In this issue: The crucial hours after a fraternity pledge’s fall, what Thoreau really saw, and the secrets of Google’s moonshot factory. Plus, the enduring appeal of Joni Mitchell, the science behind Mona Lisa’s smile, and more.

The Atlantic: This Month

Share Newsletter
Facebook Twitter
November 2017

November 2017

In this issue: The crucial hours after a fraternity pledge’s fall, what Thoreau really saw, and the secrets of Google’s moonshot factory. Plus, the enduring appeal of Joni Mitchell, the science behind Mona Lisa’s smile, and more.

Cover Stories

The Science Behind Mona Lisa’s Smile

How Leonardo da Vinci engineered the world’s most famous painting

Walter Isaacson

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Google X and the Science of Radical Creativity

How the secretive Silicon Valley lab is trying to resurrect the lost art of invention

Derek Thompson

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Advertisement


Features

Mayonnaise, Disrupted

How did Josh Tetrick’s vegan-mayo company become a Silicon Valley darling—and what is he really selling?

Bianca Bosker

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Death at a Penn State Fraternity

Tim Piazza fought for his life for 12 hours before his Beta Theta Pi brothers called 911. By then, it was too late.

Caitlin Flanagan

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Walden Wasn’t Thoreau’s Masterpiece

In his 2-million-word journal, the transcendentalist discovered how to balance poetic wonder and scientific rigor as he explored the natural world.

Andrea Wulf

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Dispatches

Is the American Idea Doomed?

Yoni Appelbaum

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Toby Keith in Trump’s America

Spencer Kornhaber

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

An American Mastodon in Paris

David Gauvey Herbert

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

When Working From Home Doesn’t Work

Jerry Useem

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

What’s Normal?

Ben Rowen

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Hanged, Burned, Shot, Drowned, Beaten

Kriston Capps

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Nuclear Launch Codes For Dummies

Alexander Klimburg

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

The Culture File

How Michael Clayton Presaged 2017

James Parker

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

The Unknowable Joni Mitchell

Jack Hamilton

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Jennifer Egan’s Surprising Swerve Into Historical Fiction

Ruth Franklin

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

What America Taught the Nazis

Ira Katznelson

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

The White House Mythmaker

Sam Tanenhaus

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

A New Book About Formative Literary Friendships

Ann Hulbert

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Departments

Editor's Note: A Half a Dozen Battles

Jeffrey Goldberg

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

The Conversation: How America Lost Its Mind

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

What Was the Most Influential Power Couple in History?

/ Share 

FacebookTwitter

Most Popular on The Atlantic

  1. Harvey Weinstein and the Economics of Consent
  2. On Safari in Trump's America
  3. A Lazy Person's Guide to Happiness
  4. Trump Attacks a Grieving Widow’s Account
  5. Harvey Weinstein's Statements Have Taken a Striking Turn
Sign Up for The Atlantic

Download The Atlantic’s New iOS App

Read ad-free issues of The Atlantic magazine—plus daily articles and more—on your iPhone or iPad.

  1. Subscribe to the Magazine
  2. Email Us
  1. Get The Atlantic's iOS App
  2. See All Newsletter Options

Follow Us

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn