The backstory on our favorite summertime foods:
In the 19th century, blackberry picking was both hobby and money-making endeavor for many Americans. Increased regulation of land use changed all that.
The barbecue boom in 1950s American was tied to nationalistic concepts of the "perfect family": patriarchal, suburban, and white.
Frederick Coville and Elizabeth White, two strangers, domesticated the blueberry together. They valued beauty and worked to support local communities.
With all due respect to hamburgers and apple pie, hot dogs are arguably the most American of foods.
Vacation, all you ever wanted:
Each of them has a distinctive structure and a complex history.
American tourism took the scenic route over the course of the twentieth century. A growing middle class and car ownership helped.
The first summer camps presented themselves as an natural alternative to encroaching industrial society.
In the 1920s, politicians saw workers’ time off as a way to mold society, encouraging workers to engage in politics and patriotism during their time off.
If you’re going camping this summer, will you rough it on a wilderness hike, or relax in a ...
Readings that capture the spirit of summer:
Stories by Meg Wolitzer, David Sedaris, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, E. Annie Proulx, Amy Tan, Donna Tartt, Lydia Millet, Lauren Groff, and more.
Poetry about all kinds of travel—from grand adventures to family vacations—by Elizabeth Bishop, Rita Dove, and more.
Summery poems by Mary Oliver, Matthew Zapruder, and other poets, along with seasonal paintings by Claude Monet and other artists.
And a few caveats to keep in mind:
The dangers of summer vacation.
Brain freeze, or the ice cream headache, is still little understood.
A history of shark attacks and public response to them.