How a Con Man’s Wild Testimony Sent Dozens to Jail, and 4 to Death Row

Paul Skalnik is a grifter and criminal. Now a man may be executed because of his dubious testimony. Why did prosecutors rely on him as an informant?

Published: Dec 4, 2019
Length: 54 minutes (13,500 words)

Does Who You Are at 7 Determine Who You Are at 63?

In 1964, filmmaker Michael Apted first interviewed 14 children from varying socio-economic demographics n England to investigate the maxim, “Give me a child until he is 7, and I will give you the man.” He’s returned to interview the original subjects every seven years to see how their lives have turned out. What’s been called “the most profound documentary series in the history of cinema” has discovered that the maxim is false; as we all know, life is far more complicated than that.

Published: Nov 27, 2019
Length: 34 minutes (8,730 words)

Congratulations, You’re a Congresswoman. Now What?

Ayanna Pressley and Abigail Spanberger were part of a wave of Democrats who took office this year full of hope. Maintaining it has not been easy.

Published: Nov 18, 2019
Length: 57 minutes (14,400 words)

The Mister Rogers No One Saw

As Jeanne Marie Laskas remembers her friendship with Fred Rogers, she recalls his obsession with “the meager and the marginalized,” the universal human need to create, and his firm belief that what’s most essential about us as humans is invisible to the eye.

Published: Nov 19, 2019
Length: 28 minutes (7,212 words)

What College Admissions Offices Really Want

An investigation into the difference between the diversity colleges say they want, and what their bottom lines demand.

Author: Paul Tough
Published: Sep 10, 2019
Length: 36 minutes (9,030 words)

King of Pop

Tyshawn Jones made a name for himself in the skateboarding world by performing spectacular tricks on the chaotic streets of New York. At 20, he’s already opened a restaurant, founded his own hardware company, and was named Thrasher’s “Skater of the Year.”

Published: Aug 29, 2019
Length: 21 minutes (5,293 words)

Did Venus Williams Ever Get Her Due?

“How the first Williams sister changed the course of women’s tennis.”

Published: Aug 22, 2019
Length: 30 minutes (7,586 words)

Neil Young’s Lonely Quest to Save Music

“It’s strange to imagine that Young might be a prophet of sorts — but maybe not. His lesson is that everything human is shot through with imperfection. Filtering that out doesn’t make us more perfect; it is making us sick. He’s a great artist, which means that he sees and hears more, which may make him a loon, but is also why he is still worth listening to.”

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

Our Democracy’s Founding Ideals Were False When They Were Written. Black Americans Have Fought to Make Them True.

As part of the New York Times Magazine‘s 1619 package commemorating the 400th anniversary of the beginning of slavery in America, Nikole Hannah Jones writes about the crucial influence of black Americans — through resistance, and a never ending fight for equal rights for all — on democracy in this country. “More than any other group in this country’s history, we have served, generation after generation, in an overlooked but vital role: It is we who have been the perfecters of this democracy.”

Published: Aug 14, 2019
Length: 30 minutes (7,675 words)

The 1619 Project

With essays, poems, timelines, and photography, the New York Times Magazine’s 1619 Project commemorates the 400th anniversary of American slavery, retelling the story of America’s origins by “placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center.”

Published: Aug 14, 2019
Length: 149 minutes (37,272 words)