The Authors We’re Ashamed To Read

In the days preceding Amazon, finding the exact book you sought proved difficult. You may have kept track of library release dates, used bookstore inventories, or even the personal stashes of family and friends. More often than not, however, you’d find yourself amidst the stacks of one of literature’s metropoleis, the commercial havens that promise uncracked spines for the low price of $25.99, available in hardcover only.

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A Picture Of Sex Education In The United States

Teens are having sex. Among high school students surveyed in 2015 by the CDC, 41 percent had engaged in sexual intercourse. Thirty percent of all surveyed students had sex in the last 3 months, and out of those, 43 percent did not use a condom and 14 percent did not use any method to prevent pregnancy whatsoever. Though teen pregnancy rates are the lowest they’ve been in years, the United States still has the highest teen birth rate of any developed nation.

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How Spiritual Leaders Hijack Physics To Make Us Believe

In a secular culture like ours, religion and spirituality are a much harder sell than they once were. Science has continually poked holes in much of religious thinking, and more people self identify as Atheists than ever before.

It makes sense, then, that some spiritual leaders are leaning on science to justify their spiritual lines of thinking. The field that bears the most of that weight? Quantum mechanics.

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The Rise Of Hometown Horror

The small horrors seeping from the corners of everyday life have been the subject of storytellers for decades. From Alfred Hitchcock’s voyeuristic Rear Window to Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl, the inexplicable mysteries of our typically mundane existence have always had their teeth in readers and moviegoers. While most of us love a good thriller, the horror genre itself has gained popularity among those who might not consider themselves lovers of the macabre. Everyday people are starting to love horror, and major networks and movie studios have taken note.

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Why Is 13 Unlucky? Ask The Infamous Judas Iscariot.

As I entered the double front door of my apartment building on a rainy Saturday, I was thinking only of escaping the torrential winds of New York. I trudged squeaky boots up what always feels like a million stairs before taking note of an apartment I had not noticed before. Apartment 12A. I craned my head around the stairwell to check on the apartments above and below – 12 and 14. In a move typical of apartment buildings and hotels alike, the number 13 had been skipped. This small detail stirred a bit of wonderment within me. When did 13 become an unlucky number?

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Skins UK & The Need For Real Teens On TV

The British television show Skins aired its first episode ten years ago tomorrow. The show – which followed a group of students in Bristol through late high school and early college – was gritty, provocative, and bold. It was lauded for its portrayal of teens as both complex and flawed, and its ability to maintain a lighthearted and comedic tone despite its somewhat dark subject matter. Mental illness, teen pregnancy, eating disorders, and substance abuse were only a few of the important issues the show dealt with.

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Genre Switching & The Question Of Artist Identity

When 2016 was good to us, it was really good. Though I was underwhelmed by many of the albums released throughout the year, we truly were blessed with some real gems: Beyoncé’s Lemonade, Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo, Bon Iver’s 22, A Million, The 1975’s I Like It When You Sleep For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It. That said, some of the records we heard this year were not at all what we expected – and I don’t mean they were disappointing because they’d been hyped up for five years, ahem, Frank Ocean. I mean we saw artists bouncing from one genre to another without warning – R&B artists pushing into the canyons of country, rappers crooning soul funk, quiet singer-songwriters tip-toeing into electronica and EDM.

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The Case For Congressional Gender Quotas

On the evening of November 8th, 2016, Hillary Clinton conceded to Donald Trump, ending her campaign for the office of President of the United States. Millions of women looked on as Clinton made strides toward gender equality, instilling the hope that there soon might be a female President of the United States. Conversations about feminism in the United States were stirring, stimulated by a variety of celebrities and public figures in the preceding few years. Singer Beyoncé Knowles made her famous statement at the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards, plastering the word “feminist” behind her as she sang “Flawless,” a song featuring samples from the work of Nigerian writer and feminist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

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Branding The President

It is a blustery, bright January day in 1961. Dressed in a pillbox hat and a pale beige fur-trimmed Oleg Cassini coat, a woman stands beside her husband, grinning at the crowds before her. The coat’s oversized buttons and pockets indicate a certain level of Hollywood drama, but the neck is trimmed with sable, a weightless, silken, and noble fur – an indicator of class and luxury.

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Ambigrams, Secret Symbols, & Human Nature

While researching the history of a word or a concept, very strange things can happen. One such effect is the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon (scientifically known as frequency bias) – one of the cognitive biases of psychology. It states that once you look into something, you become more aware of its existence, and it seems to appear more frequently in your everyday life than it did before. Another effect is that your brain starts making connections to things present and past that seem to relate in some way to the thing you’ve just researched. Other times, it seems that the thing you’re looking into has no recorded history at all–and you’re left to search the deep pockets of Reddit and chat forums for answers.

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