The Joys of Cherry Blossoms (Sapiens)
by Gideon Lasco
In Japan, hanami, or “cherry blossom viewing,” was once a pleasure for aristocrats only. Over the centuries, people have spread the practice—and the iconic cherry trees—all over the country, delighting local residents and visitors alike.
When Criminal Organizations are the Government (Knowable Magazine)
by Pablo Fonseca Q.
In many local areas across Latin America, the official governments have little to no real authority. Instead, violent criminal organizations rule—and sometimes provide safety and amenities in ways that local people find preferable to government power.
Marking the Anthropocene (Yale Environment 360)
by Christian Schwägerl
To officially recognize a geological epoch, geologists find a representative spot to place a golden spike. The candidates for the Anthropocene reflect the deep impact of human activity even in the wildest, most remote places.
The Things Salt Creek Has Seen (Southern Spaces)
by Thomas Hallock
In St. Petersburg, Florida, today, Salt Creek is fragmented, polluted, and often unrecognized by those who walk past it. Tracing its route through history unveils dreams of leisure, violent injustice, and laborious, often hopeless, efforts to control the natural world.
The 150-year-old Legacy of Black Elected Leaders (Saturday Evening Post)
by Ben Railton
For many decades after Reconstruction, propagandistic portrayals mocked the Black men elected to public office during that period. This obscured the triumphant personal stories of these leaders.
Got a hot tip about a well-researched story that belongs on this list? Email us here.