for those of you that have never heard of it, StoryCorps is a nonprofit project of sharing and listening to stories from people of all different backgrounds and beliefs in america. the stories range from a fond conversation between a mother and her adopted queer son to gripping and sincere painful memories of losing loved ones. possibly my favourite part about the project is how remarkable it feels to really listen to people. they have a small (but growing!) collection of animated versions of the stories on their youtube, and then the full 50,000+ recordings on their website.
they also have a wonderful 20 minute animated story compilation.
Listening Is an Act of Love
I can’t endorse storycorps enough. For anyone interested, here are some of my absolute favorites.
The three shown in the images are from their 9/11 series: Always a Family, about a woman who lost her ex-husband in the attacks. John and Joe, about a retired firefighter who lost his two sons on the same day. And She was the One, about a burly Italian man from Brooklyn who met and lost the love of his life.
Some other favorites:
Facundo the Great Ramon Sanchez tells the story of Facundo, the only boy at his 1950s school who didn’t get his name changed to be more “American.”
"No More Questions!" Cheng Wang and his dauther Chen bring his mother Kay in to discuss her amazing life with her before her death.
A Family Man Samuel Black tells the story of his father, who worked long, late hours in Cincinnati to keep his family going.
The Road Home The son of a local mayor who grew to inherit alcoholism gets saved by a new friend when he realizes he needs to get sober or die.
Sunday at Rocco’s Nicholas Petron tells the story of his Uncle Rocco, and his family who all lived in the same building, and how the “upgrade” of the neighborhood eventually split them apart.
The Icing on the Cake Connie and Bianca Alvarez, a daughter and mother, talk about Bianca’s struggles immigrating to America from Mexico and how it inspired Connie to do her very best in life.
Danny and Annie An older couple tells their beautiful love story towards the end of Danny’s life.
Q&A Sarah Littman talks with her autistic son, Joshua, and tells him just how much he’s changed her life for the better.
Miss Devine Cousins Cherie and James talk about their Sunday School teacher growing up in Florida.
A Good Man Bryan Wilmoth talks about being excommunicated by his family for being gay, and how he came to be a guardian for his multiple siblings.
Eyes on the Stars Ronald McNair, who died in the Challenger disaster, is honored by his brother with the tale of how Ronald went to a “whites only” library and refused to be denied a book.
To RP Salazar, with Love Ruben P Salazar in Texas gets an email meant for Rachel P Salazar in Thailand. Their love story begins from there.