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We Read It


Understanding Money

In How to Speak Money, John Lanchester explains how the monied people talk about their mountains of cash.

Quick Studies


Geography, Race, and LOLs

The online lexicon spreads through racial and ethnic groups as much as it does through geography and other traditional linguistic measures.

Culture Essays


The Long War Between Highbrow and Lowbrow

Despise The Avengers? Loathe the snobs who despise The Avengers? You’re not the first.

Time to Celebrate


Queens of the South

Inside Asheville, North Carolina’s 7th annual Miss Gay Latina pageant.

Inside the Lab

man science

‘Shirtstorm’ and Sexism in Science

Following the recent T-shirt controversy, it’s clear that sexism in science persists. But the forces driving the gender gap are still being debated.

We Read It


A Murder Remembered

In her new book, Alice + Freda Forever: A Murder in Memphis, Alexis Coe takes a humanistic look at a forgotten 1892 crime.



Like a Broken Record

From beer milers to long-distance crawlers, the unending appeal of being No. 1.



High School Music Groups Grapple With Gender Gap

New research finds consistently higher numbers of girls compared to boys in high school bands, orchestras, and choirs.

Book Reviews


The Enduring Allure of Badly Behaved Men—and What It Means for Women

Men, for all Laura Kipnis’ attempts to appear transgressive, is a cautious and old-fashioned book that illustrates male privilege rather than denying it.

Culture Essays


Who Killed Wikipedia?

A hardened corps of volunteer editors is the only force protecting Wikipedia. They might also be killing it.

In the Classroom


Making Classroom Learning Work for More Students

The CEO of Enlearn argues that “generative,” adaptive learning, or a digital curriculum that can adjust in real-time to the needs of individual students and teachers, is the future of education in America. Will his company’s product help keep us competitive?

The Big Screen


Christopher Nolan Is a Bad Editor

The director is so busy preserving all of his scenes that he cuts out crucial, character-building moments.

We Read It


The Book of Mormon, Without the Mormon Part

The Lost Book of Mormon makes a compelling case for including the religious text in the larger American literary canon, but somehow dances around a discussion of what the book actually means to Mormons.

We Read It


What’s the Difference Between Film and Reality?

Your brain isn’t so sure, according to Jeffrey M. Zacks’ new book Flicker.

In the Classroom


How Should Universities Respond to Fake Science?

By banning it—and recognizing that’s very different from restricting academic freedom.



Dislike Abstract Art? Try It Again With a Less-Cluttered Mind

Italian researchers pinpoint a psychological factor that helps determine our reaction to non-representational artworks.



Feelings of Entitlement Boost Creativity

New research finds a link between feeling entitled, valuing innovation, and thinking creatively.

We Read It


Would Science Exist Without Religion?

Though religious thought was key to early scientific breakthroughs, purists tend to erase this part of history. In his new book, What Galileo Saw: Imagining the Scientific Revolution, Lawrence Lipking reminds us of the real story.

Quick Studies


How to Avoid Choking at Your Next Big Game

A team of neuroscientists tried to figure out why we choke and, in the process, stumbled on a practical tip.



The Positive Emotional Impact of Sad Music

A new multinational survey suggests listening to melancholy music has multiple rewards.

In the Picture


In the Picture: SNAP Food Benefits, Birthday Cake, and Walmart

In every issue, we fix our gaze on an everyday photograph and chase down facts about details in the frame.

The Big Screen


The Psychology of a Horror Movie Fan

Scientists have tried to figure out the appeal of axe murderers and creepy dolls, but it mostly remains a spooky mystery.

The Rest of the World


Purity and Self-Mutilation in Thailand

During the nine-day Phuket Vegetarian Festival, a group of chosen ones known as the mah song torture themselves in order to redirect bad luck and misfortune away from their communities and ensure a year of prosperity.

Book Reviews


Tell Us What You Really Think

In politics, are we always just looking out for No. 1?

A weekly roundup of the best of Pacific Standard and, delivered straight to your inbox.

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Attitudes About Race Affect Actions, Even When They Don’t

Tiny effects of attitudes on individuals' actions pile up quickly.

Geography, Race, and LOLs

The online lexicon spreads through racial and ethnic groups as much as it does through geography and other traditional linguistic measures.

Feeling—Not Being—Wealthy Cuts Support for Economic Redistribution

A new study suggests it's relative wealth that leads people to oppose taxing the rich and giving to the poor.

Sufferers of Social Anxiety Disorder, Your Friends Like You

The first study of friends' perceptions suggest they know something's off with their pals but like them just the same.

Standing Up for My Group by Kicking Yours

Members of a minority ethnic group are less likely to express support for gay equality if they believe their own group suffers from discrimination.

The Big One

One in two United States senators and two in five House members who left office between 1998 and 2004 became lobbyists. November/December 2014

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