Editor's note

We’ve been told for years that the developing teen brain is the the reason for risky adolescent behavior, but there’s much more to the story. A review of years of scientific research into teens suggests that it is time to put this belief to rest. Risky behavior might more accurately be attributed to a “biologically driven need for exploration.”

As President Donald Trump prepares to visit Asia this week, Korea watcher Katharine Moon reconsiders the conventional wisdom that China can rein in North Korea’s nuclear ambitions.

And as many celebrate All Souls’ Day on Thursday, Nov. 2, to honor those who have passed on, we bring you a series of articles on how cultures have dealt with loss and grief. In today’s piece, University of Montana’s Ashby Kinch explains how in medieval societies, the dead remained well integrated into the community – they were simply considered another age group.

Lynne Anderson

Health + Medicine Editor

Top stories

A group of teenagers hanging out. George Rudy/Shutterstock.com

Why it's time to lay the stereotype of the 'teen brain' to rest

Dan Romer, University of Pennsylvania

In recent years, the notion of a structurally imbalanced teenage brain has been faulted for bad choices. A review of studies suggests that a deficit in brain development is not to blame.

Does the road to containing the North Korea threat really run through Beijing? Reuters/KCNA

Don't rely on China: North Korea won't kowtow to Beijing

Katharine H.S. Moon, Wellesley College

Politicians and pundits are overplaying China's influence over Kim Jong-Un.

Detail of figures from the Dance Macabre, Meslay-le-Grenet, from late 15th-century France. Ashby Kinch

How the dead danced with the living in medieval society

Ashby Kinch, The University of Montana

For medieval cultures, the dying process and death itself was a 'transition,' not a rupture.

Economy + Business

Arts + Culture

  • The misguided campaign to remove a Thomas Hart Benton mural

    Henry Adams, Case Western Reserve University

    A controversial panel on Indiana University's campus depicts Ku Klux Klan members, but Benton had a reason for including them. Is avoidance really the best way to deal with dark episodes of the past?

Science + Technology

  • Measuring the implicit biases we may not even be aware we have

    Kate Ratliff, University of Florida; Colin Smith, University of Florida

    Prejudice and stereotypes are part of why social inequality persists. Social scientists use tests to measure the implicit biases people harbor and see how much they relate to actions.

Environment + Energy

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Today’s quote

Benton clearly felt that the state government's support of the Klan was something that should not be whitewashed.


The misguided campaign to remove a Thomas Hart Benton mural

Henry Adams

Case Western Reserve University

Henry Adams