Books

Icaria was guided by a single principle: “to each following his needs, from each following his strengths,” as Cabet put it.

The 19th-Century Novel That Inspired a Communist Utopia on the American Frontier

The Icarians thought they could build a paradise, but their project was marked by failure almost from the start

Why can't machines process CO2 the way trees do?

Why Can't Machines Process CO2 Like Trees? And More Questions From Our Readers

You’ve got questions. We’ve got experts

Smithsonian's picks for the best books about food of 2023 include Invitation to a Banquet, For the Culture: Black Women and Femmes in Food and More Than Cake.

The Ten Best Books About Food of 2023

Travel to Rome, Alaska, West Africa and beyond with this year’s best cookbooks, memoirs and historic deep dives

Smithsonian's picks for the best history books of 2023 include King: A Life, The Sisterhood and The Wager.

The Ten Best History Books of 2023

Our favorite titles of the year resurrect forgotten histories and illuminate how the United States ended up where it is today

A drawing of a musical lion from 14th-century France

Why Is Medieval Art So Weird?

Titled "Weird Medieval Guys," a new book examines illustrations of armless frogs, human-sized snails and more

Fred McDowell, 1965, Como, Mississippi

Meet the Man Who Recorded the Music of America's Front Porches and Backyard Parties

Chris Strachwitz, founder of Arhoolie Records, crisscrossed the United States photographing and recording musicians where they played

The Aftel Archive of Curious Scents has been drawing commercial perfumers with a nose for aromas, gardeners, cooks and others since 2017.

This California Museum Is Home to Hundreds of Nature's Scents

Perfumer Mandy Aftel's spellbinding collection of rare essences and artifacts is on display at the Aftel Archive of Curious Scents in Berkeley

Charlotte Brontë’s attraction to the strange and horrific was an early vehicle for her love of storytelling.

An Early Charlotte Brontë Story Speaks to the Author's Lifelong Fascination With the Supernatural

The 1830 account details an eerie encounter with a stranger who predicted the death of the writer's father

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How the Osage Changed Martin Scorsese’s Mind

“Killers of the Flower Moon” sets a new standard in its nuanced portrait of Osage life. Decades of prior films about Native Americans didn't even try

Norwegian writer Jon Fosse is the recipient of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Literature.

Jon Fosse Wins the Nobel Prize in Literature for Work Probing 'Human Anxiety and Ambivalence'

The dramatist and author is the first-ever laureate in the prize's history to write in Nynorsk, a written form of the Norwegian language

The New English Canaan by Thomas Morton criticized the Puritan government in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

A Brief History of Banned Books in America

Attempts to restrict what kids in school can read are on the rise. But American book banning started with the Puritans, 140 years before the United States

John F. Kennedy and Jackie Kennedy ride the presidential limousine through the streets of Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963. Texas Governor John B. Connally Jr. is seated in front of them.

Ex-Secret Service Agent's Account of JFK's Assassination Could Cast Doubt on 'Lone Gunman' Theory

Paul Landis' new book refutes the idea that a single bullet injured both the president and Texas Governor John B. Connally Jr.

Historian Peter Mancall says New English Canaan is “not very long” and “not very well written,” but holds immense value in what it says about the nation’s founding.

How America's First Banned Book Survived and Became an Anti-Authoritarian Icon

The Puritans outlawed Thomas Morton's "New English Canaan" because it was critical of the society they were building in colonial New England

The statue of the Little Prince outside Villa Albertine’s Fifth Avenue headquarters

New 'Little Prince' Statue Sits Near Central Park and Gazes Up at the Stars

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry wrote and illustrated much of the beloved novella while living in the city in the 1940s

Boatmen off North Sentinel Island in 1998

A Century Before the Residents of a Remote Island Killed a Christian Missionary, Their Predecessors Resisted the British Empire

When a white clergyman tried to punish captive Andamanese for their supposed misdeeds, they slapped him back

English writer Virginia Woolf in June 1926

Virginia Woolf Scorned Fashion but Couldn't Escape It

A new exhibition investigates the Bloomsbury Group's relationship with clothing, accessories and sartorial social norms

Chairs sit ready for the attendees of the ceremony recognizing 2020 and 2021 Pulitzer Prize winners.

Why the Pulitzer Prizes Are Expanding Eligibility to Non-U.S. Citizens

The prestigious awards will soon be open to permanent residents and those who call the U.S. their "longtime primary home"

Isabella Bird ascended the 14,259-foot-tall Longs Peak, now part of Rocky Mountain National Park.

Following British Explorer Isabella Bird's Footsteps Through the Rockies, 150 Years Later

The intrepid Victorian-era author proved that a lady’s life could be in the mountains, and I am forever grateful for that

Ernest Hemingway and his wife, Mary Welsh, on a trip to Kenya in 1952

Ernest Hemingway and His Wife Survived Two Plane Crashes Just One Day Apart

The novelist recounted the harrowing ordeal in a letter, which just sold for $237,055 at auction

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The Revolutionary Influence of the First English Children’s Novel

"The History of Little Goody Two-Shoes" told the tale of a bold heroine who forged her own path

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