Culture

Clockwise from top left: Pullman Porters, Condoleezza Rice in American Creed, Pinkalicious and Peterrific. Images: APT, Citizen Films, WGBH

What to Watch in February

The story and legacy of the Pullman Porters, a documentary about a tradition enjoyed by our neighbors to the north, delightful kids' shows that are great for adults, a timely film for these divided times, and Frontline in the Middle East. February has a lot to offer.
Mindy Brugman by Mt. St. Helens in Ann Curry's We'll Meet Again. Photo: Rebecca Burrell/Blink Films

The Selfless Volcanologist Who Saved a Life at Mt. St. Helens

Mindy Brugman was a doctoral student studying glaciers on Mt. St. Helens when it erupted in 1980 and avoided the blast because of a scientist's warning. Now, nearly four decades later, she wants to express proper gratitude, on Ann Curry's show We'll Meet Again.
David M. Kennedy and Condoleezza Rice in American Creed

What Does it Mean to Be American?

In the new documentary American Creed, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David M. Kennedy investigate American ideals, while citizen activists such as Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon attempt to realize their own conception of those ideals.
Downton Abbey. Photo: Carnival Film and Television Limited

What to Stream on PBS

Whether you want to binge-watch some of your favorite period dramas, skip ahead of the broadcast schedule for Victoria, or catch up on great episodes or programs that you missed, we're recommending some of our most popular shows to stream.
Clockwise from left: Oscar Zeta Acosta, the Brown Buffalo; Bill Nye; Walled city of Lahore, Pakistan. Photos: Annie Leibovitz; David Alvarado/Structure Films; Nutopia Ltd

7 Exciting New Shows Coming Soon

Take a look at not-to-be-missed programs airing between now and the end of April, from a timely show discussing the #MeToo movement, to a documentary about a beloved Science Guy, to Benedict Cumberbatch's return to Masterpiece.
Academy Awards on PBS

PBS Programs Nominated for a 2018 Academy Award

Two films that aired on PBS were nominated today for an Academy Award in the Documentary category: Abacus: Small Enough to Jail, and Last Men in Aleppo. Revisit our various interviews with the directors about their films.
Amy Brent at a bookstore. Photo: Courtesy Stuart Brent Children’s Book Club

Hunting for the Treasure of – and in – Books

“I have spent most of my life in a perennial quest to convince people that reading a book is actually worthwhile,” Amy Brent says. In her show Amy's Book Hunt, she proves that books can be exciting by tracking down rare books in unlikely places.
'The Interview Show with Mark Bazer' at the Hideout in Chicago. Photo: Caitrin Hughes

The Nobel Prize, 'Top Chef,' and HBO on 'The Interview Show'

In the first half of the new season of The Interview Show, Mark Bazer sits down with some outstanding guests with Chicago connections, including a Nobel Prize-winning economist, a Top Chef alum, and a screenwriter whose show was just picked up by HBO. 
Ann Curry in We'll Meet Again; James Baldwin at the March on Washington; The Way to Andina. Photos: David Turnley; Dan Budnik; The Way to Andina

What to Watch in January

Sure, Victoria returns with a second season this month. But there are also some worthwile other shows: a powerful documentary about black history using James Baldwin's words, a heartfelt series from Ann Curry, and a curious local tale about a long-lost opera.
Nina Chanel Abney with one of her paintings. Photo: Courtesy Articulate

Spotlighting Artists with Chicago Connections

Articulate with Jim Cotter offers a look inside the minds of some outstanding and innovative artists, musicians, dancers, and authors. Unsurprisingly, many of them have Chicago connections - discover them all here.
A Kwanzaa table at Chicago's DuSable Museum of African American History, including a kinara

The Communitarianism of Kwanzaa

Kwanzaa "instills the concept of family in younger generations, and teaches who we as African Americans were, what we went through, and what we have achieved.” Learn more, courtesy the DuSable Museum of African American History.
The Burning of the Clocks in Brighton, England

The Longest Night of the Year

Cultures across the world have celebrated the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year, and its heralding of change. From ancient peoples in Peru, Ireland, and Egypt to continuing or modern traditions in England, China, and Iran, learn about the festivities.
Studs Terkel Christmas and Holidays

How People Celebrate Christmas Around the World, with Studs Terkel

What Christmas traditions do different cultures, from Brazilians to Slavs to African Americans, have to celebrate the holidays? Hear global folk singers and a legendary children's librarian discuss festive customs with Studs Terkel.
The West Yorkshire moors in Sally Wainwright's Bronte biopic To Walk Invisible. Photo: Matt Squire/BBC and MASTERPIECE

The Land That Inspired the Brontës, 'Downton Abbey,' and Sally Wainwright

What do Last Tango in Halifax, the Brontë sisters, the Wars of the Roses, cute terriers, and Downton Abbey have in common? They're all grounded in the north English region of Yorkshire. Explore the outsize influence of Yorkshire on culture and history.
St. Lucia Festival of Lights

How Swedes Celebrate Light at the Darkest Time of the Year

In Scandinavia and especially Sweden, the feast day of Saint Lucia is an important celebration of light during the short days of winter. How do Swedes, Chicagoans, and Nobel Prize winners enjoy the feast day?
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