Lessons From History, Relevant Today: Articles, Essays and Photos
As Evictions Loom, Cities Revisit a Housing Solution From the 70s
Proposals giving tenants the right to purchase their building are being revived as Covid-19 puts renters at risk.
What Happens When a Sheriff Challenges an Eviction Order?
Millions of Americans risk losing their homes when back rent comes due in 2021. These two sheriffs, working decades apart, sought compassionate treatment for renters facing eviction.
The Presidential Debates Will Be Weirdly Educational This Year
Onstage sparring between politicians has been a part of U.S. elections for decades. Covid-19 could change that.
Distance Learning Has Been Part of American Culture for 100 Years. Why Can’t We Get it Right?
Educators and parents have let technology solve school in a pandemic. There’s a better way.
The Pig Who Would Be President
Pigasus the Immortal was announced as the Youth International Party nominee during the 1968 Democratic National Convention. What followed was chaos.
75 Years After Atomic Bombs Shook Japan, Witness Accounts Survive
Researchers have found few health differences between survivors of the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki – known as hibakusha – and other Japanese. But many suffer from lingering psychological effects.
States Are Expanding Access to Absentee Voting Over Concerns About Coronavirus.
The United States has a long history of voting by mail.
Pandemics Go to the Movies
Hollywood's fascination with diseases, infections and disease-infected zombies has a long history.
The Supreme Court Rules on President Trump's Tax Records
Only three past presidents have been served with subpoenas.
How the Fight Against AIDS Can Inform the Fight Against Covid-19
Dr. Anthony S. Fauci grappled with another health crisis decades ago. What he told Retro Report about the effort against AIDS could apply to the battle against the coronavirus.
The 1968 Kerner Commission Report Still Echoes Across America
Anger over policing and inequality boiled over more than 50 years ago, and a landmark report warned that it could happen again.
Philadelphia's Divisive Mayor Rizzo, In His Own Words
Like President Trump, former Mayor Frank Rizzo styled himself as a straight talker.
When Presidents Send In Federal Troops
The 1807 Insurrection Act has sometimes been used to protect, not suppress, civil rights protests.
Covid-19, Like Other Real-World Events, Has Changed Sports
Baseball, football and college sports have been transformed by what's in the headlines.
In the Race for a Covid-19 Vaccine, History Has Some Red Flags
Immunizations have saved lives, and side effects are rare. But there have been missteps.
A Coronavirus Vaccine in Months? Not So Fast, Scientists Say.
Over 100 Covid-19 vaccines are in the works. History suggests it could take years.
Long-Distance Learning Isn’t New
When a polio outbreak closed Chicago schools in 1937, teachers turned to technology.
As Covid-19 Spreads, Why Does Congress Risk Meeting in Person?
Face-to face meetings are a long tradition, and changes have always been a hard sell.
Covid-19 Contact Tracing Raises Privacy Concerns
Detecting points of contact has become a critical weapon in the fight against the coronavirus.
Superspreaders Are a Covid-19 Mystery
Like Typhoid Mary, some people are experts at passing along infection. No one knows why.
After Covid-19, How Should We Handle the Handshake?
Handshakes, cheek kisses and high-fives are out. What should replace them?
How the Democrats' Biden-Sanders Split Echoes the 1964 GOP Convention
An ideological split among Democrats emerged in the 2020 primary. In 1964, Republicans had to select Nelson Rockefeller, the establishment choice, or Barry Goldwater, a staunch conservative.