Children ask questions that challenge the best of parents. They also expose the weaknesses of our responses. A set of reflections from a black South African mother and activist who is confronted by the truth of her daughter's words and embracing the "weirdness" of their "dark brown and peach" family.
A sampling of our best picks of the week on everything from vocation to multitasking, honoring teachers and Alzheimer's patients. And some ways to join On Being in the studio or on your iPad.
With the overwhelming angst of privilege, our columnist confesses to her own inclinations to participate in Twitter testimonies of white privilege. But, it's no substitute for the moral imagination required to acknowledge the emotional lives of others.
A black theologian talks with one of America's leading Old Testament scholars about Ferguson and the place of protest and prophecy in our faith, the place for our rage, the need for honest talk, the role of education in protest, and the transformative potential of radicality.
With the decisions about the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, powerful words from a Holocaust survivor and essays dealing with grief and loss, systemic solutions, and polls that polarize.
With the grand jury's decision not to indict the police officer who killed Michael Brown, a school of children's uncommon silence in New Mexico leads the way to expressing grief and finding a role for our anger.
A powerful commentary from the mother of a black teenage son who says we need to stop talking around the edges of race and address the systemic problem itself: that we see black men as less than human.
A behind-the-scenes narrative of how the music in our podcasts find its way serendipitously into our production process — all by way of hip hop aficionado Imani Perry. Lauryn Hill comes through in a pinch.
A powerful essay on the responsibility of raising black sons in America. Against the forces of injustice and the brutal truth of racial inequality, a scholar and a mother finds hope in community and the knowledge that "together we create gardens of possibility in the parched earth."
Courtney Martin's column on reckoning inspired this unexpected campaign on telling our own stories of privilege.
In a breakout year for black film, "12 Years a Slave" invited both dialogue and accolade. Yet films like "Fruitvale Station," about the life of a black man today, get passed over. A contemplation on race, Hollywood, and the conversations we aren't having.
How do we fulfill the dream that was bequeathed to us? By practicing the joyful art of doing life together across racial categories without fear.
Watch a recording of our live video stream with Rev. Lucas Johnson and Dr. Gwendolyn Zoharah Simmons at NPR headquarters in Washington, DC. The topic: nonviolence and how social change happens. A riveting hour story and substance.
A new generation of Asian-American poets are finding power of expression in slam poetry. For Bao Phi, it's the lifeblood of exploring his identity in America.
Trent Gilliss finds inspiration in all things good: a civil rights pilgrimage in Alabama, a video on empathy, a potential pope right under our noses, and some playful voices in the Twittersphere.
Do we stop caring when there's no hope? Moving past the headlines with personal stories that create a human connection, an emotional connection.
A humbling observation on marriage and inequality.
String theorist S. James Gates speaks eloquently and thoughtfully about how he discovered Einstein’s passion for the problem of racism, and his "capacity for ethical engagement and his scientific creativity."
On Thursday night before the debate, I wrote something that meant a great deal to me. It was about a trip I made to Ole Miss in August and the incredible symbolism of that the debate on that campus, a cultural triumph it signified far larger than who won or lost.
The drama in financial markets nearly stopped the debate completely, and overshadowed a few hours of reflection we might have allowed ourselves on race. But Scott Simon did a lovely piece on Saturday morning, and Slate produced this: “Negro to Address Ole Miss Class” (The headline you won’t be reading about tonight’s presidential debate.) A white presidential candidate in civil debate against a black presidential candidate is a monumental, quiet victory of a milestone worth pondering, and celebrating, in a world in which bad news gets all the attention.
Our managing producer takes a sharp look at our journalistic profession's cultural appropriation of stereotypes in the political season.
Krista reflects on a recent trip she took to Oxford, Mississippi — the setting for the first 2008 U.S. presidential debate.
I wanted to share a tremendously informative piece of writing that came into my inbox yesterday — an essay by Omer M. Mozaffar about the passing of Warith Deen (often referred to as W.Deen) Mohammed titled “American Islam Enters its Next Phase.” Mohammed was a gentle but towering figure in the history of Islam in the U.S., yet remains little known in the culture at large.