You’re No Trickster, Elon Musk

The Real ‘Agent of Chaos’ Does More Than Disrupt the Status Quo

The term “agent of chaos” has been rattling around in the back of my brain since a billionaire announced his intention to acquire a “sporadically profitable social company,” to quote the New York Times, for $44 billion, roughly 19 percent of his net worth. Some used it in the negative, but mostly it was the fandom who murmured it, admiringly, after news of the purchase broke. Their trickster king, at it again.

In this chaotic period, people like Elon Musk, who seemingly wield chaos like a lightning rod, have become lauded …

God Save the Capitol

How a Cold War Spiritual Arms Race Led to the Jan. 6 Plot to Overthrow the Government

“I am here by special divine appearance, a living soul,” Pauline Bauer stated in federal court this summer while standing trial for crimes including violent entry. “I do not stand …

mural San Francisco post office

The Mural So Controversial Nixon Tried to Remove It

75 Years Later, 'War and Peace' Survives, But Its Ideals Have Not

As multiple crises pile atop one another in the young 21st century, a tripartite mural at a former San Francisco post office lobby rebukes us with its dated optimism.

“War and …

The Beloved Bard of Solidarity | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

The Beloved Bard of Solidarity

Jacek Kaczmarski Wrote the Soundtrack for Poland's Cold War-Era Resistance Movement

A microphone on a stand; a man with a guitar. The waiting audience is restless, shifting in seats as he tunes his instrument. He speaks one word—Kołysanka, lullaby in Polish. The …

The U.S.-China Rivalry Isn’t a New Cold War; It’s Bigger Than That | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

The U.S.-China Rivalry Isn’t a New Cold War; It’s Bigger Than That

The Fact That the Two Countries Are Interdependent Makes Both War and Peaceful Cooperation More Possible

The rivalry between China and the United States is not a new Cold War, but it involves profound competition along economic, technological, and economic lines that create dilemmas for other …

It’s a Cold War Christmas, Charlie Brown | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

It’s a Cold War Christmas, Charlie Brown

The Peanuts Christmas Special Tapped Into a National American Zeitgeist by 'Placing Capitalism and Christianity in the Mouths of Babes'

Charlie Brown spends much of his first animated special in contemplation, depression, and frustration over the Christmas holiday. “Find the true meaning of Christmas. Win money, money, money,” he reads …