An illustration from the cover of Grendel by John Gardner

The Question of Race in Beowulf

J.R.R. Tolkien’s seminal scholarship on Beowulf centers a white male gaze. Toni Morrison focused on Grendel and his mother as raced and marginal figures.
Serio-Comic War Map For The Year 1877. Fred W. Rose. 1877. Persuasive Maps: PJ Mode Collection

Persuasive Cartography: An Interview with Map Collector PJ Mode

A collection of rare maps explores their power as visual messengers.
Leonardo DiCaprio and Carey Mulligan in The Great Gatsby, 2013

What The Great Gatsby Reveals About The Jazz Age

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel embraced jazz, while also falling prey to the racist caricatures associated with it.
Shena Mcauliffe

The Wonderland Awaits: Researching The Good Echo

Author Shena McAuliffe describes how she used JSTOR to research her debut novel, The Good Echo.

Climate Change Turns Cute Birds into Brain-Eating Zombies

European great tits kill migratory pied flycatchers over nesting sites. The warming weather is to blame.
Zion National Park

When the Park Ranger Was Not Your Friend

Early 20th century National Park Service Rangers were a notoriously rough-and-tumble lot.
A person looking at a map, holding a pen

Ten Poems about Travel

Poetry about all kinds of travel—from grand adventures to family vacations—by Elizabeth Bishop, Rita Dove, and more.
Harriet Beecher Stowe George Eliot

When Harriet Beecher Stowe and George Eliot Were Penpals

These 19th-century novelists might seem to have little in common. But for 11 years they wrote each other letters, forging an unusual literary friendship.
Ignaz Semmelweis

The Man Who Invented Modern Infection Control

He's hailed as the "father of infection control" and the "savior of mothers," but the truth about Ignaz Semmelweis is more complicated than that.