107 episodes

Why are there so many book clubs and so few article clubs? Let’s change that! Join The Highlighter Article Club, where we read, annotate, and discuss one outstanding article every month on race, education, or culture.

articleclub.substack.com

The Highlighter Article Club Mark Isero

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 24 Ratings

Why are there so many book clubs and so few article clubs? Let’s change that! Join The Highlighter Article Club, where we read, annotate, and discuss one outstanding article every month on race, education, or culture.

articleclub.substack.com

    #377: An interview with E. Alex Jung, author of “The Spectacular Life of Octavia Butler”

    #377: An interview with E. Alex Jung, author of “The Spectacular Life of Octavia Butler”

    Happy Thursday, loyal readers. This month at Article Club, we’ve been focusing on “The Spectacular Life of Octavia Butler,” by the talented writer E. Alex Jung.
    If you haven’t read the article yet, I urge you to do so. It’s excellent. Even if you are a newbie to Ms. Butler’s work, you’ll appreciate how Mr. Jung honors her and her impact. There aren’t many great profiles out there about Ms. Butler. Now, thanks to Mr. Jung, we have one.
    Also: I hope you’ll join us to discuss the article on January 29, 2:00 - 3:30 pm PT on Zoom. There’s still time to sign up! Article Clubbers are kind and thoughtful and welcoming. Our conversations are always in small, intimate, facilitated groups.
    I’m excited to share that Sarai and I had the opportunity to interview Mr. Jung a couple weeks ago about his brilliant article. Sarai took the lead this time – which I was very happy about, given that she’s an expert of Ms. Butler’s work. We talked about a number of topics, including:
    * why Mr. Jung decided to focus on Ms. Butler as a subject
    * how reading her personal journals influenced Mr. Jung’s approach to the piece
    * why contracts (professional and personal) were so important to Ms. Butler
    * manifesting (of course)
    * how Ms. Butler pushes us to imagine a better world
    I hope you take a listen and let me know what you think.
    Thank you for listening to this week’s issue. Hope you liked it. 😀
    To our 3 new subscribers — James, Rachel, and Bria – I hope you find the newsletter a solid addition to your email inbox. To our long-time subscribers (Ronald! Reginald! Ryan!), you’re pretty great. VIP Camille, thank you for sharing the newsletter and getting the word out.
    If you like The Highlighter Article Club, please help it grow. I really appreciate your support. Here are two ways you can help out:
    ❤️ Become a paid subscriber, like Rachel and Helene (thank you!). You’ll join an esteemed group of readers who value the mission of The Highlighter Article Club. Plus you’ll receive surprise perks and prizes. (The hoodie is next!)
    📬 Invite your friends. Know someone who’s kind, thoughtful, and loves to read? Share with them today’s issue and urge them to subscribe. Word of mouth is by far the best way to strengthen our reading community. Thank you very much for spreading the word.
    On the other hand, if you no longer want to receive this newsletter, please feel free to unsubscribe. See you next Thursday at 9:10 am PT!


    This is a public episode. If you’d like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit articleclub.substack.com/subscribe

    • 26 min
    #369: An interview with Eli Saslow, author of “An American Education”

    #369: An interview with Eli Saslow, author of “An American Education”

