A family poses for a portrait in front of a fabric backdrop on the veranda of their home, in the early 1900s.

What the Reconstruction Meant for Women

Southern legal codes included parallel language pairing “master and slave” and “husband and wife.”
A 19th-century advertisement for Hood's Tooth Powder

How the Ban on Medical Advertising Hurt Women Doctors

Intended to protect consumers from unscrupulous quackery, a nineteenth-century ban on medical advertising proved to be a double-edged sword.
A camper van parked beside some trees in the fog

The New Nomads of #VanLife Reflect an Enduring Divide

A distinctly American restlessness is inspiring some to abandon the idea of a permanent home, while others are displaced by harsh realities.
The Indian's Vespers by Asher Brown Durand, 1847

Subscription Art for the 19th-Century Set

How the American Art-Union brought fine art to the people, via a subscription service, in the 1840s.
A social security card on a plain surface.

When Big Business Backed Social Security

Contemporary conservatives call for the U.S. government to ditch Social Security in favor of private savings. But it wasn't always this way.
Leonardo DiCaprio and Carey Mulligan in The Great Gatsby, 2013

What The Great Gatsby Reveals About The Jazz Age

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel embraced jazz, while also falling prey to the racist caricatures associated with it.

What Violent Acts Get Defined as Terrorism

Why was the Weather Underground group labelled as a terrorist organization, while the KKK was not? A brief look at the history of domestic terrorism.
Student in a Black Studies class in a west side Chicago classroom, 1973

African American Studies: Foundations and Key Concepts

This non-exhaustive list of readings in African American Studies highlights the vibrant history of the discipline and introduces the field.
Jill Lepore

Jill Lepore: How to Respond to the Crisis of Our Institutions

Lepore talks about presidential deceit, why women are often forgotten by history, and the “epistemological crisis” of our era.
Cropduster spraying field

War and Pest Control

Since World War I, the connections between pest control and war have been scientific, technological, institutional, and metaphorical.