Alexander Wells

Featured Work

Review of Ludvík Vaculík’s A Czech Dreambook, in Full Stop

“My lies are as much mine as my truth,” he retorts, “and I don’t know which will prove the more reprehensible.” Vaculík wanted to de-glamorize himself and the other dissidents, forgive everyone for not being Havel, and then see what could be done from there. The intellectual, like everyone else, had a duty to stand accountable for who one is and what one might realistically be capable of.

Essay on Australia’s (literary) fascination for Berlin, in Kill Your Darlings

In its most enchanting moments, inner Berlin feels symbolic and surreal. You experience the past at such a vast, inhuman scale – so Wolf Lepenies – that you eventually just “remember a void.” Does Berlin’s well-packaged totalitarian backdrop really bring us face to face with the past? Or does it let us feel the nightmare then wake up, returning to our precious non-German innocence?

All Work


“Perpetual Motion Machine” on the history of fatigue and dreams of curing it for Hypocrite Reader

“What are Young Australians Searching For in Berlin?” for Kill Your Darlings

“An Egalitarian Estate” on radical social housing in Weimar Berlin for EXBERLINER (available here)

“Sydney’s other housing crisis” on Marrickville bird habitats for Sweaty City (available here)

“Berlin, After the Fall” for Meanjin

“Marrickville’s sweatshops: An historical view” for re/work exhibition at AIRspace Projects

“Whatever happened to the arts of peace?” for Overland

“Saving history from the Ramsay Centre’s warriors” for Overland

“More than mates: Walt Whitman and the art of friendship” for Homer

“Snarking towards Bethlehem: The Gawker Manifesto That Wasn’t” for The Harvard Advocate

“MADE” for The Harvard Advocate

“The Leaves of Others” for Fifteen Minutes (The Harvard Crimson)

“We All Live Here Together” for Fifteen Minutes (The Harvard Crimson)


With Jürgen Zimmerer on German colonial guilt for EXBERLINER

With Jürgen Martschukat on fitness culture for EXBERLINER

With Roanna Gonsalves on multicultural fiction for Writing New South Wales

With Andy Muir on Australian beachside noir for Writing New South Wales

With John Hughes for The Harvard Advocate


Alexander Wells is a writer, editor, and history researcher living in Berlin. His work has appeared in History Today, Meanjin, and The Lifted Brow among others, as well as the Harvard Advocate (where he was President). He has also researched and curated a number of local history projects on such topics as urban ecology, multiculturalism, and post-/industrial space. He is currently Books Editor of ExBerliner magazine.


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Twitter & Instagram: @ajbwells

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