European American/Whites

A Child’s Eye View

In South Carolina during Jim Crow, Cynthia Changaris is baffled by why black people get to ride in the “best part” of the bus with the great view out the rear window or why her playmate dies because he couldn’t get to a “colored hospital” in time.

A Journey Story

Patricia Coffie, learns that traveling to understanding is part of traveling from one physical place to another.   Some colleagues give her feedback on a joke she told and help her realize that change, based on understanding, takes action.

A Real Friend

A funny and touching story about two girls who live in a socially divided village in the heart of the industrial English Midlands. On one unusual day, they transcend the barrier that separates them the joy of  that brief friendship is long remembered.

A Yiddish King Lear

Judith remembers that her grandfather, Oscar Markowitz, was an actor in the Yiddish Theatre at the turn of the 20th Century. A story about hard choices, hopes, dreams, racial persecution, and love!

Afternoon with Rachel, Holocaust survivor

Gene speaks with a Holocaust survivor who asks, “Tell me about your people?” Gene tells her of the 1835 Indian Removal Act and how his ancestors were forced to leave their homes and walk 800 miles through the winter.

Albuquerque

Growing up in New York City, Gerald Fierst’s neighborhood was Jewish. But when he went to visit cousins who had retired to Albuquerque, he discovered that “we all look alike when we are the other.”

Another Way West

At age 16, in 1855, Jane’s great-grandfather sailed from N.Y. around the Horn to San Francisco where he was stranded! He took a job with Wells Fargo as a treasure agent in the Sacramento-Shasta Mining District, the home of the Shasta Indian Nation.

Bartholomew

An African American man is a church custodian and familiar figure to the congregation. However, when it’s rumored that African Americans will be attending church, suddenly the pleasant veneer of acceptance is exposed.

Beach Drowning and Race Riot

In researching housing history in segregated Chicago, Sue learns about the 1919 Chicago race riot. She wonders why she has not heard the story before now.

Black & White: Stereotypes and Privilege

Diggsy Twain, an African American man, tells a friend about an encounter he had on a train and what he did to stop the stereotype that all black men are angry. Then after telling his story he realizes anyone can stereotype the “other.”

Brush the Dirt from My Heart

Connie Regan-Blake was invited to Uganda and speaks to many women about the horrors of war and how they cope with the ravages of AIDS. She listened to their profound and transformative stories. This is one out of many…

Changing Neighborhoods

Sue grew up hearing about “them” – the people who would come and take her and her neighbors’ homes in their all-white neighborhood. When her family watched the Friday night fights, it was made clear who was “the other” and who was “us.”

Christmas Food Drive

During a high school Christmas food drive in 1965, Sue brings canned goods to a family living in Cabrini Green housing projects. Isn’t that a good thing? Why would the family resent her?

Construction

Storyteller Jim May relates his days working his way through school on a union construction crew; as well as the unions roll in softening the effects of classism and racism.

Davy Crockett

As a five-year-old, Sue met a boy her age who was different from her. Sue’s mother subtly lets Sue know that she is not to be friends with the boy.

Dr. King Came to Town

It was August 12th, 1966 and Dr. Martin Luther King was marching through Susan O’Halloran’s south Chicago neighborhood. At the same time, the KKK heard the news and arrived in the same neighborhood, splitting it into two.

Evacuation

What if the U.S. went to war with your country of origin? Anne Shimojima tells of the difficult days following the attack on Pearl Harbor, when her Japanese-American family were forced to evacuate their home.

Four Moments

Loren learned what White privilege means when he was willing to look at how it worked every day – in a traffic stop, at the store and in community meetings. Once Loren saw it, how could he not question, “This is what we live with?”

Grandma’s Story

After her Grandmother passes, Sue searches for her Grandmother’s story. Her exploration takes her into Irish American history and, eventually, to Ireland to find her Grandmother’s childhood home.

Gumballs and the Brothers Three

A Baptist, a Muslim, and a Jew visit a church three years in a row to promote interreligious dialogue and understanding. The transformation of one angry congregant through the image of a gumball machine provides an enduring lesson for everyone.

How Do You Say Blueberry in Spanish

Antonio explores the challenges and joys of trying to raise a bilingual child. As anxious new parents, Antonio and his wife ask, “Are two languages better than one?” and find humor along the way.

