Articles by Lila Thulin

Attorney, author, scholar and reverend Pauli Murray, pictured here on December 22, 1976

LGBTQ+ Pride

The Trailblazing, Multifaceted Activism of Lawyer-Turned-Priest Pauli Murray

New documentary tells the story of a Black and LGBTQ thinker who helped lay the legal groundwork for fighting gender- and race-based discrimination

Readers Respond to the September 2021 Issue

Your feedback on the 9/11 cover story, the history of the pickup truck and more

An aerial view of the "In America: Remember" installation on the National Mall, which commemorates the nearly 700,000 Americans who've lost their lives to Covid-19.

Covid-19

In D.C., 695,000 Flags—and Counting—Memorialize the Americans Who Have Died of Covid-19

Created by artist Suzanne Brennan Firstenberg, the installation covers the National Mall in white pennants featuring handwritten dedications to the dead

Rasha Alqahtani, an 18-year-old from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, won a third award in the behavioral and social sciences category of the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair for her prototype of a video game feature to assess anxiety. In addition to her STEM research, Alqahtani is a poet and artist.

Innovation for Good

This Teenager Is Developing a Video Game That Assesses Your Mental Health

Rasha Alqahtani, an 18-year-old from Saudi Arabia, is determined to help her peers learn about their anxiety—in the wildly popular setting of 'Minecraft'

One of the Smithsonian Institution's most visited artifacts is the 209-year-old Star-Spangled Banner, the inspiration for the National Anthem.

A New Summer Tradition, a Three-Week 'Civic Season,' Asks Americans to Reflect on the Past and Future

Museums are inviting Americans to embrace the national story from its sins to its successes as a stepping stone towards a better future

Some facets of the 1918 influenza pandemic echo today's crisis: There were mask mandates, campaigns against spitting and pleas for people to cover their mouths, and more than half a million Americans died. The decade that followed the pandemic, however, was marked by social change and economic prosperity—for some.

What Caused the Roaring Twenties? Not the End of a Pandemic (Probably)

As the U.S. anticipates a vaccinated summer, historians say measuring the impact of the 1918 influenza on the uproarious decade that followed is tricky

A panel of the "Birthing Rock" petroglyphs in Moab, Utah, prior to its defacement with racist and obscene etchings

Racist Phrase Found Etched on Native American Petroglyphs in Utah

Unidentified criminals wrote "white power" and obscenities over thousand-year-old Indigenous markings on "Birthing Rock" in Moab

Jennifer Doudna, a Nobel Prize recipient for her work on the gene-editing tool CRISPR, and the "life sciences revolution" are the dual subjects of Walter Isaacson's latest biography.

How Scientist Jennifer Doudna Is Leading the Next Technological Revolution

A new book from Steve Jobs biographer Walter Isaacson offers an incisive portrait of the gene editing field that is changing modern medicine

An analysis of the genome of the B.1.1.7 variant of the coronavirus overlaid on the CDC's map of different states' genome sequencing rates. Darker-shaded states have processed more genomes (relative to their total case count) than lighter, greener states.

Covid-19

Why the U.S. Is Struggling to Track Coronavirus Variants

A scattered and underfunded effort at genomic sequencing has hindered the country’s ability to detect different forms of the virus

Smithsonian gemologist Barbara Minerva (Kristen Wiig) meets her colleague, Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) in Wonder Woman 1984, which was filmed at three Smithsonian museums.

How 'Wonder Woman 1984' Was Filmed at the Smithsonian

The blockbuster saw the superhero working as a museum anthropologist. But how accurate was its depiction of the Institution at the time?

New Space Force "Guardians" being sworn in.

Space Force Troops Are Now Officially 'Guardians' of the Galaxy

Members of the newest and smallest branch of the military, which turned one this December, will now be known as 'Guardians'

Learn about the underbelly of your neighborhood supermarket, 100-plus uses for beans and more in this year's top food books.

Holiday Gift Guide

The Ten Best Books About Food of 2020

From cookbooks to grocery-store exposés, these new books will tempt palates and fuel curiosity

When Geraldine Ferraro accepted the Democratic party's nomination on July 19, 1984, she became the first woman to be a major party's candidate for vice president.

100 Years of Women at the Ballot Box

How Geraldine Ferraro's 1984 Campaign Broke the Vice-Presidential Glass Ceiling

The charismatic congresswoman from Queens forged a path for women in American politics

In April, people queued at a testing tent in East New York in Brooklyn. COVID-19 rates are highest among black New Yorkers in Kings County.

Race in America

What 'Racism Is a Public Health Issue' Means

Epidemiologist Sharrelle Barber discusses the racial inequalities that exist for COVID-19 and many other health conditions

A vial of remdesivir, an antiviral that has broad-spectrum activity, meaning it works against more than one type of virus. Remdesivir has been authorized for emergency use in the COVID-19 pandemic; it also was used to fight Ebola when there were few treatments available.

Covid-19

Remdesivir Works Against Many Viruses. Why Aren’t There More Drugs Like It?

Antivirals that work against a large number of diverse viruses would help us prepare for new diseases, but creating them is a big biological challenge

Almost a fourth of Americans have shared fake news at one point or another, according to a Pew survey from 2016, so it's important to be skeptical as you're browsing the web or watching TV.

Covid-19

How to Avoid Misinformation About COVID-19

False information about the pandemic is rampant; here’s how experts say you can identify what news to trust and what might be faulty

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Virtual Travel

Smithsonian Channel Has Released 68 Free ‘Aerial America’ Episodes for Your Quarantine Viewing

Do some armchair traveling and see the breathtaking vistas of all 50 states while learning about their histories

The program for the National American Woman Suffrage Association procession in the capital city. This march occurred before the rift between the more moderate NAWSA and the less conciliatory National Woman's Party.

The Thorny Road to the 19th Amendment

Historian Ellen Carol DuBois chronicles the twists and turns of the nearly 75-year-path to securing the vote for women in her new book

The original call for submissions that was mailed out for the 1977 iteration of "What is Feminist Art?"

More Than 40 Years Later, Artists Answer a Still-Relevant Question: What Is Feminist Art?

An exhibition from the Archives of American Art asks artists—and the viewer—to ponder what makes art feminist, and how that definition has evolved

The list includes Artemisia Gentileschi, Wilma Mankiller, Frances Glessner Lee and other Oscar-worthy women.

Based on a True Story

Nine Women Whose Remarkable Lives Deserve the Biopic Treatment

From Renaissance artists to aviation pioneers, suffragists and scientists, these women led lives destined for the silver screen

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