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A Teenie Harris photo of an African-American man enjoying a popsicle.

How Did Cool Become Such a Big Deal?

Cool is still cool. The word, the emotional style, and that whole flavor of cultural cachet remains ascendant after more than half a century.

Man on bicycle being interviewed by Walter Isaacson

Picture of a Humanist

There is something of Walter Isaacson in the people he writes about.

Nighttime "stroll" painting by Archibald Motley, "Black Belt"

Block Party

Archibald Motley painted African Americans having a good time

This woodblock print by Yoshu Shuen depicts a reception given by the Meiji Emper

The Odyssey of Ulysses S. Grant

After winning the Civil War and living in the White House, he decided to see the world.

Albert Einstein in 1920s

The Face of Science

How Albert Einstein became a celebrity

Robert Frost as a young man

Verse and Adverse

The letters of Robert Frost invite us to reconsider the man behind the poetry.

A young Eudora Welty standing against a wall.

The Quiet Greatness of Eudora Welty

Even toward the end of her life, the writer revealed a youthful zest for life and art.

Masked New York City policeman, 1918

The Devastation of 1918

An online encyclopedia created at the University of Michigan includes thousands of documents detailing the U.S. response to the 1918 flu crisis.

Miller lanceolate point

The First Americans

What we think we know about the arrival of Homo sapiens on this continent.

Hannah Arendt, 1944

The Trial of Hannah Arendt

She caused a furor when she coined “the banality of evil” to describe mindless acts of Nazi horror.