"...Animals were property, the Supreme Court ruled, but they were not like other types of property. If this were true, the plaintiffs argued, one could seek sentimental damages for the destruction of a “taxidermied” pet deemed an heirloom, but not for a euthanized animal...".
Does property law apply to animals, or doesn't it? Is an inanimate thing really more emotionally valuable than a beloved pet? And why, if judges believe an animal to be a special kind of property—“not a fungible, inanimate object like, say, a toaster,” as one court writes—is the law still so unclear?
Cover story about Sendhil Mullainathan, a behavioral economist who argues that qualities often considered part of someone’s basic character—impulsive behavior, poor performance in school, poor financial decisions—may in fact be the products of a pervasive feeling of scarcity. And when that feeling is constant, as it is for people mired in poverty, it captures and compromises the mind.
Why does fake acupuncture cause real pain? How do pills made of corn starch cure chronic arm pain? One scientist looks at the power of nothing. Feature story for Harvard Magazine.
Harvard Professor Ellen Langer believes that our mindless decisions--our beliefs about aging, our deference to doctors, even the way we talk about our illnesses--can have drastic effects on how (and if) we live to see old age.
Can thinking about your diet make you thin?
Dr. Michael Rich studies how media affect children, and how young brains adapt--or maladapt--to today's digital diet.
On the front lawn of the U.S. Vice President's house, less than 150 yards from the world's most precise clock, sits another type of time piece.