    Happy Thursday, loyal readers. This month at Article Club, we’ve been focusing on “An American Education,” by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Eli Saslow.
    If you haven’t read the article yet, I highly encourage you to do so. It’s outstanding. It’s about how the superintendent of a school district in Bullhead City, Arizona, tries to deal with its severe teacher shortage by attracting top-notch educators from the Philippines. It’s also about one of those top-notch educators – Rose Jean Obreque – whose skills and optimism and high expectations and growth mindset unfortunately are no match for American middle school students and their shenanigans.
    It’s a depressing story, no doubt, but it nonetheless tells the truth of what teachers and students are currently experiencing in schools across the country. I hope you’ll join us to discuss the article on November 20, 2:00 - 3:30 pm PT on Zoom.
    I’m also very happy to share that I had the opportunity to interview Mr. Saslow yesterday about his brilliant article. We talked about a number of topics, including:
    * how writing the piece reaffirmed his deep respect and appreciation for teachers
    * how it felt to be in a chaotic classroom, especially as a parent
    * how of course it’s hard to recruit teachers when you’re paying them $38,000
    * how he approaches writing about what it’s like for people who are “in the swirl of our country’s biggest problems”
    * and yes, spoiler alert, that ending (wow)
    I hope you take a listen and let me know what you think.
    Thank you for reading this week’s issue of The Highlighter Article Club. Hope you liked it. Feel free to share your thoughts and feedback. I’d love to hear from you.
    To our five new subscribers – including Chris, Daniel, and Rebecca – I hope you find the newsletter a solid addition to your email inbox. To our long-time subscribers (Irene! Izzy! Isis!), you’re pretty great, too. Loyal reader Janet, thank you for sharing the newsletter and getting the word out.
    If you like The Highlighter Article Club, please help it grow. I really appreciate your support. Here are some ways you can help out:
    📬 Invite your friends. Know someone who’s kind, thoughtful, and loves to read? Share with them today’s issue and urge them to subscribe. Word of mouth is by far the best way to strengthen our reading community. Thank you very much for spreading the word.
    ❤️ Become a paid subscriber for $3 a month, like Chris and Cal (thank you!). You’ll join an esteemed group of readers who value the mission of The Highlighter Article Club. Plus you’ll receive surprise perks and prizes. (A new T-shirt is coming at HHH.)
    ☕️ Buy me a coffee to express your appreciation of the newsletter
    On the other hand, if you no longer want to receive this newsletter, please feel free to unsubscribe. See you next Thursday at 9:10 am PT!


    This is a public episode. If you’d like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit articleclub.substack.com/subscribe

    • 30 min
    #365: An interview with Mitchell S. Jackson, author of “Looking for Clarence Thomas”

    #365: An interview with Mitchell S. Jackson, author of “Looking for Clarence Thomas”

    I never forget how lucky I am to be doing Article Club. Not only have I met so many of you, and built a thoughtful reading community together, but I’ve also had the opportunity to interview the most talented authors out there.
    Like, the most talented authors out there.
    This month is no exception. Some of you might say, It’s the pinnacle, actually.
    That’s because Mitchell S. Jackson — the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “Twelve Minutes and a Life” (please read it if you haven’t) — generously said yes to participating in an interview about his masterful recent article, “Looking for Clarence Thomas.” We’re discussing it on Sunday, Oct. 23, 2:00 - 3:30 pm PT. Join us!
    What do you do when you get to talk to someone whose work you deeply admire?
    In my case, I get nervous. And prepare. And re-read. And annotate. And reach out to my friend and colleague Sarai Bordeaux and ask her to join. (She said yes, too.)
    But it turns out, I didn’t need to be afraid at all. Mr. Jackson was kind and gracious from the start. He laughed that I insisted on calling him Mr. Jackson. And right from the first question, everything felt natural, like we were talking to a friend rather than to a famous writer whose prose is changing the canon (Sarai’s words) of longform nonfiction.
    We talked about a number of topics, including:
    * how he didn’t want to write about Clarence Thomas
    * how his editor persuaded him
    * how his trip to Pin Point inspired the piece’s opening
    * how James Baldwin’s writing helped him understand Mr. Thomas, and
    * how Mr. Thomas is a man of deep contradictions, whose time on the Supreme Court has caused “dramatically malevolent things to wide swaths of Americans”
    Most of all, though, Mr. Jackson talked about the craft of writing, how if he’s going to spend months on a feature story, he wants to push himself, he wants to break convention, he wants to do something new with form.
    He said, “I’m very much concerned with the sentence. I’m almost concerned with the sentence over the story. And so the benefit of writing nonfiction is, You don’t have to invent the scenes, but the kind of ethos of wanting to make beautiful sentences, that’s really what I want to do.”
    I hope you take a listen, whether or not you’ve already read “Looking for Clarence Thomas.” I’d love to hear what you think of the conversation! Feel free to leave a comment here. What was thought provoking? What surprised you?


    This is a public episode. If you’d like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit articleclub.substack.com/subscribe

    • 28 min
    #361: “How much was magic? How much was plunder?”

    #361: “How much was magic? How much was plunder?”

