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Sing Sing prison, with warden T. M. Osborne and two other men, c. 1915

Were Early American Prisons Similar to Today’s?

A correctional officer’s history of 19th century prisons and modern-day parallels. From Sing Sing to suicide watch, torture treads a fine line.

Take Two

From a movie ad for 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, 1917

The Shark-Fighting Brothers behind 20,000 Leagues under the Sea

In 1916, the Williamson brothers used their father's underwater photography device to film a fight with a shark, piquing Universal Pictures' interest.

Annotations

A print based on David Gilmour Blythe's fanciful painting of Lincoln writing the Emancipation Proclamation

The Emancipation Proclamation: Annotated

Abraham Lincoln proclaimed freedom for enslaved people in America on January 1, 1863. Today, we've annotated the Emancipation Proclamation for readers.

Pasts Present

Holiday Supply Chain Issues of Ancient Rome

Hey, at least we’re not trying to track down frankincense and myrrh.

American Prison Newspapers 1880-2020

50 Years Later: The Evolution of Prison Policy

Buried within Adelante is evidence of a fleeting attempt at prison reform and oversight in Connecticut. Is history repeating itself?

Most Recent

Skeleton of a man, riding the skeleton of a horse

Horse People, Malaria History, and Nuclear Waste

Well-researched stories from Nursing Clio, The Narwhal, and other great publications that bridge the gap between news and scholarship.
Poster promoting the Olympic bobsled run at Lake Placid

Antisemitism at the 1932 Winter Olympics

The 1932 Winter Olympics were a small foreshadowing of what was to come in 1936 Berlin.
Paris, France, 1900

Graffiti: Jaytalking in 19th Century Paris

The files of Paris police from the late nineteenth century reveal the tumultuous politics of the time through the graffiti recorded in them.
19th century lithograph telling the story of the 1763 attack by the Paxton Gang against the local tribe of Susquehannock peoples in Pennsylvania

Colonial Civility and Rage on the American Frontier

A 1763 massacre by colonial settlers exposed the the irreconcilable contradictions of conquest by people concerned with civility.

More Stories

Take Two

From a movie ad for 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, 1917

The Shark-Fighting Brothers behind 20,000 Leagues under the Sea

In 1916, the Williamson brothers used their father's underwater photography device to film a fight with a shark, piquing Universal Pictures' interest.

Annotations

A print based on David Gilmour Blythe's fanciful painting of Lincoln writing the Emancipation Proclamation

The Emancipation Proclamation: Annotated

Abraham Lincoln proclaimed freedom for enslaved people in America on January 1, 1863. Today, we've annotated the Emancipation Proclamation for readers.

Pasts Present

Holiday Supply Chain Issues of Ancient Rome

Hey, at least we’re not trying to track down frankincense and myrrh.

American Prison Newspapers 1880-2020

50 Years Later: The Evolution of Prison Policy

Buried within Adelante is evidence of a fleeting attempt at prison reform and oversight in Connecticut. Is history repeating itself?

Long Reads

Nadezhda von Meck

Tchaikovsky’s Patroness

Madame von Meck offered Tchaikovsky her generous patronage, but spoke to him only through letters.

Eight Women Astronomers You Should Know

A guided tour of selected luminaries of astronomy, from Ancient Greece to today.
The Actor Arashi Wakano as a wakashu in a kappa (raincoat)

The Disappearance of Japan’s “Third Gender”

Gender roles in Edo Japan recognized an in-between position for young men, called Wakashu, that was erased as Japan westernized.
Vintage engraving of The Bench, by William Hogarth. 1758, depicts four judges listening to a case in the Court of Common Pleas.

Does Law Exist to Provide Moral Order?

Is social cohesion possible in plural societies? Philosopher H. L. A. Hart weighed in amid debates on abortion and same-sex relationships.

MLK’s popular image—transmitted in elementary school lessons for the holiday—has been drained of its radical social critiques and has instead become a generic symbol of equality and kindness to all.

Ronald Reagan and the Rewriting of Martin Luther King’s Legacy

Ghostface from Scream

We All “Scream” for the Metatextual

Do you like scary movies? How about movies that scare you while satirizing and paying homage to their genre?
A screenshot from Squid Game

The Gruesome Truth at the Heart of Squid Game

Would you be willing to play games to get out of debt? Would you sell your organs?
From the Spring 1972 cover of Ms. Magazine

Ms. Magazine’s Tricky Relationship with Advertising

On the fiftieth anniversary of Ms. Magazine, a look back at how the publication managed advertising demands while maintaining its founding ethos.