Miraikan, The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, Tokyo, Japan.

Here Is a Human Being

The Spotify and Ancestry partnership proposes to entertain users based on the narrowest possible conception of who they are.
Soldiers burn Marxist books and leaflets in Santiago, Chile, Sept. 23, 1973, following the military coup that ousted President Salvador Allende.

How We Roasted Donald Duck, Disney's Agent of Imperialism

Why a 47-year old anti-colonialist critique by Chilean dissidents may be newly relevant in the Trump era.
Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch in the 1962 film version of Harper Lee's

How Reconsidering Atticus Finch Makes Us Reconsider America

In his new book, historian Joseph Crespino offers lessons drawn from Harper Lee's ambivalent treatment of this iconic character.
Still from

Brett Kavanaugh Goes to the Movies

A film scholar reflects on the image of masculinity depicted in "Grease 2," released the same summer of Kavanaugh's alleged assault.
US soldiers gather around a guitar player during Operation Yellowstone, January 18, 1968.

The Vietnam War: A History in Song

The ‘First Television War’ was also documented in over 5,000 songs.
Leonard Bernstein and Glenn Gould at the piano during a New York Philharmonic rehearsal, 1961.

Who's the Boss?

When conductor and soloist clash, a concerto performance can turn into a contest of wills.
American novelist, writer, playwright, poet, essayist and civil rights activist James Baldwin poses at his home in southern France, on November 6, 1979.

James Baldwin’s Ideas and Activism during the 1980s

Baldwin's often overlooked final years of activism during the 1980's.
A page from Boston College's 1980 yearbook.

Why Do People Sign Yearbooks?

Commemorative class books evolved from practical notebooks into collections of hair clippings, two-line rhymes, and summer wishes.
Edna Lewis, center, with two fellow chefs at the American Chefs' tribute to James Beard on June 3, 1985.

The People of Freetown

Can renowned Southern chef and writer Edna Lewis' radical communist politics be parsed out by analyzing her cookbooks?
Caroline and the Geek, the morning after. (Sixteen Candles, 1984.)

The Rape Culture of the 1980s, Explained by Sixteen Candles

The beloved romantic comedy’s date rape scene provides important context for the Brett Kavanaugh accusations.
A group of adolescent boys at a California pool hall in 1940.

Teen ‘Boys Will Be Boys’: A Brief History

The concept of adolescence is a recent invention — and it has been applied unevenly to children from different backgrounds.
Two heavy Auto-Tune users, Kanye West and T-Pain, perform at the Rolling Stone 40th Anniversary Party (2008).

How Auto-Tune Revolutionized the Sound of Popular Music

An in-depth history of the most important pop innovation of the last 20 years, from Cher’s “Believe” to Kanye West to Migos.