The Mysteries of a Rocket Mom, Parasites, and Human Intelligence

Rocket Girl: The Story of Mary Sherman Morgan, America’s First Female Rocket Scientist by George D. Morgan

The nutshell: Mary Sherman Morgan’s playwright son, George D. Morgan, knew that his mother had invented hydyne, the rocket propellant that put America’s first satellite in orbit, while working at North American Aviation during the Cold War. But much of her story was shrouded in mystery until he decided to write first a play and then a biography about …

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Spam, Psychos, or Nukes: Take Your Pick

University of Michigan information scholar Brunton uses spam as a window into the history of the Internet, providing insight on everything from early online community building to Google’s dominance.

American Voters, American Writers, American Indians

University of Delaware historian May chronicles the civil rights struggles—including the assassinations of Medgar Evers and Martin Luther King Jr.—and political maneuverings that gave birth, eventually, to the Voting Rights …