A People’s Obituary of Henry Kissinger

For decades, Kissinger kept the great wheel of American militarism spinning ever forward.

Henry Kissinger, Who Shaped World Affairs Under Two Presidents, Dies at 100

He was the only person ever to be national security adviser and secretary of state at the same time. He was also the target of relentless critics.
New York state legislator George Michaels thinks hard at his desk

Revisiting New York’s Historic Abortion Law in “Deciding Vote”

Jeremy Workman and Robert Lyons’s film reconstructs the passage of a 1970 law that made the state a sanctuary for people seeking abortions.
A portrait of Andrew Jackson.

Whiggism Is Still Wrong

Vivek Ramaswamy says he wants to "make hard work cool again." He isn’t the first.
Gen. James Longstreet.

The Conquered General

The back-and-forth life of Confederate James Longstreet.
Capital Hill at night.

Government Shutdowns Were Never Necessary Anyway

Government shutdowns only became possible in 1980, when the Attorney General offered a new interpretation of an 1870 law.
Former U.S. President Donald Trump prepares to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference CPAC held at the Hilton Anatole on Aug. 6, 2022 in Dallas.

What Civil War History Says About Attempts to Use the Insurrection Clause to Keep Trump From Office

Debates about handling Confederates reveal that the 14th Amendment bars unrepentant insurrectionists from office.
U.S. Capitol building

Searching for the Perfect Republic

On the 14th amendment – and if it might stop Trump.

Surviving a Wretched State

A discussion on the difficulty of keeping faith in a foundationally anti-Black republic.
Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr., left, announcing that he is nominating Kimberly Teehee, right, as a Cherokee Nation delegate to the US House of Representatives

One of the Oldest Broken Promises to Indigenous Peoples Is for a Voice in Congress

A treaty commitment to seat a delegate representing the Cherokee Nation in the House has gone unmet for two centuries.
Claudia Alta Taylor “Lady Bird” Johnson

Listening to Lady Bird Johnson, in Her Own Words

“The Lady Bird Diaries” depicts the former first lady as a mass of contradictions.
Picture of Frederick Douglass overlaid on a poster advertising a speech of his.

The Annotated Frederick Douglass

In 1866, the famous abolitionist laid out his vision for radically reshaping America in the pages of "The Atlantic."
A drawing of James Longstreet, zoomed in on his eyes.

The Confederate General Whom All the Other Confederates Hated

James Longstreet became a champion of Reconstruction. Why?
School house with Black children playing around it.

How Reconstruction Created American Public Education

Freedpeople and their advocates persuaded the nation to embrace schooling for all.
Engraving of President William Henry Harrison

This President was Widely Attacked for Being Too Old to Run — at 67

In 1840, William Henry Harrison was mocked for his presidential run at age 67 — 15 years younger than President Biden would be at the start of a second term.
An American World War II veteran salutes on a beach during the 1994 anniversary commemorations for the invasion of Normandy.

Let’s Give Black World War II Vets What We Promised

The G.I. Bill created a prosperous middle class that was altogether too white.
Join, or Die , a 1754 political cartoon by Benjamin Franklin.

A Shotgun Wedding

Barely-disguised hostilities sometimes belied the rebels’ declared identity as the United States of America.
Ohio abortion rights activists.

The Problem With the Abortion-Rights Move That Worked in Ohio

History shows that activists can win statewide fights—but that the strategy might be unsustainable long-term.
Photo of a young Donald Trump greeting Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura in Minneapolis on Jan. 7, 2000

Jesse ‘The Body’ Ventura’s Shocking Election 25 Years Ago Previewed Trump’s

The former pro wrestler says his surprise election as Minnesota governor paved the way for Donald Trump. Now he looks back “shamefully” on their past ties.
Photo of a homeless person sleeping on the street wrapped in a blanket on top of cardboard.

A Blueprint From History for Tackling Homelessness

During the New Deal, the U.S. knew that economic recovery depended upon housing.
A Mexican family stands next to the border wall between Mexico and the United States, in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico on May 23, 2017.

America’s Border Wall Is Bipartisan

Biden continues a tradition of building fences at the US-Mexico border that long precedes Donald Trump.
Former President Nixon addressing the press

The Saturday Night Massacre at 50

What actually happened in one of the most disruptive episodes of the supposed Watergate scandal?
Painting of Reverend Lemuel Haynes preaching

The Revolution Within the American Revolution

Supported and largely led by slaveholders, the American Revolution was also, paradoxically, a profound antislavery event.
A view of the campus of New College of Florida in Sarasota, Fla,. on Jan. 19, 2023.

The History Behind the Right's Effort to Take Over Universities

The right has had qualms about universities since the 1930s.
Women with blankets and fans, in a scene from Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon.”

The Missing Politics of Scorsese’s ‘Killers of the Flower Moon’

Blaming corrupt individuals rather than federal Indian policy for the violence and exploitation perpetrated against the Osage Nation misses the mark.
Fourteenth Amendment.

The Fourteenth Amendment's Ambiguous Section Three

Scholars and pundits are suddenly interested in the section disqualifying insurrectionists from offices. But text and history don't offer clear answers.
Two women working for the 1940 census.

'Are You Still Living?'

Who is counted by the census, how, and for what purpose, has changed a lot since 1790.
Rachel Maddow speaking

Rachel Maddow Offers a Chilling History Lesson — and Hope for Today

In her new book, ‘Prequel,’ she looks at a past moment of crisis that might help us understand both the threats we face today and how we can endure them.
Proposed U.S. Census survey that combines race and ethnicity.

An American Puzzle: Fitting Race in a Box

Census categories for race and ethnicity have shaped how the nation sees itself. Here’s how they have changed over the last 230 years.
Political analyst Kevin P. Phillips in September 1970.

The GOP’s ‘Southern Strategy’ Mastermind Just Died. Here’s His Legacy.

Kevin Phillips help set the Republican Party on the path that led it to Trump.