RETRO is a publication that embodies its name: a celebration of old wonders once again the subject of significant fascination and debate; innovative creations born of nostalgia; and hard-won words that reveal how we came to where we are today.

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About Seth Abramson

Seth is an attorney, professor, New York Times-bestselling author, Newsweek columnist, editor, award-winning poet, cultural critic, and curatorial journalist who has authored eighteen books. He has been a culture columnist at Indiewire and the Huffington Post, teaches cultural theory at University of New Hampshire, and is one of the foremost American advocates of the cultural paradigm known as metamodernism—a subject on which he’s written popular and scholarly articles. His dissertation at the University of Wisconsin-Madison was a disciplinary history of creative writing in the United States from 1880 to the present; this research, in revised form, was published by Bloomsbury in 2018 as The Insider’s Guide to Graduate Degrees in Creative Writing.

In 2017, Josh Meyer, then the Senior Investigative Reporter with Politico, called Seth “one hell of an investigative journalist.” Meyer’s assessment was shortly thereafter endorsed by the National Council for the Training of Journalists, which named Seth one of the ten “most respected” freelance journalists in the U.S. and United Kingdom. Other 2018 NCTJ honorees included Pulitzer Prize winners Ronan Farrow and Bob Woodward and Emmy- and Murrow Award-winning reporter Christiane Amanpour.

A graduate of Dartmouth, Harvard Law School, and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop as well as and the literary studies doctoral program at University of Wisconsin, Seth has taught literary history, the history of critical theory, and journalism at the University of New Hampshire since 2015, and been a working journalist since 1994—when he became a reporter, at 17, for America’s oldest college newspaper, The Daily Dartmouth.

You can read Seth’s long-form biography here.

Subscription Rates

Becoming an entry-level subscriber to RETRO is free. To become a full subscriber to the site and gain unlimited access to the wide range of writing available on RETRO, the cost is just $5/month—the lowest price on Substack. Readers can also subscribe on an annual basis for $50, or become a founding member of RETRO for $100.

The History of RETRO

October 19, 2021: RETRO is founded.

October 20, 2021: RETRO debuts as the #19 history substack in the United States, having welcomed more than 1,500 visitors in its first 24 hours.

October 20, 2021: The RETRO email list hits triple digits as the publication rises to #17 in the substack history rankings.

October 21, 2021: As RETRO crosses 2,500 visitors in its first 60 hours of operation, it reaches #16 in the substack history rankings.

October 22, 2021: RETRO rises to #15 in the substack history rankings and reaches two hundred email-list subscribers as it releases its first-ever breaking news report, “Halloween Night Video Game Auction Set to Break Multiple World Records and Change Video Gaming Forever.”

October 23, 2021: RETRO rises to #13 in the substack history rankings.

October 29, 2021: Ten days post-founding, having seen over 5,000 visitors and 300 new email-list subscribers, RETRO rises to #12 in the substack history rankings from its starting position at #19.

November 13, 2021: In part on the strength of its first-ever subscription sale, RETRO moves up from #12 to #11 in the Substack history rankings.

November 17, 2021: RETRO establishes a November 2021 high for new daily website visitors (1,358).

November 19, 2021: On its one-month anniversary—having just launched a new Film sectionRETRO surpasses 500 email list subscribers and rises to #8 in the Substack history rankings.

December 1, 2021: RETRO jumps to #7 in the Substack history rankings.

December 21, 2021: RETRO establishes a December 2021 high for new daily website visitors (1,139).


Seth Abramson
Attorney, professor, Newsweek columnist, metajournalist, and New York Times bestselling author. Seen at CNN, CBS, HBO, BBC, CBC, The Washington Post and others.