Undark Magazine

3 Magazines | 12,768 Followers | @UndarkMagazine | Undark Magazine explores science as a frequently wondrous, sometimes contentious, and occasionally troubling byproduct of human culture.

To Believe is to Feel: When a Mysterious Epidemic Isn’t So Mysterious

Stories are contagious and more powerful than we think. They can feed back into our physiology in ways we continue to misunderstand.<p>When U.S. …

U.S. State Department

As Cambodia Educates More Girls, Boys Fall Through the Cracks

Girls now complete lower secondary school nearly 20 percent more often than boys, and in some provinces, 1.5 girls complete school for every …

Construction Industry

The Dark Side of ‘Service With a Smile’

Emotional labor — or feigning feelings at work — taxes some of the deepest parts of the psyche. Employers can take steps to lessen the strain.<p>It …

Psychology

Amid Smoldering E-Waste in the West Bank, Activists Fight for Reform

Burning electronic waste to extract metals for resale is toxic, illegal, and common in the Palestinian Territories. Can activists forge a new …

Israel

Ebola Vaccine Brings Hope, and Challenges, to the Democratic Republic of Congo

In our weekly news roundup: a vaccine for Ebola in the DRC, confronting sexual harassment in the sciences, and more.<p>As the Democratic Republic of …

Disease

In Caves and Monasteries, Clues to Wine’s Startling History

You’d think wine technology, like technology in general, would advance in a fairly straight line. Quite the opposite, an Israeli historian has …

New Jersey

The Neural Signature of Community Violence

Our study suggests that young teens who witness violence exhibit differences in the structure and function of their brains in late …

The Brain

In Costa Rica, a Debate Over Power Lines and Wildlife Electrocutions

No one knows how many monkeys and other wildlife are killed by electrical infrastructure, but the government admits it’s a problem. Will it be …

Costa Rica

Putting the Climate-Conflict Hypothesis to the Test

The idea that climate change will cause human conflict and mass migrations has become increasingly accepted. But the evidence is lacking.<p>“The Darfur …

Climate Change

In South Africa, Digging for Clues to an Ancient Extinction — and the Planet’s Future

If volcano-driven climate change was behind the Permian-Triassic land extinction, scientists might learn something crucial about our own fate.<p>In …

Earth Science

As Pruitt Aides Resign, EPA Scandals Keep on Coming

In our weekly news roundup: continued ethical questions at the EPA, new evidence for life on Mars, and more.<p>Ethical questions continue to swirl …

Breast Cancer

For ‘2001: A Space Odyssey,’ the Liftoff Was Anything but Smooth

A new book takes us back to 1968, an obsessive filmmaker’s magnum opus, and an opening-night audience that didn’t get it at all.<p>The evening of April …

Science Fiction

Satellite Imagery Is Revolutionizing the World. But Can We Trust What We See?

As satellite images become more ubiquitous, we should reflect on where they come from, how they are created, and the purpose for their use.<p>In 1972, …

Google Earth

Are Google and Facebook Responsible for the Medical Quackery They Host?

Social media algorithms help charlatans spread autism cures, vaccine disinformation, and AIDS denialism through online videos. Who’s really to …

Internet

Pain in Lab Animals: How Much Is Too Much?

Scientists and their institutions say they’re committed to keeping pain and distress to a minimum where they can. But that’s no easy task.<p>Each year,</i> …

University of California

Amid High-Tech Alternatives, a Reckoning for Iceland’s Glacier Keepers

Citizen scientists have served as glacier trackers in Iceland — and witnesses to the ravages of climate change — for generations. Will they …

Global Warming

Revelations of Sexual Misconduct and Assault Continue in Academia’s #MeToo Moment

In our weekly news roundup: challenging the culture of harassment in academia, a revised death toll for Puerto Rico, and more.<p>A UCLA cardiologist …

Sexual Harassment

Would You Sell Your Soul for a Nobel Prize?

Too often, scientists skirt ethical boundaries in the race for high honors. And that’s just one problem with the Nobels, a new book argues.<p>In 2014, a …

Physics

Ep. 27: The Bees of Bandelier, Snail Memories, and the State of Science

Our latest Undark podcast looks at the resilience of bees; a study in memory transfer; and an attack on science.<p>Join our podcast host Kasha Patel as …

Journalism

In Artificial Intelligence, Young Ethiopians Eye a Fertile Future

A lab in Addis Ababa is on a mission to use AI to disrupt conventional development models and inspire a new generation of coders.<p>“I don’t think Homo …

Artificial Intelligence

Technology is Not a Drug: Debunking the Biggest Myths About ‘Technology Addiction’

There’s a tiny kernel of truth to our concerns, but the available evidence suggests that claims of a crisis are entirely unwarranted.<p>How concerned …

Mental Health

Suing the European Union Over Climate Change

A case is being pursued against the European parliament and the council of the EU for allowing overly high greenhouse gas emissions to …

Europe

Pound for Pound, Humanity Proves (Again) to Be a Planet-Altering Colossus

In our weekly news roundup: A study takes stock of global biomass, the EPA shoves reporters, giant worms invade France, and more.<p>A common refrain …

Research

When Doctors Don’t Get It: A Painful Reckoning With Endometriosis

In ‘Ask Me About My Uterus,’ Abby Norman recounts her (and other women’s) harrowing battles with an all too common disorder.<p>On an unremarkable …

Book Reviews

Trump’s Abortion Rule Could Inhibit Access to Certain Forms of Birth Control, Too

The president’s plan to cut off a funding stream for clinics that provide or refer abortion services could make it harder to get IUDs and implants.<p>On …

Health Care

Desert Bees Have a Secret: How to Survive a Decade of Drought

Bees are most diverse in arid places. Will their strategies hold up in a changing climate — and can we learn enough about them before it’s too …

Ecology

How Your Mind Reacts to Stress

When you experience stressful events, a physiological change is triggered that can cause you to become fixated on what might go wrong.<p>Some of the …

Psychology

Age of Enlightenment: The Promise of Circadian Lighting

The impacts of artificial lighting on human health are not fully understood, but many scientists say enough is known to warrant dramatic changes …

Middle School

After Concern About ‘Public Relations Nightmare,’ EPA Blocks Drinking Water Study

In our weekly news roundup: EPA holds back a water contamination study, Ebola continues to spread, and more.<p>Piling onto the seemingly …

Evolution’s Worst Mistake? How About External Testicles?

Of course there’s an explanation (sperm like to develop at lower temperatures). But really: What intelligent designer could have come up with …

Biology