brass sundial

Sundials, Sentiments, and S-Town

The immensely popular podcast S-Town features some memorable sundial inscriptions. But where did the slightly morbid tradition come from?
A row of empty office cubicles.

“Deaths of Despair”: What’s Really Killing Americans

Why a large swath of middle-aged, middle-class white Americans, especially those with lower levels of education, are dying more "deaths of despair."
Hospice care

Changing the Way We Die

Dying may seem like a straightforward business, but there are almost as many ways to approach the end of life as there are to approach life itself.
Dancing Skeletons, 'Dance of Death' Rare Books Keywords: epb 5822

English Sweating Sickness: The Epidemic You Forgot to Be Terrified Of

The 15th and 16th epidemics of English sweating sIckness still fascinate historians and epidemiologists. 

On Raising the Dead

A biotech company wants to use stem cell therapy to restore neurological function in patients who have been declared braindead.
Elder care

Let’s Talk About Dying Well

Physicians and family members still have trouble talking candidly about dying and what it means to die well.
1871 Life insurance policy

Putting a Price on a Life

If you have a life insurance policy, that means your insurance company pays your beneficiaries when you die, ...
Anna Wintour Costume Center, Lizzie and Jonathan Tisch Gallery
Image: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Women’s Expressions of Grief, from Mourning Clothes to Memory Books

Mourning clothes were a signal to the world that a family—really, that a woman had suffered a loss.
Empty Headstones

Green Burial and the North-South Divide

Embalming practices were first introduced in the US during the Civil War to preserve bodies for transportation.