The Atlantic Daily: Let's Circle Back on That

We’re giving American office culture its quarterly performance review.

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The Atlantic

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Let’s circle back on that: We're giving American office culture its quarterly performance review.

While the white-collar class is still tucked away at home, dreaming of (or dreading) the return of office life, the majority of Americans are back at work.

Just 13.4 percent of the United States worked remotely last month because of the pandemic, according to a Bureau of Labor Statistics survey. That’s down from roughly 35 percent in May 2020, the first month the data was collected.

If you work from home, the current “return to office” phenomenon is probably much smaller and more nuanced than you guessed, my colleague Elaine Godfrey reports. But the pandemic tested American work mythology in ways that can help inform our cultural understanding of work, and how it’s changing.


The news in three sentences:

(1) Johnson & Johnson says a second shot of its vaccine boosts immunity against COVID-19. (2) President Joe Biden called for international unity in fighting the coronavirus in a speech at the United Nations. (3) The Department of Homeland Security is investigating an incident in which Border Patrol agents on horseback aggressively confronted Haitian migrants.


Today’s Atlantic-approved activity:

It’s the official last day of summer. You don’t get a link here today. Just get outside.

A break from the news:

Ebooks are an abomination.


Every weekday evening, our editors guide you through the biggest stories of the day, help you discover new ideas, and surprise you with moments of delight. Subscribe to get this delivered to your inbox.