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Black and white headshot of author Erin Blakemore

Erin Blakemore

Erin Blakemore is a Boulder, Colorado-based journalist Her debut book, The Heroine’s Bookshelf (Harper), won a Colorado Book Award for Nonfiction and has been translated into Italian, Korean and Portuguese. Erin has written about history and culture and other topics for Smithsonian.com, The Washington Post, TIME, mental_floss, NPR’s This I Believe, The Onion, Popular Science, Modern Farmer and other journals. You can find more of her work at erinblakemore.com.

Hellen Keller and Mark Twain in side by side black and white photographs

History’s Other Odd Couple: Mark Twain and Helen Keller

Helen Keller and Mark Twain's unusual friendship.
Josephine Baker laying on top of a tiger rug in black and white

The Fuss About Josephine Baker

 A new one-woman Broadway show puts Josephine Baker back in the public consciousness.
Still from The Sound of Music showing the von Trapp family sprawled out and circling a guitar-playing Maria

“The Sound of Music” at 50

Iconic musical "The Sound of Music" celebrates its 50th anniversary.
Black and white close-up of Clara Bow in profile

Before There Was ’50 Shades’…There Was Elinor Glyn’s ‘It’

A writer named Elinor Glyn wrote a novel entitled "It and other stories in 1927"

Carter G. Woodson, The Father of Black History Month

The origins of Black History Month date back to 1926, when a historian named Carter G. Woodson spearheaded “Negro History Week.”
Black and white headshot of Sylvia Plath

Sylvia Plath’s “Ariel,” 50 Years Later

Published in 1965, Ariel was published after Sylvia Plath herself had already been dead for two years.
Blurred figures of people walking

What Price Fast Fashion?

Fast fashion is a phenomenon that transcends the runway, crosses borders, and cuts across barriers of class, culture, and emerging economies
By Unknown; distributed by Epoch Film Co. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

“Birth of a Nation”: 100 Years Later

The Birth of a Nation—1915's blockbuster hit and the most popular movie of its day—was released 100 years ago this month.
The car token at the starting square of the Monopoly board game

What’s in a Game? Monopoly at 80

The real-estate game Monopoly turns 80 in 2015
Scene of a parade from the 2014 movie Annie.

Our Obsession with Orphans: A Short History from Jane Eyre to Annie

Little Orphan Annie is the latest in a sequence of pop culture foundlings, but America’s orphans of the Great Depression weren’t endearing at all.