Photo of an original engraving from the Works of William Hogarth published in 1833.

The Shameless City

The discourse around police raids of so-called molly houses reflected the fear that London was a new Sodom where anonymity allowed people to be shameless.
Tenzing Norgay

Tenzing Norgay: The Mountaineer Who Refused to be Categorized

By remaining vague about his own biography, Norgay called into question the idea of nationhood and made a deafening point about actions speaking louder than words.
Sir Walter Raleigh, English explorer of the Americas smokes a pipe of the tobacco he has brought back from his expedition, while his servant, thinking he is on fire, hurries towards him with a jug of water, circa 1580

How Books Taught Europeans to Smoke

The printed word helped spread the inhaling habit across the continent.
Bright and colorful land- and seasape of St Kitts and Nevis.

Saint Kitts and Nevis

Sandy beaches and luxury hotels seem to define this Caribbean nation, but its the music and architecture that truly speak to its complicated history.
From Codex Manesse

The Complicated History of Pointy Hats

What do sorcerers, bishops, and garden gnomes all have in common? Pointy hats that share a common story deeply enmeshed in European antisemitism.
An illustration from Arabian Nights, 1907

We Dream of Genie

In antebellum America, the voyages and adventures of Sinbad and Aladdin in the Arabian Nights nourished a young nation's dreams.

Inventing an American Indian Rebellion

False rumors of an alleged Wampanoag uprising on Nantucket Island in 1738 were turned into a story of an Indian rebellion thwarted via a Boston newspaper.
A sanitary-commission nurse and her patients at Fredericksburg, May 1864

The Post-Civil War Opioid Crisis

Many servicemen became addicted to opioids prescribed during the war. Society viewed their dependency as a lack of manliness.
The food court in Lion Plaza, San Jose, CA

The Asian American History of Silicon Valley Shopping Malls

Shopping centers in East San Jose that originally served working-class immigrants have been transformed by the influx of transnational tech professionals.
The entrance of the National Association Opposed To Woman Suffrage's headquarters

Women Against Women’s Suffrage

The fight for women’s suffrage is often depicted as pitting women against men. But some women made it their life’s mission to campaign against it.