Pam Weintraub
Senior Editor, Aeon+Psyche

Pam is an editor and writer specialising in psychology, neuroscience and the sciences. She has previously worked as executive and features editor at Discover, where her acquisitions were widely anthologised and received numerous national awards; a consulting editor at Psychology Today; and in a range of roles at Omni magazine, from senior editor and editor-at-large to founding editor of Omni online. She is author of 16 books on medicine, psychology and lifestyle, including Cure Unknown: Inside the Lyme Epidemic, which won the American Medical Writers Association book award in 2009. She can be found on Twitter @pam3001.

Written by Pam Weintraub

At Wounded Knee, South Dakota, 1984. Photo by Pierre Perrin/Gamma-Rapho/Getty

Essay/
Genetics
Haunted by history

War, famine and persecution inflict profound changes on bodies and brains. Could these changes persist over generations?

Pam Weintraub

Edited by Pam Weintraub

Stinson Beach, California, 1973. Photo by Elliott Erwitt/Magnum

Essay/
Animals and humans
The joy of being animal

Human exceptionalism is dead: for the sake of our own happiness and the planet we should embrace our true animal nature

Melanie Challenger

Photo by Steve Forrest/Panos Pictures

Essay/
Ageing and death
The gender of dementia

Are women really at greater risk from dementia? Until we reckon with social roles and inequalities, it’s impossible to say

Kate Gregorevic

The wiring diagram of a human brain revealing connections. Courtesy of the consortium of The Human Connectome Project

Essay/
Neuroscience
Am I my connectome?

Each human brain possesses a unique, intricate pattern of 86 billion neurons. If science can map it, immortality beckons

Phil Jaekl

Participants in the annual Twins Days Festival parade in Twinsburg, Ohio, 4 August 2012. Photo by Lisa Wiltse/Corbis/Getty

Essay/
Genetics
The science of terrible men

The pioneers of social genetics were racists and eugenicists: should we give up on the science they founded altogether?

Kathryn Paige Harden

At the Maison Blanche psychiatric hospital in Paris, 1954. Photo by Jean-Philippe Charbonnier/Gamma-Rapho/Getty

Essay/
History of science
Shocked

With evidence for efficacy so thin, and the stakes so high, why is ‘electroshock’ therapy still a mainstay of psychiatry?

John Read

Sehnsucht (‘Longing’) by the Nederlands Dans Theater at Sadler’s Wells, London, in 2014. Photo by Leo Mason/Popperfoto/Getty

Essay/
Dance and theatre
To the core

A devastating loss can shatter the façade we put up for others, exposing our deepest, rawest self. A work of art can do the same

Julia F Christensen

An Orca called Morgan in the Dolphinarium in Harderwijk, the Netherlands, September 2011. Morgan was subsequently transferred to the Loro Parque zoo in Tenerife, Spain. Photo by Marten Van Dijl/AFP/Getty

Essay/
Oceans and water
They are prisoners

Captive orcas are tormented by boredom and family separation, but they cannot be simply released. What’s the solution?

Lori Marino

Elizabeth I of England (c1588), artist unknown. One of three known as the Armada portraits and on display in Woburn Abbey. Courtesy Wikipedia

Essay/
Cognition and intelligence
How to be a genius

I travelled the world and trawled the archive to unearth the hidden lessons from history’s most brilliant people

Craig Wright

Charles Boyer plays opposite Ingrid Bergman in the 1944 film adaptation of Patrick Hamilton’s novel Gaslight. Photo by Getty

Essay/
Mental health
Turn off the gaslight

The skilled manipulator casts a shadow of doubt over everything that you feel or think. Therapy can bring the daylight in

Ramani Durvasula

Apollo 11 flight crew in biological isolation garments shortly after splashdown and about to be picked up and transferred to the USS Hornet in July 1969. Photo courtesy NASA

Essay/
Space exploration
A lunar pandemic

In the 1960s, NASA went to huge expense to contain possible pathogens from the Moon. What can we learn from the attempt?

Dagomar Degroot

Photo by Ascent Media/Getty

Essay/
Family life
Estranged

When feeling good about ourselves matters more than filial duty, cutting off our parents comes to seem like a valid choice

Joshua Coleman

The boxer Muhammad Ali with his daughter Laila outside the 5th Street Gym in Miami, 1980. Photo by Brian Morgan/Popperfoto/Getty

Essay/
Family life
The biology of dads

The bodies and brains of fathers, not just mothers, are transformed through the love and labour of raising a child

James K Rilling

Three-year-old twins Estaban and Salome Hernandez at home with their parents Fabio and Mabel, 15 March 2020. The Hernandez family were awaiting the result of the Washington DC school lottery which determines which school they will attend. Photo by Michael S Williamson/Washington Post/Getty

Essay/
Genetics
The genes we’re dealt

The new field of social genomics can be used by progressives to combat racial inequality or by conservatives to excuse it