I Deserve To Be Here

Emily Hooper Lansana reminices about how her life would be if she believed what others told her. In this story you will learn what racial justice is allowing everyone the opportunity to same opportunities to succeed.

I Wanted To Be an Indian

Stories about our ancestors help us understand who we are. Encountering troubling revelations about her forebears and their Indian neighbors in colonial New England, Jo Radner asks what it means to tell – and live with – her whole, complex history.

I’m Gonna Let It Shine – It’s In All of Us

Bill Harley gathers a group of musicians together to record an album of Civil Rights freedom songs. However, they learn that they can’t assume they are all on the same page or that underlying emotions and biases aren’t in play.

If You Cut Us, Don’t We Bleed

A white high school student connects racial justice and the anti-war movement. After 4 white students are killed in OH, Norah joins a national strike. Days later, 2 black students are killed in MS. How would her largely white student body respond?

Immigrant Story

This story reveals how a group of immigrants rallied with resilience and ingenuity so that the 7th generation of Chinese Americans thrives today.

In Belfast

Loren travels to North Ireland and is continually asked, “Are you Catholic or Protestant?” By the way that question is asked and answered, layers of cultural assumptions are revealed.

Incarceration

How would the government treat your family if it went to war with your ancestors’ country of origin? Anne Shimojima describes life in an incarceration camp for her Japanese-American family during World War II.

It was 1966 in Warrensburg, Missouri

On Joyce’s first day of college she met Catherine. Catherine was Black and Joyce was Caucasian. Their friendship was not a normal sight for small town, Missouri in 1966. How could Joyce ever really know the prejudice Catherine faced?

John Henry

This is a true story set in rural McHenry County, Illinois in the 1920s and 1930s about John Henry Higler, a man who claimed to be former slave who assimilated into an all white farm community.

Learning at the Dinner Table

Bill’s mother and father came from families at the opposite ends of the political spectrum. One Thanksgiving dinner, Bill’s father stands up to in-laws making bigoted comments and Bill learns a valuable lesson about taking a stand.

Looking at My Yearbooks

Looking at high school yearbooks, Shanta reflects on the changes of her childhood neighborhood and as an adult, with a larger understanding of the times – blockbusting and other pressures – the sting of being “the other” remains.

Looking for Papito

As a Cuban and Irish American child, Antonio deals with being “too ethnic” or “not ethnic enough”. By trial and error and with the support of his family, Antonio reclaims all of his ethnic heritage and his Spanish language.

Milwaukee BBQ

Loren who is white goes to a BBQ place in an all black neighborhood and comes to understand prejudice in a direct and personal way.

My Chinese Grandfather

Brenda’s grandfather collects, dries and sells seaweed along the coast of California. When she is older, she finds his ways strange and the work hard, but the two find unique ways of talking and enjoying each other’s company.

My Civil Rights Moment

After the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., Beth realized that the fight for civil rights was happening right in her own home.  When she discovered the prejudice of her family, she had a choice to make. Her family’s beliefs? Or her own?

Navajo Code Talker

During WWII the Navajo Code Talkers created a code that was never broken. But in the past, the Navaho were forced off their reservations into boarding schools where they were told not to speak their language or practice their culture.

Negotiating the Narrows

As a young child in the 1950s, Susan Klein, raised Methodist, was intrigued by the mysterious practices of her Roman Catholic friends and neighbors. Susan’s growing awareness of religious difference and how it might indicate value—someone is better, someone is worse—caused her to understand how some in her community might viewed her friendship with an African American girl.

Next Town

While traveling from California to Lousiana, Diane’s family stops at a restaurant. A “whites only” sign hangs near the door and Diane’s family, all black, must eat in the kitchen. She learns about prejudice and how to keep in high spirits that day.

Onara

Based on a true story, a young girl wonders about the difference between “hakujin” (white people) and “nihonjin” (Japanese people) while in an internment camp in WWII. She speculates as to why hakujin do not onara (a euphemism for “passing gas”).

Passing for WASP

Carol believes: “To build a bridge from one culture into another and make pluralism a cause for celebration, we have to have one foot firmly planted in who we are.” When exploring her Polish and Scottish roots, she wonders, am I living what I teach?

Penny for Your Thoughts

Diane Ferlatte white man at a restaurant and tries to be friendly. When he responds with a grunt she labels him a “mean old white man.” Later she learns his story and the importance of reaching across barriers of race, age and culture.

