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History, Arts and Literature

Covering topics of American history, including The Constitution, literature and various works of art.

Elon Musk’s $44 billion deal to buy Twitter roiled the Internet despite his claims to be acting in the interests of free speech and transparency. An author argues that crowd-sourcing wisdom is a poor substitute for old-school expertise in the search for truth.
As the 50th anniversary of the break-in approaches, a recent book charts the transformation of the Nixon administration’s bungled burglary to a redefinition of America’s relationship with its leaders and institutions.
Our system is too open to frivolous lawsuits intended to squelch free speech. There’s a lot that state lawmakers could do to protect Americans’ First Amendment rights.
Weeks after the U.S. and the G7 countries weaponized the global financial system to impose their harshest-ever sanctions on Russia, fissures are becoming apparent. Countries impose but often backpedal on sanctions against bad actors for a simple reason — a reluctance to go to war.
Public stairways were originally built by the hundreds into the hills for a walking workforce that has nearly disappeared. But fans praise the role of the unique transportation system and continue to use them today.
It’s a fast-growing, multibillion-dollar industry that provides lots of jobs and consists mostly of small businesses. But it’s poorly understood by economic developers.
The elevation of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the nation’s highest court will not only make history but help shape America’s future, one case at a time.
The increasing restrictiveness of copyright threatens our commons of creative work that anyone can borrow from and build on. The public domain needs a physical capital where it could be celebrated and encouraged.
Defending an "unteachable" classic of American literature has become the life’s work of a Twain scholar, costing him professionally and personally.
After a stormy confirmation process characterized by partisan recriminations in the U.S. Senate, Ketanji Brown Jackson appears to be set to take her seat on the Supreme Court. More than three dozen others have been denied over the last 235 years.
In the 19th century, Franconia Notch, a popular tourist site known for its pristine beauty, came under threat from the logging industry. A coalition of women’s groups started a grass-roots campaign to conserve the region.
Just 51 years old, nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson, if confirmed, would join a growing list of relatively young justices who are likely to serve for much longer than was anticipated when lifetime appointments were first codified.
Our resident historian explores three things – court packing, judicial review and meeting the expectations of the appointing presidents – that are not what you thought they were.
The radicalization of a congressional clerk in the 1800s and the introduction of the telegraph set a young country on a new trajectory.
The war in Ukraine has triggered an outpouring of sympathy for the plight of the people under attack, but also a surprising amount of isolationist sentiment. It’s not the first time this has happened.