Culture

The 'Rapacious' Business Model That Rules the Church of Scientology

When L. Ron Hubbard's Dianetcs enterprise collapsed, he told his wife that the only way to make money was to found a religion, according to the HBO documentary, Going Clear.

5 Ways to Bring Fairness Into College Basketball

March Madness now brings in more cash than the Super Bowl, but its star players won't see a dime. 

The Many Ways the University of Oklahoma Fraternity Scandal Reveals America's Racism Denial

Bill Kristol blames rap music. And the fraternity's lawyer says the racist chanters were "tarred and feathered." (Yes, he did.)

Historian as History-Maker: Isabel Wilkerson Calls All of America to Account for Racial Injustice

The acclaimed author of The Warmth of Other Suns is not about to let the North off the hook. A conversation with the chronicler of the Great Migration.

America's Only Black Piano-Maker Soldiers on Through Slights and Triumphs

When musician Warren Shadd decided to manufacture a line of high-tech pianos based on his own designs but with little capital, everyone thought he was crazy.

'Selma' and 'The Birth of a Nation': A Tale of Two Films, 100 Years Apart

A century after D.W. Griffith's artful abomination, Selma succeeds by telling the true story of everyday people who come together to achieve the improbable.

What Women Need

Can women translate symbolic victories into durable progress on multiple fronts, from financial status to physical safety?

A Talent for Storytelling

Rick Perlstein tells how Reagan imagined his way into the American psyche.

Beyoncé Misses the Point of What Gospel Music Means to Black Americans

The selection of Queen Bey to deliver a song identified with Mahalia Jackson ignored the importance of spiritual conveyance in the music that moved a people to action. 

How to Be a Walking 'Confirmation Bias' (Role Model: Mia Love)

It's easy to write off Mia Love and Allen West but these very visible blacks hurt the quest for equality.

We Let Bill Cosby Into Our Homes, So He Owes Us an Explanation

America's once-favorite TV dad needs to take his own advice.

The End of the Lavender Ghetto

As gays and lesbians gain acceptance, they are moving away from the old neighborhoods that long epitomized gay culture.

Watch Party Dispatch: Poets and Pols Gather For Some Pointed Words

In which Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton mingles with constituents and the verse is a bit searing.

Red State, Blue State: Polarization and the American Situation

The country is stuck but it is not stationary. Some things are changing—just not at the federal level.

After Ferguson, 'Dear White People' Arrives Right On Time

Then again, any time would have been right. Systemic white privilege and the language of racism is an American tradition as old as the republic.

Pages