann; Photography by Nation Wong

Research Mixology

An interview with Airbnb’s Director of Research, Judd Antin. In the ten months he has been at Airbnb, Judd Antin has made a lot of things happen. He has put together a team that includes everyone from customer experience specialists, to ethnographers, to survey scientists. This mixture of methods and perspectives has yielded practical results and actionable strategies that have kept Airbnb in touch with the needs and desires of its hosts and guests.

Peeps Issue 02 / Feature
Written by Barbara Heer
Photography by Mark Lewis

Being Together with Strangers

Post-apartheid Johannesburg is often misunderstood as a city lacking connections across divided spaces and lifeworlds. If we pay close attention to urban everyday life, though, we can see that people living in the city are engaged in constant creation and appropriation of social spaces. Some of these spaces serve for social enclosure, but others also for social encounters. An investigative story from social anthropologist Barbara Heer.

Peeps Issue 02 / The Lens
Photography by Vittoria Zupicich

Between People and Architecture

Victor Buchli wrote in An Anthropology of Architecture, “the relationship between the body and build form is difficult to disentangle; it is impossible to clearly say where the body ends and built form begins.” In this photo essay by Vittoria Zupicich featuring beautiful geometric compositions of space and scale, the international photographer examines the relationship between architecture and the people who unconsciously affect it.

Peeps Issue 02 / Mini Feature
Written by Jen Barr
Photography by Meryl Schenker

On the Origins of the Bathroom Lineup

”The second act of the play is wrapping up; intermission is coming. I brace myself. The house lights brighten, and I am off, weaving around sauntering fellow theater-goers, past the lobby, and screeching to a halt at the end of the women’s restroom line.” In her fascinating essay for Peeps magazine, anthropologist Jen Barr explains some deep-seated issues behind the frequent long lines at women’s restrooms.

Peeps Issue 01 / Practice
Written by Gavin Johnston
Illustration by Tony Rodriguez

Beyond the Disease

Three days a week, David wakes up, showers, dresses, and plunges a needle into a vein. He’s been doing this since he was a child. He does this three days a week, for fifteen minutes, because if he doesn’t, a fall or scrape can land him in the hospital. This needle is a reality he’s lived with all 22 years of his life and one he will carry with him until his final days. Anthropologist Gavin Johnston shares the story of a research he conducted for a U.S. pharmaceutical company.

Peeps Issue 01 / Feature
Written by Graham Candy
Photography by Yuyang Liu

Winning and Losing in Modern China

I first met Hu in 2009. A computer programmer by trade, Hu was earning a middle-class salary by Chinese standards. He was single and rented a room in downtown Hangzhou, a major urban city along the coast of China. Altogether he appeared to have a vibrant social and family life, happily living the modern Chinese dream. By late 2012, he had a revelation of a different sort. Hu proudly told me that he had finally figured it out. In a nation of winners, he was a loser.

Peeps Issue 02 / Practice
Interviewed by Aliah EL-houni
Photography by Meryl Schenker

The Human Element at Microsoft

An interview with Microsoft’s Senior User Experience Researcher and Sociologist, Sam Ladner. In the moments before she signs on to our virtual interview, I imagine she sitting down at her computer, mentally preparing to have yet another conversation about the unique nature of her work. Sam is a busy woman. In addition to doing her job, she is constantly having to explain it. What exactly does a sociologist do at Microsoft?

Peeps Issue 01 / Feature
Written by Victor Barac
Photography by Marko Drobnjakovic

Shakespeares in the Ghetto

A key development in the rapid growth in popularity of Serbian hip hop has been the rise of social media, in particular YouTube—an indispensable tool for marketing music. It was viewing Serbian hip hop on YouTube that lured me to Belgrade and proved correct Marshall McLuhan’s dictum of how media globalization reduces cultural distance and brings people into unprecedented degree of contact and modes of interaction.

Peeps Issue 01 / The Lens
Written by Emma Louise Backe
Photography by Reinier Gerritsen

A Storied Commute

When I see a person reading in public I always wonder: what are you trying to learn from that book and what are you trying to learn about yourself? A story written by medical anthropologist Emma Backe, based on a photo essay by Amsterdam photographer Reinier Gerritsen, who explores the unwritten choreography of human behavior, as well as the isolation that can be experienced even within a crowd.

Peeps Issue 01 / Mini Feature
Written by Cristina Venegas
Photography by Alexandre Meneghini

Tech in Cuba: The Rhetoric and the Reality

Cuba’s infrastructure is in need of general updating and moments such as this one are a reminder of how infrastructures overlap to enable work, connectivity, politics and much more. Technology is often portrayed as an inevitable agent of progress, a democratic control-free zone where limitations on expression should be few. This utopian view of technology is challenged by experiences of Cuban citizens as they gain greater participation in the digital age.