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Rituals and celebrations
Divine transports

Whether via music, dance or prayer, the trance state was key to human evolution, forging society around the transcendent

Mark Vernon

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Thinkers and theories
How to be an Epicurean

A philosophy that values innocent pleasure, human warmth and the rewards of creative endeavour. What’s not to like?

Catherine Wilson

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Human evolution
Suspicion makes us human

Conspiracy theories have always been with us, powered by an evolutionary drive to survive. How’s that working for us now?

Jan-Willem van Prooijen

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Animals and humans
Turn and live with animals

The slaughterhouse ethic of Soviet and American whalers tells us we must look beyond communism and capitalism to survive

Bathsheba Demuth

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Knowledge
Mistaken

Assuming that another person’s opinions are immune from criticism is not a marker of respect. It is, in fact, dehumanising

Daniel Ward

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Social psychology
Houses of horror

A ragged curtain, a creaking attic, a dark cellar – what explains the architecture of creepiness, and its enduring appeal?

Francis McAndrew

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Nations and empires
Cosmopolitan Ottomans

European colonisation put an abrupt end to political experiments towards a more equal, diverse and ecumenical Arab world

Ussama Makdisi

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Love and friendship
My friend, my self

Female friendship is central to much recent fiction and film. What can it say about the role of relationships in identity?

Susan Bright

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Philosophy of science
But is it science?

Theoretical physicists who say the multiverse exists set a dangerous precedent: science based on zero empirical evidence

Jim Baggott

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Cities
City on mute

When you stare at your phone or use Uber to navigate your neighbourhood, you flatten the rich texture of urban life

Kathleen Vandenberg

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Animals and humans
The pointing ape

How a chimpanzee named Clint trained a psychologist to question human exceptionalism and reconsider the intelligence of apes

David Leavens

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Illness and disease
The best life possible

Living with chronic illness is hard. But there are psychological techniques that make it possible to thrive even when ill

Joseph Trunzo

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Consciousness and altered states
The consciousness illusion

Phenomenal consciousness is a fiction written by our brains to help us track the impact that the world makes on us

Keith Frankish

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Gender and identity
Sex on the brain

Humans, like other mammals, exhibit sex differences in their brains and psychological traits. But what do they signify?

Kevin Mitchell

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Education
The well-educated person

If we took Aristotle seriously we would revolutionise our educational systems to enable citizens to learn throughout life

C D C Reeve

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Consciousness and altered states
The whole-planet view

Psychedelics offer a sense of expansive connectedness, just like astronauts have felt looking back to Earth from space

Rosalind Watts, Sam Gandy & Alex Evans

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Neurodiversity
Against neurodiversity

The movement has good intentions, but it favours the high-functioning and overlooks those who struggle with severe autism

Moheb Costandi