    This month at Article Club, we’ve been diving into “A Kingdom From Dust,” by Mark Arax — a big, bold, outstanding piece about the magic and plunder of California. I’ve been hearing from many of you about how much you are appreciating the article. If you haven’t read it yet, I highly encourage you to do so. And if you find the piece moving, I urge you to sign up for our online discussion on Sept. 25 at 2 pm PT.

    I’m very honored to announce that this week’s issue of The Highlighter is dedicated to a conversation I had with Mr. Arax a few days ago. We talked about a range of topics, including: his love-hate relationship with California; how water politics determine who succeeds and who suffers in the state; how meeting William Saroyan influenced his writing; how he approaches reporting with compassion and nuance; and what we need to do to make sure California survives.

    I hope you take a listen, whether or not you’ve already read “A Kingdom from Dust.” Hearing from Mr. Arax made me proud to be a Californian, even if our state is facing potentially catastrophic climate calamity.

    The interview also got me excited to order Mr. Arax’s latest book, The Dreamt Land: Chasing Water and Dust Across California, which received rave reviews, including recommendations from Linda Ronstadt and Mark Bittman.

    I’d love to hear what you think of the conversation! Feel free to leave a comment here. What was thought provoking? What surprised you?


    This is a public episode. If you’d like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit articleclub.substack.com/subscribe

    • 30 min
    #357: Interview with Josh Dzieza, author of “Revolt of the Delivery Workers”

    #357: Interview with Josh Dzieza, author of “Revolt of the Delivery Workers”

    This month, we’re gathering online on Aug. 28, 2:00 - 3:30 pm PT, to talk about “Revolt of the Delivery Workers,” by Josh Dzieza. I got a chance to interview Mr. Dzieza a couple weeks ago, and he thoughtfully shared how he reported the story and how the 65,000 delivery workers have fought for better wages, working conditions, safety measures, on tighter regulations of delivery apps.

    I hope you take a listen! You can click on the play button above or you can subscribe to The Highlighter Article Club Podcast on your phone.

    If the interview interests you, there’s still time to join our discussion on Aug. 28. We’re a kind, thoughtful group of people who enjoy thought-provoking conversations. You can sign up by clicking the button below or you can email me with questions.

    If you like The Highlighter Article Club, please help it grow. I really appreciate your support. One great way that you can help out is by reviewing the podcast on Apple Podcasts. Thank you!


    This is a public episode. If you’d like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit articleclub.substack.com/subscribe

    • 27 min
    Interview: Joshua Prager, author of “The Roe Baby”

    Interview: Joshua Prager, author of “The Roe Baby”

    Hi there, Article Clubbers! This month, we’re reading, annotating, and discussing “The Roe Baby,” by Joshua Prager. I’m pleased that so many of you have signed up to discuss the article on Sunday, June 26. I am looking forward to it!
    A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to interview Mr. Prager. It was an honor. Thanks to his generosity and thoughtfulness, it was a great conversation. We spoke about a number of topics, including how he got interested in Roe v. Wade, how he found Shelley Thornton, how being a man affected his writing, how the politics of abortion are much more extreme now than they were 50 years ago, and how Norma McCorvey cared deeply about her legacy.
    I hope you take a listen!
    After listening to the interview, feel free to add your thoughts in the comments. What’s one insight that resonated with you? What’s a question you were left with?
    I look forward to our discussion on Sunday. See you then! If you have any questions, hit reply or click here.


    This is a public episode. If you’d like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit articleclub.substack.com/subscribe

    • 34 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
24 Ratings

24 Ratings

ireneisc ,

Outstanding interviews

I like the articles and I like listening to the interviews even more.

shrevemath ,

Great interviews and thoughtful interviewer!

My favorite part about this podcast is listening to Mark’s interviews with the members of Article Club. They are all very thoughtful people, and they inspire me to read more. I wish these conversations would become a more regular part of the show!

jjgams ,

Great podcast for educators!

What I like most about The Highlighter Article Club podcast is that it connects me with well-written articles that expand my thinking. I don’t have time to scour the Internet for the best writing out there, but Mark does, and he finds the most thoughtful authors to be in conversation. I am proud to be part of Article Club!

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