Editor's note

When Jennifer Wenzel saw the now-iconic photo of Nazi sympathizer James Alex Fields, Jr. driving his car into a crowd of counterprotesters, it reminded her of another image that emerged out of a “Unite the Right” moment in 1937. Like the Charlottesville photo, Pablo Picasso’s anti-war masterpiece Guernica, she writes, “conveys a moment of terror through a jumble of forms and fragments that seem to make no sense.”

President Donald Trump is a master of using fear to motivate his base. David Alpher, who has worked to resolve conflict in Iraq, explains how Trump’s rhetoric is understood by domestic extremists – and how moderates can fight against violent polarization.

And the next time you cross the street, take a moment to think how it might be a different experience if the cars around you didn’t have human drivers. Without making eye contact with its driver, how would you be confident an approaching car won’t hit you? Michael Clamann at Duke University’s Humans and Autonomy Lab explains how his research, and others’, is trying to figure out how best to have cars and pedestrians communicate with each other.

Nick Lehr

Editor, Arts and Culture

Top story

Ryan Kelly’s iconic photograph of the moment that James Fields’ car plowed into a crowd of protestors in Charlottesville, Virginia. Ryan M. Kelly/AP

An American 'Guernica'?

Jennifer Wenzel, Columbia University

Ryan Kelly's iconic photograph from Charlottesville evokes a 'Unite the Right' moment from 1937 – and the anti-war masterpiece by Picasso that emerged from it.

Politics + Society

Science + Technology


  • More states are allowing guns on college campuses

    Neal H. Hutchens, University of Mississippi; Kerry B. Melear, University of Mississippi

    More and more states are passing legislation requiring that students and faculty be permitted to carry concealed weapons on campus. But shouldn't universities have a choice when it comes to campus safety?

Environment + Energy

  • Curbing climate change: Why it's so hard to act in time

    Timothy H. Dixon, University of South Florida

    Why is it so hard to reach consensus about how to slow climate change? Multiple time lags get in the way: some make it hard to convey the risk, while others prolong the search for solutions.

Ethics + Religion

  • Explaining polygamy and its history in the Mormon Church

    Joanna Brooks, San Diego State University

    Joseph Smith, founder of Mormonism, taught that a righteous man could help numerous women and children go to heaven by being 'sealed' in plural marriage. Norms have been revised, but tensions remain.


From our international editions

Today’s quote

Human beings have evolved to focus on immediate threats. We have a tough time dealing with risks that have time lags of decades or even centuries.


Curbing climate change: Why it's so hard to act in time

Timothy H. Dixon

University of South Florida

Timothy H. Dixon