Politics and History

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

The American carnival

Kurt Andersen says there’s something quintessentially American about fantasy — from Hollywood to our homegrown religions. The message is that you can create your own reality. But what happens when political leaders believe their own fantasies?More

two adults near a portal to Disneyland

Disney theme parks aren't just for kids. Plenty of adults say they're happy places. But a lot of people love to hate on "Disney adults." So what happens to our childhood love of fantasy when we grow older? Producer Angelo Bautista has the story.More

L to: Yeleyeni Songsore and her husband; Mawiyah Kambon and Kamal Kambon; Kwaku Asantu Maroon Asare

At least 1,500 Black Americans have moved to Ghana since 2019, when the government declared its "Year of Return" initiative, calling on Africans in the diaspora to return to Africa. As the US continues to confront its history of racism and police brutality against Black people, many are heeding Ghana's call.  More

Charles (right) interviews Prince Marfo (left). (TTBOOK)

Prince Marfo is the Suyani Cultural Director of Ghana. He says his government needs to do a better job of welcoming African Americans — he wants to see them welcomed as sisters and brothers not just as Americans with resources.More

American plane in Africa

Just as thousands of African Americans are moving to Ghana, some Ghanaians are migrating to the West. Literature professor Ato Quayson explains that it raises a difficult question: should they stay in Africa or pursue a high-profile career in North America or Europe?More

Robert (left) and Kofi (right) together in 2008. (Robert Hanserd)

Two friends of 20 years — Robert Hanserd and Emmanuel Kofi Bempong — show what a relationship between African Americans and Ghanaians can be.More

General Sherman, AKA Karl Marx

There's a famous sequoia named General Sherman that's the biggest tree on the planet. It has its own distinctive history linked to the Civil War general and a radical anarchist group. Cultural historian Daegan Miller tells this fascinating story.More

Pardeep Singh Kaleka and Arno Michaelis

Pardeep Singh Kaleka's father was murdered when a white supremacist attacked the Sikh temple that his father led. Remarkably, he and a former white supremacist met just two months after the massacre. Now, they work together.More

An abstract image of a man at a desk

Daniel Ziblatt has watched authoritarian leaders elected in country after country – Putin in Russia, Erdogan in Turkey, Orban in Hungary, Bolsinaro in Brazil. He says there’s a playbook for how demagogues destroy their countries' democracies.More

Jules Gill Peterson

Jules Gill-Peterson is a historian and trans writer, and author of one of the first histories of transgender children. Speaking with Anne, she challenges us all to imagine a world with more gender freedom and a world where trans means joy.More

Torrey Peters

One of the most eyebrow-raising books of 2021 was Torrey Peters’ debut novel, "Detransition, Baby.” Rolling Stone called it “the most subversive book of the year." It’s a story about three women – transgender and cisgender – and an unexpected pregnancy.More

Big Freedia

In Big Freedia's memoir, she tells the story of growing up gay and gender non-conforming in one of the toughest neighborhoods in New Orleans, of surviving gun violence and Hurricane Katrina, and of finding acceptance and self-expression in Bounce music.More

women walking

After a health scare, Annabel Abbs promised herself she'd make a real effort to walk every day. She fell in love with walking, even began taking multi-week walking vacations. And then she discovered she wasn't the only one -- there's a hidden history of great women walkers from the past. So she decided to tell their stories.More

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