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Essay/History

Resist or collaborate?

The Nazis have occupied France. It’s easy to condemn the collaborators. But be honest: what would you really do?

Robert Gildea

Essay/Politics & Government

Democracy needs politeness

Autocrats shouted, cursed, and bullied, while American revolutionaries used politeness as a tool of radical politics

Steven Bullock

Video/Ecology & Environmental Sciences

How a tiny group of insects escaped extinction by hiding in a bush for 80 years

20 minutes

Idea/War & Conflict

Wars are not won by military genius or decisive battles

Cathal J Nolan

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Essay/History

The taboo of menstruation

All around the world, and throughout history, women have been shamed, sequestered, and medicalised for bleeding regularly

Janie Hampton

Idea/Ethics

It is sometimes right to fight in an unjust war

Victor Tadros

Essay/War & Conflict

The legend of the Legion

His cap is bleached as white as the bones of a Saharan camel. Is the romance of the French Foreign Legion a cult of death?

Robert Twigger

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Essay/History

A much-maligned Mughal

The great king Aurangzeb is among the most hated men in Indian history. A historian claims he’s been unjustly demonised

Audrey Truschke

Video/War & Conflict

‘Semper paratus’ – how the organisation of the Roman army made it always ready for war

3 minutes

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Idea/History

A nation apologises for wrongdoing: is that a category mistake?

Danielle Celermajer

Video/History

War, conflict, bloodshed, upheaval or: how we got to Great Britain

7 minutes

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Essay/Stories & Literature

The real Casanova

His name is synonymous with serial seduction but Casanova's memoirs reveal a man greater than the sum of his ‘conquests’

Laurence Bergreen

Idea/History

Palmyra’s ruins can rebuild our relationship with history

Erich Hatala Matthes

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Essay/History

The new authoritarians

Last century’s dictators wanted to reinvent their subjects as ‘new men’. This century’s strongmen just don’t care. Why?

Holly Case

Essay/History

What is global history now?

Historians cheered globalism with work about cosmopolitans and border-crossing, but the power of place never went away

Jeremy Adelman

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Essay/Art

Show me the Monet

How wealthy Americans grew to appreciate the French Impressionist painter – as an artist but also as a financial asset

Ross King

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Essay/Economics

End of a golden age

Unprecedented growth marked the era from 1948 to 1973. Economists might study it forever, but it can never be repeated. Why?

Marc Levinson

Essay/History

The Masada mystery

Have archaeologists proven the ancient tale of mass suicide in the Judaean desert or twisted science for political end?

Eric H Cline

Essay/Stories & Literature

Sex and death in Homer

Why would Odysseus dump a hot nymph? Or toyboys lust after his wife Penelope? Unveiling the erotic mysteries of the Odyssey

C D C Reeve

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Essay/History

How Europe became so rich

In a time of great powers and empires, just one region of the world experienced extraordinary economic growth. How?

Joel Mokyr

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Essay/Philosophy of Mind

Telling memories

Jewish émigrés from the former Soviet Union tell inconsistent stories. What does this say about the nature of memory?

Helen Haft

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Essay/Politics & Government

Fire, hatred and speed!

The glamour, bullying and violence of the libertarian alt-Right has a direct political ancestor, and it’s not Nazi Germany

Jay Griffiths

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Idea/Demography & Migration

Solving the mystery of the Druze – a 2,000-year-old odyssey

Eran Elhaik

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Essay/Religion

Christians were strangers

How an obscure oriental cult in a corner of Roman Palestine grew to become the dominant religion of the Western world

Michael Kulikowski

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Idea/History

‘European culture’ is an invented tradition

Benjamin G Martin

Essay/History

Drugs du jour

LSD in the ’60s; ecstasy in the ’80s; ‘smart’ drugs today: how we get high reflects the desires and fears of our times

Cody Delistraty

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Idea/Politics & Government

Sovereignty can be bought and sold like a commodity

Steven Press

Video/History

A day in the life of Auschwitz today is a mix of history, tourism and prayer

7 minutes

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Idea/Demography & Migration

How refugees have the power to change the society they join

Alejandra Dubcovsky

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Idea/War & Conflict

The Syrian seed bank that keeps going despite the war

Courtney Fullilove