paper trail

ProPublica experiments with plain language in mainstream news; Jamaica Kincaid’s “American Snow Dome”

Jamaica Kincaid. Photo: Sofie Sigrinn

At the New York Review of Books, David Treuer looks at a recent history of the Lakota people. Pekka Hämäläinen’s Lakota America “emphasizes that to understand American history it is vital to understand Lakota—and, by extension, Native American—history; that rather than existing in a state of constant first contact marked by incomprehension and surprise, Native nations and the American nation knew each other, grew up and around and through each other; that contact between the Lakota and European powers wasn’t one-sided and didn’t necessarily spell doom for Indians.”

PEN America has announced the four pairs from its prison-writing mentorship program to receive the L’Engle-Rahman Prize for Mentorship.

Following an investigation of his actions during a Zoom call last month, Jeffrey Toobin has been fired by the New Yorker.

For The Root, Anne Branigan reports that Gayle King and Oprah will be the first to sit down with former President Barack Obama to discuss his memoir, A Promised Land, when it comes out next week. Branigin notes that Obama’s interview with King will also be his first since Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won the presidential election.

At the Paris Review Daily blog, Jamaica Kincaid takes us “Inside the American Snow Dome.”

A recent investigation into the treatment of people with developmental disabilities in Arizona has been translated into plain language, making it more accessible by using common words, short sentences, and clear sentence structure. According to NiemanLab, the report is apparently the first time a plain language version of a story has been produced by an outlet that is not specifically produced by, or for, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.