Mitchell S Jackson profiles Ahmaud Arbery, who was 25 years old when he was shot to death by three white men in Georgia earlier this year.
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Host Ira Glass talks to a direct descendent of Thomas Jefferson about treating Monticello as his personal playground and about whether monuments to Jefferson should come down.
In just one year, everything in one ordinary public middle school changed. It went from an incoming class of thirty sixth graders—most of them Black, Latino, and Middle Eastern—to a class of 103 sixth graders.
As the school year moved forward, the fundraising committee planned a gala at the French Embassy. And the PTA planned a separate, Spring Carnival.
Bim Adewunmi talks about the feeling of now.
Producers Diane Wu and Lina Misitzis spend the night at a corner grocery store in Brooklyn, New York and talk to some of the people that pass by. (25 minutes)
Writer Kimberly Jones provides context with a brief history of the American economy, told through a popular board game.
Ira and producer Neil Drumming visit a comic book store in Philadelphia to try and help Ira understand Afrofuturism.
Producer Neil Drumming spends a couple days exploring Detroit, first with a quirky mayoral candidate running an Afrofuturist campaign, and then with a couple of locals.
Comedian and actor Azie Dungey recounts her time playing a slave for visiting tourists at George Washington’s estate in Mount Vernon.
This American Life commissioned an original song, “The Deep,” from the hip-hop group clppng., featuring actor and Hamilton performer Daveed Diggs. The song is based on the underwater mythology of the 90s Detroit electro band Drexciya.
Producer Neil Drumming looks into two videos he found on YouTube—one that takes place in Atlantic City, another in Brooklyn—that deal with the trouble kids face walking home from school.
On a friend’s recommendation, B.A. Parker decides to try attending First Corinthian Baptist Church in Harlem.
Emanuele Berry and Ira Glass watch a Soviet film from 1936. A bizarre cameo of an African American baby in an all-white crowd makes Emanuele wonder about what it’s like to be Black in a country with so few Black people.
Yelena Khanga grew up in Russia knowing almost no other Black people. Emanuele Berry asks Yelena what that was like.