Smithsonian Magazine takes you on a journey through history, science, world culture and technology with breathtaking images from around the world.
What It Takes • A SUCCESSFUL SECRETARY MUST ACKNOWLEDGE THE INSTITUTION’S FAILURES AS WELL AS SUCCESSES—AND CELEBRATE ITS CAPACITY FOR CHANGE
The Storm Problem • Just being fascinated by the weather wasn’t enough
Measured Responses • SOME INGENIOUS METHODS FOR GETTING A FIX ON ATMOSPHERIC CONDITIONS AND EVEN THE EARTH’S CRUST
MATERIAL WITNESS • For historians, quilts are much more than just decorative covers for a bed
The Other Sparta • Fierce? Yes. Tough? You bet. But it’s time to see beyond the myth of the super-warrior
They Were Lyrical, Too • THE SURPRISING ARTISTIC DEBT WE OWE TO THE ROUGH AND READY SPARTANS
PLAY THE PAST • Powering up a serious new role for video games on campus
Key to a Lost Language • How an 1,800-year-old statuette illuminates an endangered Latin American culture
Don’t Be Puzzled • YOU CAN FIND SEVEN ANSWERS IN THESE PAGES
IN THEIR ELEMENT • THE WATER IS COLD inside Norway’s northernmost fjords. When I slipped in headfirst, wearing a thick wetsuit, the 40-degree Fahrenheit surface temperature made the water feel dense and biting on my exposed face. Diving down I felt myself crossing a threshold into another world—dark, frigid, seemingly bottomless, and home to giant carnivores that eat fish, seals and porpoises.
SAKE IN THE USA
THE PLAGUE AMONG CHILDREN • It was highly contagious, lethal and mysterious. Then medical experts developed treatments and vaccines, and the dreaded affliction disappeared—but not entirely
BREAKING THROUGH • After centuries of deadly epidemics, science and public health prevailed
The Wonder of Avi Loeb • The physicist thinks we might have glimpsed evidence of an alien civilization. Despite controversy, he’s determined to find more
ask smithsonian • YOU’VE GOT QUESTIONS. WE’VE GOT EXPERTS