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Neuroscience of Ventriloquism

How Ventriloquism Tricks the Brain

New research shows our brains place more weight on vision than hearing in identifying the source of a sound. But why?

Lingua Obscura

compliments

The Uncertain Art of the American Compliment

The way Americans compliment is maximalist and enthusiastic, but it may not always be sincere. Our resident linguist unpacks the language of politeness.

Roundup

Hammock reader summer

Summer Reading in JSTOR

Stories by Meg Wolitzer, David Sedaris, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, E. Annie Proulx, Amy Tan, Donna Tartt, Lydia Millet, Lauren Groff, and more.

Cabinet of Curiosities

Engraved Illustrations of Various Castles and Fortified Structures

The Medieval Castle That Pranked Its Visitors

At Hesdin, in France, the idyllic beauty of the grounds met the sadistic slapstick of the castle’s “engines of amusement.”

Suggested Readings

Rats, Aliens, and Killer Yeast

Well-researched stories from Pacific Standard, Slate, and other great publications that bridge the gap between news and scholarship.

Most Recent

Iris Origo La Foce

Iris Origo’s Italian War Diary

The marchese's 1939-1940 diary, detailing the months before Italy's armed alliance with Nazi Germany, is now available as A Chill in the Air.
Soldiers training in the Israeli Defense Forces

Is Mandatory Military Service Good for a Country?

A prescribed period of civic service may offer benefits, promoting active citizenship across the socioeconomic divide and creating strong social ties.
georgia o'keeffe

When Dole Sent Georgia O’Keeffe to Hawaii

In 1939, Dole Pineapple Company sent Georgia O’Keeffe to Hawaii for three months in order to produce works that could be used in their advertisements.
A phasmid stick insect with egg

The Incredible Phasmid Egg

Stick insects have eggs that look exactly like seeds. Scientists can't figure out why these masters of camouflage would lay eggs that resemble bird snacks.

More Stories

Long Reads

Narayan and Iravati Lavate

The Mumbai Couple Suing for Their Right to Die

Eighty-seven-year-old Narayan Lavate, and his wife, Iravati, 78, say they are “leading unproductive and obsolete lives.”

Something in the Water: Life after Mercury Poisoning

From 1932 to 1968, the Chisso chemical factory discharged up to 600 tonnes of mercury into the Shiranui Sea. This led to mass poisoning and a UN treaty.
Slavoj Zizek

Getting a Grip on Slavoj Žižek (with Slavoj Žižek)

The Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek is famous for his provocative takes, but how should we understand his basic ideas?
Jordy Rosenberg

Queering Jack Sheppard

An interview with author Jordy Rosenberg about his new novel, Confessions of the Fox.

The ballpark riot was the culmination of an anti-gay backlash.

The Night They Drove Disco Down

Blackberries

The Crucial Southern Blackberry

In the 19th century, blackberry picking was both hobby and money-making endeavor for many Americans. Increased regulation of land use changed all that.
entrepreneurs

Entrepreneur Personality Test

A study of successful entrepreneurs finds a high level of emotional intelligence and sociability, along with a marked need to dominate.
Washington Monument

When Washington D.C. Became a Tourist Destination

When the U.S. federal government first moved to D.C. in 1800, the city was still largely swamp. Tourists didn't start to visit until many decades later.