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Fifty Shades of Meh

New research refutes the notion that reading the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy strongly impacts women’s sexual behavior.

The Law Won

Model April

The Imagined Sex Worker

The stigma against black sex workers can reinforce stigmas against all black women and all sex workers.

Quick Studies


All-Girls Schools Don’t Make Girls More Competitive

Parents, not educational setting, may be the key.

Book Reviews


Zombies in the Quad: The Trouble With Elite Education

William Deresiewicz’s new book, Excellent Sheep, is in part, he says, a letter to his younger, more privileged self.

In the Classroom


Um, Why Are These Professors Creeping on My Facebook Page?

The ethics of student-teacher “intimacy”—on campus and on social media.



Homeless on Purpose

The latest entry in a series of interviews about subculture in America.



Why Original Artworks Move Us More Than Reproductions

Researchers present evidence that hand-created artworks convey an almost magical sense of the artist’s essence.

But It's Just a Game


Pulling Punches: Why Sports Leagues Treat Most Offenders With Leniency

There’s a psychological explanation for the weak punishment given to Ray Rice before a video surfaced that made a re-evaluation unavoidable.

Quick Studies


Do Conspiracy Theorists Feed on Unsuspecting Internet Trolls?

Not literally, but debunkers and satirists do fuel conspiracy theorists’ appetites.



The Grateful Dig: An Archaeologist Excavates a Tie-Dyed Modern Stereotype

What California’s senior state archaeologist discovered in the ruins of a hippie commune.

What Makes You So Smart?


What Makes You So Smart, Brilliant 12-Year-Old?

Charles Wang is going to rule the world.

In the Classroom


A Law Professor Walks Into a Creative Writing Workshop

One academic makes the case for learning how to write.

Quick Studies


3-D Movies Aren’t That Special

Psychologists find that 3-D doesn’t have any extra emotional impact.

The World Wide Web


Online Harassment of Women Isn’t Just a Gamer Problem

By blaming specific subcultures, we ignore a much larger and more troubling social pathology.

Quick Studies


In Soccer as in Art, Motifs Matter

A new study suggests a way to quantitatively measure a team’s style through its pass flow. It may become another metric used to evaluate potential recruits.

Culture Essays


Defining Michael Brown

How Harriet Beecher Stowe and D.W. Griffith still define the ways in which America talks about black men.



Why the NFL’s Drug Policies Are One Big Fumble

Enforcing blanket abstinence for some alcohol offenders and harshly penalizing marijuana use are hardly 21st-century solutions.

In the Classroom


Back to School in Ferguson

One former student remembers the classrooms of this now-divided Missouri town were filled with important discussions of the Civil Rights Movement back in the 1970s. What happened?

In the Classroom


Affirmative Action Is Still Needed in Higher Education

When it comes to college admissions, focus on the game, not the players.

Quick Studies

reading education

Charter-Style Overhauls May Not Improve School Reading Deficiencies

While math skills improve, proficiency in reading and writing remains the same.

Sociological Images


New Orleans Voodoo: Before and After Hurricane Katrina

Practitioners of different voodoo traditions are coming together to form new communities after the hurricane devastated their numbers.

Book Reviews


A Tale of Two Ways to Hate Cities

Bipartisan urban loathing.

We Read It


The Singularity Could Destroy Us All

In his new book, Nick Bostrom charts the near-inevitable rise of superintelligence. The future does not look bright.

Quick Studies


When Science Finds Nothing, It Often Publishes Nothing

Researchers are much less likely to report null results, and that’s not a good thing.

Sociological Images


Professors’ Pet Peeves

Ten things to avoid in your classrooms this year.

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On the Hunt for Fake Facebook Likes

A new study finds ways to uncover Facebook Like farms.

All-Girls Schools Don’t Make Girls More Competitive

Parents, not educational setting, may be the key.

For Charitable Products, Sex Doesn’t Sell

Sexy women may turn heads, but for pro-social and charitable products, they won't change minds.

Carbon Taxes Really Do Work

A new study shows that taxing carbon dioxide emissions could actually work to reduce greenhouse gases without any negative effects on employment and revenues.

Savor Good Times, Get Through the Bad Ones—With Categories

Ticking off a category of things to do can feel like progress or a fun time coming to an end.

The Big One

One in three tourists to Jamaica reports getting harassed; half of them are hassled to buy drugs. September/October 2014 new-big-one-4

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