Elvis Presley is shown during a karate workout, as seen in the film 'This Is Elvis', 1981.

Elvis and American Karate

Presley’s embrace of martial arts resonated with working- and middle-class Americans who felt alienated from the US justice system.
A group of holiday-makers sunning themselves on the beach at a South Coast resort, 1895

Inventing the Beach Read

Feeling guilty about kicking back with a paperback during vacation? There’s a precedent for escapist holiday reading, particularly during times of anxiety.
red junglefowl

Amazon Rivers, Globalizing Chickens, Non-Alignment

Well-researched stories from Science, Quanta Magazine, and other great publications that bridge the gap between news and scholarship.
A meeting of the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU) leaders, c.1906 - c.1907

Can a Woman Be a Genius?

Many Edwardian progressives and utopians put their hopes in the exceptional individual who was able to overcome obstacles with a force of will.
The slave ship Diligente was engaged in the illegal slave trade when it was seized in 1838. A lieutenant in the British Royal Navy painted this scene from the ship.

The Unbearable Middle Passage

In the eighteenth century, doctors recognized melancholy as a disease endemic to groups forcibly displaced from their homes, particularly enslaved Africans.
A street dog in Varanasi city, India

How Street Dogs Spend their Days

Generally lazy, often friendly, the dogs of India know how to relax.
Hadzabe men going for hunt in a morning at the bush

Carbon Offsets for the Hadza People, Swedish Meals, and Freedom in Taoism

Well-researched stories from Vox, Aeon, and other great publications that bridge the gap between news and scholarship.
A woman breast feeding her child, 13th century

Paying Moms to Breastfeed in Medieval Europe

The idea of offering remuneration to women for breastfeeding—even their own children—wasn’t unusual in late medieval and early modern Europe.
Piggy bank sinking in water

How We All Got in Debt

Consumer debt shapes American lives so thoroughly that it seems eternal and immortal, but it’s actually relatively new to the financial world.
Genghis Khan and his wife, Börte

Mongol Women, Mass Shootings, and Playful Rats

Well-researched stories from Atlas Obscura, Pysche, and other great publications that bridge the gap between news and scholarship.