05.31.145:45 AM ET

The Daily Beast’s Best Longreads, May 31, 2014

From the origins of the religious right to the mind-bending corruption of Italian politics, the Daily Beast picks the best journalism from around the web this week.

The Real Origins of the Religious Right

Randall Ballmer, Politico Magazine

They’ll tell you it was abortion. Sorry, the historical record is clear: it was segregation.

In Defense of Schlock Music

Jody Rosen, New York

Journey, Billy Joel, and Lionel Ritchie are better than you think.

The Italian Disaster

Perry Anderson, London Review of Books

In a breathtaking, 19,000-word overview of the Italian political system in the context of conflicts over austerity, historian Perry Anderson delivers a shocking—and sometimes hilarious—diagnosis of the tragic miscarriage of democracy in one of Europe’s largest nations.

The Other Side of Deportation

Eli Saslow, The Washington Post

An American struggles to prepare for life without her husband.

Soccer’s Deadliest Fans

James Young, Rolling Stone

With the World Cup fast approaching, Brazil is attempting to curtail its controversial soccer fan clubs. But who is really to blame for the violence surrounding the beautiful game?

Spies, Cash and Fear: Inside Christian Money Guru Dave Ramsey’s Social Media Witch Hunt

Matthew Paul Turner, The Daily Beast

When critics appeared online, employees say the evangelical financial whiz went ballistic, allegedly firing innocent employees and offering bounties for information.

To send suggestions for future editions, email david.sessions@thedailybeast.com. For more great longreads, visit our friends at Longreads.com.