Erik Parens

The French aviation pioneers Antoine de Saint-Exupéry and Henri Guillaumet. Photo by Roger-Violett/Topfoto

Essay/
Cognition and intelligence
On the same wavelength

The urge to align our minds and emotions with those we care for, whether they are near or far, makes our species unique

Hayden Kee

Photo by Paul Zinken/dpa-Zentralbild/ZB/Getty

Essay/
Illness and disease
The wisdom of pandemics

Viruses are active agents, existing within rich lifeworlds. A safe future depends on understanding this evolutionary story

David Waltner-Toews

Lambari, Brazil, August 2010. Photo by Steve McCurry/Magnum

Essay/
Cognition and intelligence
The science of wisdom

Psychological science can now measure and nurture wisdom, superseding the speculations of philosophy and religion

Igor Grossmann

The snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus). Photo by Robbie George/The National Geographic Image Collection

Essay/
Ecology and environmental sciences
Being eaten

The fear of becoming a meal is a powerful evolutionary force that shapes brains, behaviour and entire ecosystems

Lesley Evans Ogden

From The Moomins and the Great Flood (1945) by Tove Jansson. ©Moomin Characters™

Essay/
Stories and literature
Pippi and the Moomins

The antics in postwar Nordic children’s books left propaganda and prudery behind. We need this madcap spirit more than ever

Richard W Orange

Namanga, Arusha Region, Tanzania. February 2018. © Thomas Dworzak/Magnum Photos with support from the Pulitzer Center

Essay/
Family life
How parents are made

Attachment therapy helps us recognise and heal our childhood wounds so we can be free to become good parents ourselves

Juli Fraga

A polio patient receives treatment via an ‘iron lung’, the nurse adjusting the flow of air pressure. United States c1955. Photo by Three Lions Inc/Getty

Essay/
Medicine
Life and breath

There’s a strange, and deeply human, story behind how we taught machines to breathe for critically ill patients

Sarah Ruth Bates

Detail of Sunrise III (1936-37), by Arthur Garfield Dove. Gift of Katherine S Dreier to the Collection Société Anonyme/Yale University Art Gallery

Essay/
Evolution
Origin story

Perched on the cusp between biology and chemistry, the start of life on Earth is an event horizon we struggle to see beyond

Natalie Elliot

Detail from La Malade (1892) by Felix Vallotton. Courtesy Wikipedia

Essay/
Illness and disease
No rest

In the 19th century, the rest cure tested women’s sanity. Today, it challenges cherished myths about work and productivity

Alicia Puglionesi

The First Cloud (1888) by William Quiller Orchardson. Courtesy the Tate Gallery/Wikipedia

Essay/
Love and friendship
Forgive and be free

Hurts – your own or those done to you – keep you stuck. Forgiveness therapy can help you gain perspective and move on

Nathaniel Wade

Viewed from the International Space Station, stars glitter in the night sky above the Earth’s atmospheric glow. Photo courtesy Nasa

Essay/
Cosmology
Big space

Our planet is a tiny porthole, looking over a cosmic sea. Can we learn what lies beyond our own horizons of perception?

Katie Mack

Detail from Sunset (Zarathustra), 1917 by Christian Rohlfs. Landesmuseum Oldenburg, Germany. Photo by AKG

Essay/
Stories and literature
The inward gaze

In Hermann Hesse’s novels, as in his life, self-discovery walked a tightrope between deep insights and profound solipsism

M M Owen

A group gather to watch another victim taken to a hospital during the 1956 polio epidemic in Chicago, Illinois. Photo by Francis Miller/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty

Essay/
Illness and disease
Stealth infections

From the Black Death to polio, the most dangerous pathogens have moved silently, transmitted by apparently healthy people

Wendy Orent

A section of the Andromeda galaxy M31, from the largest and most detailed image ever taken with the Hubble telescope. The full image shows more than 100 million stars stretching across more than 40,000 light years. Photo courtesy NASA, ESA, J Dalcanton, B F Williams, L C Johnson (University of Washington), the PHAT team and R Gendler

Essay/
Astronomy
Does dark matter exist?

Dark matter is the most ubiquitous thing physicists have never found: it’s time to consider alternative explanations

Ramin Skibba

Two girls with their Cabbage Patch dolls. New York City, 1986. Photo by Leonard Freed/Magnum

Essay/
Mood and emotion
The bittersweet madeleine

It is a guilty pleasure and undergirds nationalist bombast, yet nostalgia for the past can help propel us into the future

Elizabeth Svoboda

Photo by Werner Bischof/Magnum Photos

Essay/
Self-improvement
Beware of lateral thinking

De Bono’s popular theory is textbook pseudoscience: unsound, untested and derivative of real (unacknowledged) research

Antonio Melechi

Recent comments