Daniel Akst

Dan Akst is a journalist, essayist and novelist who wrote three books. His novel, The Webster Chronicle, is based on the lives of Cotton and Increase Mather. More

Dan Akst is a journalist, novelist and essayist whose work has appeared frequently in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, Wilson Quarterly, and many other publications.
  • Clean Living, My Foot!

    Once upon a time the characteristic foot disorder of the well-to-do was gout, induced by an excess of rich foods. Lots of famous people have had it,…

  • No More Jive Turkey

    Last year at Thanksgiving we bought a turkey from a local farm and it cost $58. I couldn't help noticing, around the same time, that our local…

  • An Arresting Development

    From today's Wall Street Journal:In 1967, 50% of American men had been arrested. Since then, arrests made in connection with domestic violence and…

  • Toying with Bigness

    I've blogged in this space before about the many ways in which modern life promotes bigness--in business, government, finance, health care and so…

  • The Future of the Book

    Recently my wife and I got iPhones. There's a lot to say about them, but most of it has been said, so I'll spare you. What I find most interesting…

  • Help the Poor. Go Buy Something From Them.

    From John Cassidy's forthcoming book, How Markets Fail: "In China between 1981 and 2005, according to a recent study by researchers at the World Bank…

  • Mondo Condo

    This striking paragraph is from the excellent Calculatedrisk blog, which is filled with useful data and insight:. . .this is a reminder that new high…

  • Technology, My Foot

    Today I went to see a very capable podiatrist who really had no idea that he had ever seen me before. His office has only paper records, ships them…

  • Death by Uninsurance

    A new Harvard study estimates that lack of health insurance kills about 45,000 Americans annually, which is 2.5 times as many as the previous best…

  • The End of Civilization

    Ok, I exaggerate. It's a headline! Still, it's stunning to read that the headmaster of a fancy Massachusetts prep school is giving away the 20,000…

  • Off Base Betting

    Here is one of those stories guaranteed to convert a few more readers to libertarianism. New York's seedy Off Track Betting parlors, part of a…

  • Handy Heuristic

    The Boston Globe reports on financial troubles at WGBH, the nationally important public broadcaster up there, which just two years ago celebrated the…

  • In a Nutshell

    Mike Winerip has a fine, sad story in the New York Times about a 58-year-old man who went from a highly paid executive position to 18 months of…

  • Quick, Option the Rights!

    For years Hollywood has peddled crappy, simplistic movies about a heroic little person standing up to greedy corporations, unfeeling bureaucrats and…

  • The Shock of the Old

    Bedbugs are getting more and more attention lately, which makes me wonder if anyone is ever going to test my pet theory about this -- that the growth…

  • Where Are The Headline-Seeking Pols When We Need Them?

    For awhile now I've been dragging my feet on the task of upgrading our family's cell-phone service. It's the usual story: we want iPhones but we also…

  • Kidneys Again

    The Associated Press has a fascinating story about an unrepentant man who says he sold a kidney for $20,000, saving the life of a guy on Long Island…

  • Transatlantic Mysteries

    Yesterday my friend Chris and I drove into the Alps from Vienna, and during the trip I asked him a question that's been puzzling me. Why, given their…

  • London Calling

    I've been in London for about a week, assuaging my time-zone difficulties, late at night, with the Yanks and Red Sox on ESPN America. Given the…

  • Are we repressing?

    Journalists love anniversaries, but I'm surprised that hardly anyone has noticed a significant one: this month is the centennial of Freud's first and…

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

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What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

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Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

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Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

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Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

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The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

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