Extra Credit: Well-researched 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 mystery of the 130,000-year-old mastodon (Wired)
by Eric Niiler
Evidence from the site of a fossilized mastodon skeleton in San Diego suggests that humans lived in North America 100,000 years earlier than previously believed.
Winning while pregnant (The New Yorker)
by Mary Pilon
We now know that when Serena Williams was pregnant when she won the Australian Open in January. Scientific wisdom about exertion during pregnancy has changed dramatically over the past few decades.
When man’s best friend was a squirrel (Atlas Obscura)
by Natalie Zarrelli
In the eighteenth century, squirrels were considered the ideal pet for an upper-class family. Children kept them on gold chains and offered them nuts and figs, and Benjamin Franklin even wrote an ode to one of the rodents.
How your smoking affects your grandkids (Harvard Magazine)
by Jonathan Shaw
In recent years, scientists have been exploring evidence that a person can pass on problems caused by stress or poor diet to their children and grandchildren through epigenetics. But now, a researcher has found evidence that these changes may be about in-utero exposures, not permanent genetic changes.
Songs and love in revolutionary Haiti (Public Books)
by Laurent Dubois
Many novelists and historians have pondered the meaning of the Haitian revolution. A novel newly translated into English offers a different viewpoint, centered on the life of a famous singer.
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.