A Tale of Two Churches

Two pastors—one black, one white—unite their congregations in the heart of Trump country.

Published: Nov 20, 2019
Length: 28 minutes (7,000 words)

Lessons in Survival

“My grandmother was a refugee. She prized community over property. By cleaning the homes of white people — by dusting their bookshelves and scrubbing their toilets down on her knees — she was able to raise her three children in Michigan. They all lived well into old age. She ensured their survival by running. This required sacrifice, humility, strength, and faith. This is what Mabel knew, and she knew it from people like Harriet Tubman. When something is going to kill you, you run.”

Published: Nov 21, 2019
Length: 18 minutes (4,554 words)

Fascinated to Presume: In Defense of Fiction

As people accuse fiction of presumption, vanity, appropriation, and putting words in peoples’ mouths, one of our most brilliant writers shows us what fiction does best, which is compassionately imagining ourselves as other people, so we can understand who they, and human beings, truly are.

Published: Oct 17, 2019
Length: 24 minutes (6,137 words)

My Mother’s Daughter

In this personal essay, Molly Jong Fast considers her famous parents’ and grandparents’ tendencies toward infidelity, and how she is still affected, as an adult child.

Published: Feb 26, 2019
Length: 9 minutes (2,412 words)

Climate Signs

“For all the ferocity of my love, I’m powerless to protect my kids from the mass extinction we’re in the midst of that could eliminate 30–50 percent of all living species by the middle of the twenty-first century. Why is this not the core of the core curriculum? Why aren’t we all speaking about this?”

Published: Feb 1, 2019
Length: 49 minutes (12,293 words)

Rome: Where Migrants Face Eviction as Fascists Find a Home

Last November, Italy passed the “Salvini Decree,” a law that eliminated the right of migrants to seek “humanitarian protection.”

Published: Jan 28, 2019
Length: 16 minutes (4,184 words)

James Baldwin’s Harlem Through a Child’s Eyes

Gabrielle Bellot on James Baldwin’s children’s book, Little Man, Little Man, written for his nephew, Tejan: “[It] brings to life many of Baldwin’s arguments as it dissolves rigidly drawn lines between children’s and adult literature.”

Published: Jan 3, 2019
Length: 9 minutes (2,458 words)

The Jonestown We Don’t Know

“In truth, as I have come to learn, Jonestown does not point to a singular erratic Svengali but, rather, to fundamental aspects of both my adopted and my home countries.”

Published: Dec 21, 2018
Length: 19 minutes (4,854 words)

My Great Grandfather the Bundist

Writer and artist Molly Crabapple tells the story of her late great grandfather, self-taught artist Sam Rothbort, and of the Bund, the revolutionary anti-Zionist Jewish political party he joined in Vilna in 1898.

Published: Oct 6, 2018
Length: 22 minutes (5,627 words)

‘The Soul as a Picture Gallery’: Mid-Century African-American Portraits

A show currently on exhibit at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art highlights mid-twentieth-century African-American photographs.

Published: Sep 22, 2018
Length: 6 minutes (1,664 words)