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From California to the Midwest, examining the perils of industrial farming and the risk to food

Aug 12, 2020
An excerpt from "Perilous Bounty: The Looming Collapse of American Farming and How We Can Prevent It."
A farmer plows a field in Centreville, Maryland. The primary sources of America's food supply face ecological calamity.
Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

"We don't waste fellowships on women": Microbiologist Rita Colwell on sexism in academia

Microbiologist Rita Colwell, the first female director of the National Science Foundation, talks about her experiences facing sexism in the world of science.
Scientist and professor Rita Colwell giving a talk at World Water Week in Stockholm in 2010.
Bertil Ericson/Getty Images

'America is an old house': Isabel Wilkerson on race and caste in America

Aug 5, 2020
In her new book, “Caste,” Pulitzer-Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson compares America to an “old house” where “the work is never done, and you don’t expect it to be.”
"When people live in an old house, they come to adjust to [its] idiosyncrasies and outright dangers," Isabel Wilkerson writes in "Caste."
Lee Celano/AFP via Getty Images

How one of the U.S.'s most iconic companies nearly flickered out

Jul 21, 2020
Author Tom Gryta explains how General Electric's place in the economy fell so quickly.
The logo at the entrance of GE's aviation engine overhaul facility in Brazil in 2016.
Yasuyoshi Chiba/Getty Images

How a stained glass business is holding up in a shaky economy

Jul 9, 2020
A family business that's endured for five generations figures out new ways to stay relevant.
Stained glass artwork hangs at Judson Studios in South Pasadena, California.
Bennett Purser/Marketplace

The complicated history of McDonald's and Black America

Jul 6, 2020
Author Marcia Chatelain examines the fast-food chain's relationship with its Black franchisees and consumers.
Black Lives Matter protesters march past a Philadelphia McDonald's restaurant.
ela/Getty Images

Could a building extend your lifespan?

Jun 24, 2020
An excerpt from "The Great Indoors: The Surprising Science of How Buildings Shape our Behavior, Health and Happiness."
The exterior of the concept design home "Reversible Destiny Lofts MITAKA: In Memory of Helen Keller" in Tokyo, Japan.
Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images

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How a forgotten 1965 law paved the way for today's battles over immigration

Jun 23, 2020
Author Jia Lynn Yang describes how a law meant to maintain the country's white racial majority led to more diversity.
The sun sets behind the Statue of Liberty, an iconic symbol of welcome.
Angela Weiss/Getty Images

How Japan's superfans taught the world to love pop culture

Jun 17, 2020
Author Matt Alt describes how Japan's pop culture, and its superfans, shaped sensibilities the world over.
A shop in New York celebrates Hello Kitty's 45th birthday in 2019. Japanese pop culture is known far and wide.
Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images

Soap saves countless lives every year. Here's how it was invented

May 25, 2020
Cody Cassidy, author of "Who Ate the First Oyster?" said the inventor of soap had no idea about its life-saving potential.
More soap use can save lives, the World Health Organization says.
Mike Coppola/Getty Images