Extra Credit: Our pick of stories from around the web that bridge the gap between news and scholarship. Brought to you each Tuesday from the editors of JSTOR Daily.
The birth of the dog (Psychology Today)
by Mark Derr
The intertwined story of dogs and people goes way back into prehistory. But we’re getting a better handle on our best friends’ origin, thanks to new research on the diverse genetics of dogs in the villages of developing countries.
Social skills via ukulele (Pacific Standard)
by Tom Jacobs
Pete Seeger might have predicted the results of a recent study that finds kids get along better if they take group lessons in the ukulele. The research suggests cooperative work—particularly making music together—increases sympathy and social skills.
Talking across the ideological divide (The New York Times)
By Robb Willer and Matthew Feinberg
How do you get conservatives to support same-sex marriage, or convince liberals that military spending is good? It takes really understanding the values the other side holds.
Rebuilding an army, and a country (The Washington Post)
By Nina Wilén
Unifying a country in the wake of civil war often means building a military made up of fighters from both sides. Getting former enemies to join forces is a tricky business, but one researcher’s work finds there are ways to make it work, including strong professional guidelines and socialization programs. Making sure soldiers get paid and fed adequately is pretty important too.
Oxytocin isn’t what you think (The Atlantic)
By Ed Yong
For the past decade, we’ve been talking about oxytocin as the love molecule, a magical chemical that makes us more trusting, caring, and cuddly. But a close look at studies that have been done on the subject (including the ones that never got published) reveals a more complicated picture.
Have you seen a story online that does a good job of bridging the gap between the news and scholarship? Or something that seems particularly well-researched? Let us know and we may include it in next week’s roundup. Email us at jstordaily_submissions (at) jstor (dot) org.