Essay/
Cognition and intelligence
Not so foolish

We are told that we are an irrational tangle of biases, to be nudged any which way. Does this claim stand to reason?

Steven Poole

Essay/
Thinkers and theories
The spirit of history

Hegel’s search for the universal patterns of history revealed a paradox: freedom is coming into being, but is never guaranteed

Terry Pinkard

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Essay/
Film and visual culture
Love isn’t what it was

In a strangely unremarked-upon twist, Disney films have taken to subverting romance and rethinking the happy-ever-afters

Sophus Helle

Essay/
Nations and empires
Scots running amok

As loan sharks, drug smugglers, generals and plant hunters, Scots played a central role in expanding the British Empire

Jessica Hanser

Popular this month

Essay/
History
Muslims of early America

Muslims came to America more than a century before Protestants, and in great numbers. How was their history forgotten?

Sam Haselby

Essay/
Knowledge
Knowledge is crude

Far from being a touchstone of the truth, knowledge is a stone-age concept that harms our dealings with the modern world

David Papineau

Essay/
Thinkers and theories
Susan Sontag was a monster

She took things too seriously. She was difficult and unyielding. That’s why Susan Sontag’s work matters so much even now

Lauren Elkin

Essay/
Medicine
We need worms

You might think they are disgusting. But our war against intestinal worms has damaged our immune systems and mental health

William Parker

Essay/
Animals and humans
For the hate of dogs

We treat pet dogs with such sentimentality while their wild, endangered relatives are feared and persecuted. Why?

Sy Montgomery

Essay/
Beauty and aesthetics
More than skin deep

Beauty is a deeply moral matter that makes kindness, empathy and honesty attractive, while vice warps into ugliness

Panos Paris

Essay/
Astronomy
Monsters in the dark

The Universe’s biggest galaxies could hold the key to the birth of the cosmos. Why are these behemoths so hard to find?

Matthew Bothwell

Essay/
Animals and humans
American bull

The story of American beef is like the story of the nation as a whole: a mashup of history and myth, bloody and contested

Joshua Specht

Essay/
Knowledge
Knowledge is crude

Far from being a touchstone of the truth, knowledge is a stone-age concept that harms our dealings with the modern world

David Papineau