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The Week's Best 'Pacific Standard' Stories

Out top stories for the week of January 24–29, as curated by our editors.
 (Photos, clockwise from top left: Chicago Review Press; David Vogin; Noel Tock/Flickr; Netflix)

 (Photos, clockwise from top left: Chicago Review Press; David Vogin; Noel Tock/Flickr; Netflix)

It was an eventful week in the American news cycle. The Supreme Court cleared Planned Parenthood of wrongdoing and gave juveniles sentenced to life in prison another shot at parole; the self-fashioned libertarian revolutionary Ammon Bundy got arrested; and two new reports underscored how badly federal agencies messed up the water crises in Flint, Michigan; Severing, Ohio; and potentially beyond. We worked hard to keep you informed on all the new developments (minus those related to Donald Trump's latest temper tantrum). That said, our favorite stories of the week were, in journalistic parlance, pretty evergreen—in other words, they were long, thoughtful essays about ongoing stories.

How is it that only 19 percent of S&P 500 directors are women? Can behemoth platform companies like Uber and AirBnB actually benefit small business? And now that we've all binged on Making a Murderer, should we consider what it left out? Without further ado, here are the stories that answered those questions—and became the ones we loved most this week.

  • "Is the Stock Market Sexist?" by Katie Gilbert
    Inherent market bias is one of the factors keeping women off corporate boards—until someone has to take the fall. Welcome to the Glass Cliff.
  • "A Future History of the United States," by Malcolm Harris 
    In The American Slave Coast: A History of the Slave-Breeding Industry, Ned and Constance Sublette offer a radical re-interpretation of American history. It’s brutal and uncompromising, and, for better or worse, it’s how we should understand the country.