Finding the ordinary amid North Korea’s extravagant propaganda displays thumbnail

Finding the ordinary amid North Korea’s extravagant propaganda displays

This story appears in the May 2020 issue of National Geographic magazine. Even by North Korean standards, the final event of the country’s 70th-anniversary celebration in 2018 was a jaw-dropping spectacle. Many thousands of torch-wielding students marched in waves around Pyongyang’s Kim Il Sung Square. The electric flame on top of Juche Tower glowed while…

The pandemic may fuel the next wave of the opioid crisis thumbnail

The pandemic may fuel the next wave of the opioid crisis

There’s usually a stream of people headed into the unassuming brick building in the Cedar Rapids neighborhood where Sarah Ziegenhorn runs the Iowa Harm Reduction Coalition. In 2016 when she moved back to Iowa to begin medical school, Ziegenhorn started the small nonprofit to help people who use drugs. Today, the drop-in center provides medical…

How absinthe made a comeback in its Alpine homeland—after a century-long ban thumbnail

How absinthe made a comeback in its Alpine homeland—after a century-long ban

Absinthe is still a drink that strikes fear into the heart of some liquor lovers. During the heady days of the belle epoque, La Fée Verte (The Green Fairy) acquired a reputation as the mind-bending tipple of choice for van Gogh, Zola, Rimbaud, Toulouse-Lautrec, and a host of other bohemian artists and writers active in…

<p>10 books that will take you on real-life Experiences thumbnail

10 books that will take you on real-life Experiences

Traveling doesn’t always have to be about changing your location. As French poet and author Anatole France wrote, “Traveling is changing your opinions and your prejudices.” Especially in this time of COVID-19 shutdowns, it might seem like travel has come to a halt. But books prove that the revelations that happen on journeys aren’t dependent…