Many writers used their romantic partners as inspiration for characters and plot lines: Tolstoy's courtship of his wife, Sophia, became the model for Levin's wooing of Kitty in Anna Karenina, while Gustave Flaubert shamelessly infused intimate details about his mistress into the titular Madame Bovary. But some scribes owe much more to their significant others. These career-defining books might never have graced our shelves if it weren't for writers' strong-willed other halves.
Social scientists have a new way of researching happiness. Now, for years you had to ask somebody why they were happy in order study what makes somebody happy, but that's been hard to do every minute of every day until now. Guy Raz of the TED Radio Hour explains.
GUY RAZ, BYLINE: Matt Killingsworth is a scientist who...
MATT KILLINGSWORTH: ...studies the causes and nature of human happiness.
RAZ: Which used to mean bringing people to a lab and interviewing them and trying to figure out...
Hollywood's been known to dramatize even the most dramatic of real-life narratives. So of course the real Eliot Ness wasn't nearly as dashing as Robert Stack or Kevin Costner (although maybe he was).
He wasn't a G-man; he never carried an FBI badge. Nor was he the lawman who brought the tax case that put away America's most famous mobster, Al Capone — even though the Capone case made him a household name. But he was a genuine pioneer of modern police work.
Abraham Lincoln may be the most biographied, analyzed, deified, second-guessed and impersonated figure in U.S. history. He's been seen as Carl Sandburg's mournful prairie genius and Gore Vidal's shrewd railroad lawyer, who knew when to play the rube.
He's been portrayed in comprehensive histories by James McPherson, Doris Kearns Goodwin, and hundreds more in the sweeping movies of John Ford and Steven Spielberg.