History

The Nineteenth-Century Origins of Internationalism

G. John Ikenberry— Liberal internationalism was born in the nineteenth century, and by the century’s end it had begun to crystallize into a recognizable school of thought—a distinctive cluster of ideas and agendas for organizing international relations. The intellectual roots of this tradition trace back to the Enlightenment and the

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The Battle for Syria

Christopher Phillips— The Syrian civil war is the greatest human disaster of the twenty-first century. Since conflict broke out in 2011, it is estimated that over 500,000 have been killed and 1.9 million wounded. Over 5 million have fled the country and 6.6 million more are internally displaced, more than

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Witch Villages and Cursing Wells

Thomas Waters— Witchcraft differed from one region to the next, but it also varied over much shorter distances. Certain desolate, inhospitable or generally ominous locations were known as the favoured haunts of witches. Prolley Moor in Shropshire was a notorious meeting place for practitioners of the dark arts, as was

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Lakota America

Pekka Hamalainen— In 1776 two nations were born in North America. One was conceived in Philadelphia, the other in the Black Hills of South Dakota, and they were separated by more than seventeen hundred miles. Exactly a century later those two nations would clash violently along the Little Bighorn River

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More than Meets the Eye: American Furniture at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

Alexandra Alevizatos Kirtley— After several years of research and writing, the first publication on the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s revered collection of American furniture dating from 1650 to 1840 has arrived. Focusing only on the highlights—297 to be exact—this catalogue is debuting long after the publication of similar volumes on

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The Warm South

Robert Holland— On 16 August 1822, it took Lord George Byron, his friend Edward Trelawny, a gaggle of Tuscan soldiers and a local health official an hour to find the spot on the beach near Viareggio where Percy Bysshe Shelley’s corpse had been left two weeks before in the burning

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Reflections on Africans in Gothic Sculpture, part 3

Erasure, Submission, Apotheosis Jacqueline E. Jung — Though hardly numerous, images of African men – often dressed in military garb, and always acting on behalf of established institutional powers – played vital roles in the sculptural programs of French and German Gothic cathedrals. At Magdeburg, St. Maurice was a well-armed

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Four Approaches to Conspiracy Theories

Stephen Bates— Conspiracy theories are much in the news, most notably the QAnon tangle of claims about the Deep State, child-trafficking, and cannibalism. Although the details change, allegations of secret machinations have been a staple of American politics since before the Revolution. Some are harmless entertainment, but others foster bigotry,

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Beethoven’s ‘Last Musical Thought’

Laura Tunbridge— In 1840, the Berlin publisher Heinrich Schlesinger published a short piano piece as the Dernière pensée musicale de Louis van Beethoven. It was not, in fact, Beethoven’s “last musical thought”; it was not even the first time it had been published. The same music had appeared in a supplement

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Richard Oakes and the Takeover of Fort Lawton

Kent Blansett— On Sunday at 3 a.m. Richard Oakes and ninety other members of UIAT [United Indians of All Tribes] assembled at a rendezvous point in downtown Seattle. A veteran and leader of the Alcatraz takeovers, Oakes must have been transported back to the three attempts it had taken IAT

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