Longform Podcast: In Conversation With Nikole Hannah-Jones

Another excellent podcast from Longform, this time in conversation with Nikole Hannah-Jones who covers civil rights for The New York Times Magazine. If you’ve come across her work, you’ll know she’s one of the clearest voices reporting on ongoing school segregation in U.S. public schools.

On the interplay of race in U.S. culture:

“I don’t think there’s any beat you can cover in America that race is not intertwined with—environment, politics, business, housing, you name it. So, whatever beat you put me on, this is what I was going to cover because I think it’s just intrinsic. If you’re not being blind to what’s on your beat, then it’s part of the beat.”

And on the kind of reporting she likes to see (no, she’s not a big fan of opinionated bloggers):

I like to see people bent on the ground digging up real stories. and doing original work. That’s what’s most important. I don’t think people need to constantly hear what I think about things. My job is to show people the worlds that other people are having to live in. Particularly worlds that segregation makes invisible to many Americans.


If you have the time and your interest in piqued, check out the 2015 This American Life report discussed in the interview, The Problem We All Live With. It’ll help put the reasons why efforts to desegregate public schools failed (even though they actually hadn’t) in their proper context.


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