Raising a Glass to My Teachers

Pam Faro grew up in very white central Wisconsin. Decades later, over a glass of wine with family, she learned that something she’d always done innocently was racially hurtful. How could a class taken way back in high school be of any help?

Searching for My Appalachia: A Modern Jack Tale

In a chance encounter, Kevin Cordi meets someone others might classify as a “redneck.” Cordi begins a short conversation with this very pleasant man named Jack. Jack explains to Cordi about the nature of the term “redneck” and asks, “When did dirt and hard work become something bad?” In that moment, Cordi reconnects with and feels pride in his mountain heritage.

Seeing the Other

One day, 5-year old Arif learns how to play with a dreidel and learns about the differences between Christians and Jews.

Small Town Silence

A wannabe comedian in the suburbs of Pittsburgh finally meets a professional comic who is willing to take him under his wing. Will silence over the discovery of a small town’s nasty racial secret destroy the friendship before it can even begin?

Sparta, Georgia

Gene travels across the country to see the land of his people. Along his journey, he meets a southern white couple on a backcountry dirt road and an old black man in Sparta, Georgia who fought with First Nation men during the Korean War.

Take Me To Your Leader

During the McCarthy witch-hunts (a period of anti-communism intensity), the Cold War and the Space Race, Yvonne Healty describes how we learned to “blend” ethnic identities.

The Dirty Hands at Atwood’s Farm

One day during the 1950’s, a mixed-race couple came to visit the Atwood’s farm in rural Wisconsin. What happened to cause a young girl to question her mother’s response to the couple?

The Immigration Process vs. Pre-Wedding Bliss

To get married, Arianna and her fiancé had to prove that their love was real. Complexity arose as they entered the immigration process. As they hit barrier after barrier, they quickly learned the unpredictablility of US immigration.

The Oberlin Rescue of 1858

John Price escapes from slavery in Kentucky and reached Oberlin, Ohio. There he sees Black shopkeepers and college stuents to he decides to stay. The problem is, a slaver catcher is coming for him.

The Promise: A Lesson in White Privilege

What happens when the warm connection between a black woman and a white woman is broken by insensitivity and unconscious white privilege? Are courage, honesty, forgiveness and hope enough to heal the separation?

The Spirit Survives (Part I — Gertrude Bonnin)

Dovie shares her knowledge of the Indian Boarding School experiement with her daughter and us. She weaves history, biography, autobiography and personal reflection in the story that she never “wanted” to tell. But some stories need to be told…

The Spirit Survives (Part II — Grandpa)

The “Indian Experiment” in education, the government boarding schools, is unknown to many Americans, yet affects us all. Following forty years of study of these stories, Dovie knew she had to share what she’d learned that would be essential to her daughter, and all of us. She weaves history, biography, autobiography and personal reflection in this story that she never “wanted” to tell. But there are some stories that need to be told…

The Story of My Teacher

Kiran reveals his experiences with racism as one of the few brown boys in his town contrasted with the kindness of strangers as well as the inspiration he received from his storyteller teacher, Mr. George.

The Story You Live (John Brown’s Fatal Decision)

Some people live their lives in such a way that the story of their life, after they die, accomplishes what they could not. This little-known story about U.S. abolitionist John Brown shows us his last, most courageous – and most effective – decision.

Three Assassinations: Kennedy, King, Kennedy

Megan was confused when her 9th grade classmates reacted differently to the assassination of President Kennedy than her family did. Who was right? She learns to listen to her heart to find what was truth for her.

Three Sisters

In 1988 Jim and his wife lived with a family in Nicaragua. Jim learned about gratitude by watching how a young girl appreciated something as simple as a single piece of gum or a sheet of paper.

Too Crazy to Know Better

Jay O’Callahan shares storyteller Sandra Harris’s story of her involvement in the Civil Rights struggle in Birmingham, Alabama in 1963.

Vindication

Michael and some classmates hold a walk out due to limited black history curricula and are expelled. Decades later, Michael is brought back to the school to receive his high school diploma and the school’s gratitude.

You Are Good for Him

Friendly lunchtime religious debates with Sarah Beth’s high school band friends turned serious when her religious identity was called into question. Would she be able to lose her religion but keep her friends?

You Never Know What the End Will Be

In 1972 Diane marries “outside her race” and her mother-in-law refuses to attend the wedding, among other things. What happens to the family’s relationship afterward is anyone’s guess. A story of hope and a reminder that love conquers many things.