Airport map Afghanistan

Why is the U.S. Military Occupying Bases Across Africa?

The U.S. occupation of Africa has become self-justifying. The U.S. military now must stay in Africa to protect the interests of the U.S. military in Africa.
Nero bust: Nero may have poisoned Britannicus, Claudius's son

Poisoning like the Romans

The Romans certainly have a reputation for using poisons, but what do we really know about this form of assassination in the classical era?
Stalin poster

What Do We Really Know about Joseph Stalin?

It took three more decades of Soviet rule before the archives dealing with Stalin and his times could be explored. And then the doors were shut again.
Iskander Miscellany

The Ultimate Bespoke Manuscript

In The Miscellany of Iskandar Sultan, sections of text stack on top of one another, interlaced like fretwork. Bursts of flowers and tangles of vines fill the empty spaces.
Thames tunnel walk

How the Thames Tunnel Revealed London’s Class Divide

The Thames Tunnel, the world's first underwater tunnel, is still in use 175 years after its long-delayed opening, but you can't shop there anymore.
Alexander The Great mosaic

The Other Alexander the Great

Stories emerged in the centuries after Alexander the Great’s death. They revolved around Alexander's failures, not his victories. The portrait that emerges is strangely poignant.
Serfdom in Russia

How American Slavery Echoed Russian Serfdom

Russian serfdom and American slavery ended within two years of each other; the defenders of these systems of bondage surprisingly shared many of the same arguments.
Victorian-era lacemakers

How the Victorians Politicized Lace

Scholar Elaine Freedgood tells the story of how, in the face of encroaching industrialism, handmade lace enjoyed a frilly revival.
North Vietnamese soldiers

The Tet Offensive: What Were They Thinking?

The Tet Offensive of January 1968 has been much studied from the American perspective, but what did the North Vietnamese think about it?
Chateaubriand portrait

The Writer Who Told 19th Century Europe What To Think of America

The French writer Chateaubriand made up or copied a great deal of what he wrote about the early United States. What he said had tremendous influence.