THE ALIGNIST is on a mission to create an empathy-based understanding of the world.
One novel and one country at a time.
It's one thing to report from around the world. It's another to bring stories home to readers. That's what prompted reporter Beenish Ahmed to think of new ways to deliver news.
THE ALIGNIST is not another push notification or sound bite. It's a way to ease into a genuine understanding of a place. Guided by the characters of a novel, subscribers become invested in their realities. Page by page, the "roadmap" backs up the author's imaginings with real world information to connect fact to fiction. Guided by historical anecdotes, key statistics, individual testimony, and reported material along with an assortment of photos, subscribers come away with a deeply human understanding of each country featured by THE ALIGNIST. As often as possible, there will be an opportunity to pose any remaining questions or curiosities to the novel's author and an expert on the issues s/he explores in a live Q&A.
A premium edition allows for an even more robust exploration of a place by offering subscribers a multi-sensory experience of the place their reading about. Authentic recipes collected from top regional chefs allow subscriber to sample the dishes the characters of the novel might eat. Ethically-sourced artisanal spices, tea, and confections add to this culinary retreat. Subscribers can experience the textures of a culture through handmade crafts and original art works. Each of the items are ethically sourced, allowing subscribers to not just read about a place, but to give back to it too.
Beenish came up with the idea after reporting on immense human tragedies — from the persecution of LGBT people in Haiti to attacks on elderly people in indigenous communities in Kenya to brutal attacks by the Taliban in Pakistan — and realizing that it was hard to make people care about so much strife, so far away. THE ALIGNIST is meant to inform you about the world we share in a focused way, one that begins with empathy and ends with a deeper understanding of the realities of place so that the next time a story from that corner of the world makes headlines, you have a reason to care.