Politics and History

Going for Broke series logo

The hosts of "Going for Broke" discuss reporting on poverty and how to give economic insight a tone of empathy and a tangible sense of human connection.More

A family

While caring for other human beings may be the most important work of all, it sure isn’t reflected in the pay scale. That train of thought led Angela Garbes to her book, “Essential Labor: Mothering As Social Change.”More

two brothers with different creative minds

Daniel Bergner felt frustrated and helpless back when one of his closest family members — his brother — was diagnosed as having bipolar disorder. So Bergner decided to report out other possibilities for his brother’s healing.More

a row of housing in blue

David Harvey’s work over the years has looked at the economy in radical ways, linking how we earn and spend with, say, geography. Among his fresh frameworks is something called "spatial justice." Steve Paulson asked Harvey what he means by that.More

Ngugi wa Thiong’o

Ngugi wa Thiong’o — the renowned Kenyan author — believes African writers should write in their native language, not the colonial language of English or French. He says the best way to decolonize the mind is to reclaim native languages.More

Half brothers Robert Lafayette Gee (right) and Henderson Gee (left)

Rev. Alex Gee is fascinated by genealogy. So he took a DNA test and discovered one of his ancestors was a white slave owner. Then he went down to New Orleans to meet his white relatives — and that meeting sparked a slew of complicated emotions.More

a son of Thomas Jefferson and his slave, Sally Hemings, is buried in a local cemetery.

Steve Paulson was surprised to discover that a son of Thomas Jefferson and his slave, Sally Hemings, is buried in a local cemetery. With the help of Erin Hoag of the Wisconsin Veterans Museum, he searches for the grave of Eston Hemings Jefferson.More

Malcolm Gladwell

Journalist Malcolm Gladwell is famous for mining behavioral science for his work, and when it comes to better understanding the intersection of crime, violence, and policing, he turns over and over to criminologist Frank Zimring.More

Children in Addis Ababa.

Dagmawi Woubshet and Julie Mehretu were both born in Addis Ababa and then moved to America. They wonder what the city's explosive growth will mean for its unique character — one rooted in Ethiopia's history as the only African nation never colonized.More

Ehrenreich at a New York Times discussion

Barbara Ehrenreich tells Steve Paulson that too often, our focus on positivity turns into a kind of victim blaming. She's a champion of realism and determination.More

a worker walks a maze

Sitting together to reflect on Barbara's years of work to shine a light on the experiences of middle and lower class Americans, her friend and colleague Alissa Quart recorded this interview with her in 2021. Ehrenreich died in September of 2022.More

Barbara Ehrenreich

For her latest book, “Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America,” writer Barbara Ehrenreich worked at a series of minimally paid jobs.  She was surprised to be both physically exhausted and mentally challenged by “menial” work.More

collective joy people dancing in the streets in ecstasy. andy warhol detailed colorful

Barbara Ehrenreich says modern Westerners have become obsessed with personal happiness, and we often neglect the pleasures of collective joy.More

a woman waiting for a job interview

Andrea Dobynes Wagner is legally, but not obviously, blind. Every time she sits down for a job interview, Andrea weighs the pros and cons of disclosure. Will telling people she has a disability help or hurt her chances?More

Two figures in the rain

Maia Szalavitz is an expert in addiction. She is also someone who has experienced it personally as a young woman. It was during that time that she came upon a concept that is only now changing how we think about recovery on a mass scale —harm reduction.
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rocks on a beach

Hunting for rocks at the beach seems like a harmless pastime, right? For Katie Prout, it’s been a coping mechanism, a sense of control. But when she decided it was time to get help with her mental health struggles, she was met with endless obstacles.More

A soldier

In 2006, Alex Miller was a US Navy IT specialist, tracking pirates off the coast of Somalia. Two years later, he didn't have a home.More

colorful row of houses

Justin Garrett Moore has been exploring the issue of "care architecture" for years. Moore is leading projects to address social justice and housing issues through empathy and respect for each others’ humanity.More

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