Latest Stories

Man along an unnamed road in Obafemi Owode, Nigeria.
Articles

Chigozie Obioma grew up in Nigeria — he’s a novelist and teaches at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln. He says that despite rampant corruption, poverty, and an HIV/AIDS crisis, Nigerians are definitely more optimistic than most. He explains why.

Length: 
9:11
Budding hope
Articles

Hope can seem saccharine. Bland. Trite. But talking about hope with Andre Willis, a philosopher of religion, might make you realize you're not thinking big enough when you think about what hope means.

Length: 
14:32
Alice Walker
Interactive

Hope is a complicated, even slippery, word. One that demands a poet’s voice. Here’s Alice Walker, reading her poem “Hope is a Woman Who Has Lost Her Fear.”

Length: 
2:49
bright brain
Articles

How neuroscientist Tali Sharot accidentally stumbled on what’s known as “the optimism bias” — our hard-wired belief that our future will be better than our past or present.

Length: 
12:21
Amanda Shires
Deep Tracks

While pregnant with her first child, Amanda Shires was playing fiddle on the road for her husband, the country superstar, Jason Isbell. Near the end of her pregnancy, touring got to be too much. So she stayed home, alone, for weeks… with nothing to do but write songs.

Length: 
11:58
Tree
Articles

Richard Powers’ “The Overstory” is overturning a lot of conventional thinking. It’s been called “visionary” and “monumental” — and it earned him the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in fiction. Though human characters shape the plot of this 500-page epic, the real heroes are trees.

Water walkers
Video

Since 2003, Grandma Josephine Mandamin led fellow Anishinaabe women on sacred “water walks” around Great Lakes. Fellow water walker, Siobhan Marks, tells her story.

Length: 
6:11
The Schlitz Bottling Floor, c. 1666.
Video

Milwaukee has a reputation as America's "Brew City." But why? Historian Ben Barbera lays out the economic forces and acts of God that built the houses of Miller, Pabst and Schlitz.

Length: 
5:18