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The World's Iconic National Dishes

On Thursday, Americans will gather to celebrate Thanksgiving, and they will do so at the dinner table.

Americans Have Always Felt Guilty About TV Watching

With Thanksgiving, the holidays have begun in earnest, ushering in an uneasy season of guilt borne partly of over-consumption: too much shopping, too much pie (if such a thing even exists), and too much entertainment.

The Food Industry's Least Appetizing Ads

I love food technology because it's such a strange combination of things: process engineering, flavor science, and things I ate yesterday.

The Sound Recorder That Changed Film

Stefan Kudelski didn't set out to make a sound recorder. He was interested in robotics, and in the 1950s, one of the ways to create robotic memory was to use magnetic tape.

The Geography of Gratitude

Satya Murthy/Flickr What are you thankful for? For Facebook users who recently passed around a status-update game, the answer was pretty clear: friends, family, and health.

A Brief History of Catholic Claims to Shakespeare

On Tuesday, word spread about the discovery of a "first folio" of the works of William Shakespeare, an artifact that news outlet placed somewhere between the holy grail and a black rhinoceros on the scale of metaphorical rarity.

The Meaning of Thanksgiving, as Told Through Cold War Propaganda

The Johnsons, a fictional Midwestern family, are in for a letdown one Thanksgiving in the 1950s. Expenses were high the previous month, and while the kids are getting stoked for turkey, it falls to their mom to tell them the truth: There will be no turkey this year.

Vladimir Putin's Tiger Causes Mayhem in China

Russia and China have had a rocky relationship over the years, enduring their fair share of border disputes, wars, and diplomatic splits.

Thanksgiving in a Foxhole, 1950

In late November 1950, U.S. and South Korean troops approached China's southern border with Korea as part of an offensive that General Douglas MacArthur hoped would reunify Korea and end the Korean War.

How Turkeys Got Supersized

Thanksgiving, the most food-focused of American holidays, provides a hearty occasion for this reminder: The dominant fruits, vegetables, and animals in modern farming are products of highly unnatural selection.

My Thanksgiving at a KFC in China

In the late summer of 2004, days before I was to move to Lianyungang, China, to teach English for a year, I spoke to an acquaintance who had spent a few years in the country.

Barack Obama, Ferguson, and the Evidence of Things Unsaid

In a recent dispatch from Ferguson, Missouri, Jelani Cobb noted that President Obama's responses to "unpunished racial injustices" constitute "a genre unto themselves." Monday night, when Barack Obama stood before the nation to interpret the non-indictment of Darren Wilson for the killing of Michael Brown, he offered a particularly tame specimen.

Darren Wilson: 'I Just Did My Job'

Breaking his long public silence, Officer Darren Wilson on Tuesday said he shot and killed Michael Brown in Ferguson after a "fight for survival" and because he feared for his life.

The Failure of Tribal Schools

Breanne Lugar says the only reason she enrolled in college was so she could move away from the house she shared on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation with her parents, her boyfriend, and her five children.

Gratitude Without God

The thing about people who study gratitude for a living is: They're really nice. They're also prolific thankers.

Does It Matter If Restaurants List Calorie Counts on Their Menus?

Calorie labeling on restaurant menus, once confined to large chain restaurants in certain cities, is soon coming your way.

Why Americans Call Turkey ‘Turkey’

Within the turkey lies the tangled history of the world. OK, not quite. But not far off, either. ‘Turkey’ the bird is native to North America.

The Next Amnesty

President Obama’s executive action last week is only an interim step. More amnesty is coming, much more.

How to Engineer the Optimally Delicious Thanksgiving Plate

There may be an art to preparing Thanksgiving dinner, but there is an art, as well, to putting that dinner on a plate.

The Hidden Labor Behind Food: How to 'Read' a Tomato

By Heart is a series in which authors share and discuss their all-time favorite passages in literature.