Orange cider booth at the World's Fair.

The Hottest Drink of the 1893 World's Fair Was an Artificial Orange 'Cider'

"You're drinking something that some guy just cobbled together out of Lake Michigan water and food dye.”
Law and Political Economy Project

Recovering the Left-Wing Free Trade Tradition

Free trade has been defended primarily by neoliberals who cared little about social justice or democracy. An examination of its history paints a different picture.
The Hollywood sign replaced with the words "The End."

The Life and Death of Hollywood

Film and television writers face an existential threat.
Branko Milanovic, 2017.

The Problematic Past, Present, and Future of Inequality Studies

An intellectual history of inequality in economic theory reveals the ideological reasons behind the field’s resurgence in the last few decades.
Etching of friends playing a game of chess, dated to the nineteenth century.

Get Capitalists’ Grubby Hands Off Our Hobbies

Christian moralists long promoted hobbies as a way to occupy idle hands, bringing the work ethic into free time. Today hobbies risk turning into side hustles.
The United Farm Worker’s 1,000 Mile March, 1975.

How Unions Are Made

A new history of labor organizing in Coachella tells us the story of the United Farm Workers and how its rank-and-file members drove the union to success.
Title card of the cartoon, featuring FDR committing money to a federal housing program.

The Tragedy and Tenacity of Public Housing in America

A cartoon report on the only policy proven to address the housing shortage and how racism, inept management, and disinvestment led to long-term decline.
An assortment of Girl Scout cookies.

The Truth Behind the Girl Scout Cookie Graveyard

Even popular cookies can end up permanently cut from the roster.
The cover of "Beyond Norma Rae" by Aimee Loiselle

Who Makes the American Working Class: Women Workers and Culture

Female industrial workers across the country and from diverse racial backgrounds fought to tell their own stories.
Depositors of a failed bank hold a protest during the Great Depression.

A Decisive Influence: The American Public’s Role in Financial Regulation

The history of grassroots banking politics has been overlooked — and even denied.
Continental Congress voting for independence.

Mother’s Milk of the Revolution

Right from the beginning, a commercial spirit and the wealth it generated were essential to creating and constituting America.

The Deep and Enduring History of Universal Basic Income

While the concept stretches back centuries, it has garnered significant attention in recent decades.
A photograph of Anne Morrissy next to the cover of her book, "Street Fight."

The Chicago Taxi Wars of the 1920s

The turbulent history of an often forgotten moment that would leave blood in the streets and shape the modern landscape of Chicago.
A photograph of an AR-15 rifle, a pistol, and a knife in camoflage print, as well as bullets and a pair of gloves.

Give Your Mom a Gun

America’s favorite gun.
Caitlin Clark celebrating on basketball court

Caitlin Clark’s Scoring Record Spotlights the History of a Forgotten College Sports Association

Before being pushed aside by the NCAA, the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women governed women’s college athletics.
An early Paramount logo, picturing the iconic ring of stars around a mountain with the words "A Paramount Release."

The Ruthless Rise and Fall of Paramount Pictures During Hollywood’s Golden Age

The venerable movie studio once defined the industry's zeal for consolidation, pioneering vertical integration and serving as the model for its major rivals.
Ferris wheel at Cony Island.
partner

Spending My Free Time Researching Free Time

One academic tells the story behind his new book -- and his next one.
Greenwood District, Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Class, Race, and the Formation of Urban Black Communities

A review of three new studies about how race and class intersect.
The State Capitol building in Richmond, Va.
partner

Debt Has Long Been a Tool for Limiting Black Freedom

In pre-Civil War Richmond, Black people were forced to literally pay for the mechanisms of white supremacy.
"Choosing the Ring" painting by Jean Carolus (1814–1897).

How Diamond Rings Became a Symbol of Love

While engagement or wedding rings are certainly not a new idea, the prevalence of diamonds is a more recent phenomenon.
Irma Sherman, Chair of McMaid Workers Organizing Committee.

How Four Black Women Changed Labor Organizing Forever

40 years ago in Chicago, McMaid workers sparked a movement.
A man surfs the web on an early box-computer which emits neon green light

How Corporations Tried—And Failed—To Control the Spread of Content Online

The recent history of copyright in music cannot be separated from the rise of technologies for the recording and transmission of content online.
Economist Milton Friedman poses next to a bust sculpture of himself

The Century of Milton Friedman

An interview with Jennifer Burns on her authoritative new biography of the American economist and the personal and intellectual origins of his theories.
Book cover; painting of Founding Fathers sitting around a table

The Continental Dollar: How the American Revolution Was Financed with Paper Money

Economists and historians have been telling us the wrong story about Continental currency for two centuries.
At center: organized labor leader John L. Lewis surrounded by crowds of male workers of all races.

Fragile Juggernaut

Introducing a project on US labor history, exploring what we can learn from 1930s-1950s industrial struggles.
Row of suburban homes.

White America Facing Its Ghosts

The slow unraveling of a nation’s suburbs.
A group of birds with one standing on top of the rest.

Rules for the Ruling Class

How to thrive in the power élite—while declaring it your enemy.
Fleet of Spirit Airways planes on airport tarmac

The Spirit Airlines Paradox

Without smart regulation, price competition turns into a race to the bottom.
A K-mart store

Kmart Elegy

A formerly dominant American retail chain nears extinction.
Rep. David McKinley (R-WV) tries unsuccessfully to hail a taxi as cabbies stage a rolling protest against app-based ride-hailing services.

Uber and the Impoverished Public Expectations of the 2010s

A new book shows that Uber was a symbol of a neoliberal philosophy that neglected public funding and regulation in favor of rule by private corporations.