The story of how common and perfectly legal police interrogation procedures, procedures without violence or torture, were able to get an average fourteen-year-old suburban kid to confess to murdering his own sister...even though DNA evidence later proved that he hadn't done the crime.
Host Ira Glass plays tape from the documentary TV series American High of a teenager fighting with his parents about which car he can take out that night. Every family has its own way of fighting and its own particular family dynamic, and if things go terribly bad, it's often hard to figure how the bad things could've been prevented.
Ira talks with students from rival high schools, Glenbrook North and Glenbrook South.
Producer Julie Snyder reports on a Palestinian teenager from Chicago who explains why everything you think you know about the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks is wrong.
The story of two amateurs meeting the pros. One is a teenager in New Jersey; the other, our reporter.
An 18-year-old named Tito talks about how he didn't have a choice about certain things in his life, especially his feelings and dreams...and his feelings about Eminem.
Over the last ten years in Los Angeles, there's been a noticeable increase in the number of transsexual teenagers, kids who were born as boys but live as girls, and vice versa. Cris Beam has spent the last two years getting to know these kids, and tells the story of two of them, Foxxjazell and Ariel.
Host Ira Glass talks with contributor Adam Davidson about how Adam's teenage diaries are filled with his dream of someday becoming the prime minister of a country where he does not even reside.
A high school boy explains how prom is the culmination of his effort to get in with a cool group of people.
Susan Burton reports on Prom Night 2001 in Hoisington, Kansas, a town of about 3,000. While the seniors danced, a tornado hit the town, destroying about a third of it.
Host Ira Glass talks with Francine Pascal, who's written or invented the plot lines for over 700 books for teenagers in the various Sweet Valley High series....Sweet Valley Kids, Sweet Valley Twins, Sweet Valley University, Sweet Valley Senior Year. She explains why a prom story is a must for teen movies and TV shows.
For a more typical view of prom night, we hear prom night at Chicago's Taft High School.
In this Act, we argue that epicenter of prom genius—the place where America's prom future is being born—is the town of Racine, Wisconsin. In Racine, they've added one ingredient to prom that takes it to a whole new level of intensity.
Sylvia becomes the first person in her Mexican-American family to go away to college, at a predominantly white school in upstate New York.
Lots of babysitting is done by family members. Hillary Frank reports on what can happen when a teenaged son is put in charge of his younger brothers.
Myron Jones and his sister Carol Bove explain what happened when they were teenagers, and they ended up babysitting children who didn't exist.
In this act, we hear from the rowdier, drunker late-night patrons of the Golden Apple. A guy walks in with two young women, hoping to go home with one of them.
Host Ira Glass talks with Bennett Miller and Matt Futterman about a campaign for student government that changed the way student elections were done in Mamaroneck High School back in 1985. Futterman, in the waning days of his campaign, tried a radical tactic: A TV ad.
There's little in adult life that can hurt as much as a character assassination attack when it happens in junior high school. We hear the story of how one boy organizes the entire school against his former best friend, a guy named Bob Cucuzza.
When Jessica Robinson was sent to adult prison at the age of 14, the state did such a terrible job taking care of her that several women—an embezzler, a convicted murderer, and some thieves—stepped in to mother her. Alex Kotlowitz reports.
A story about the Broadway show Rent, the thrill of sitting close to the stage...and the evil it can lead to.
A high school student explains the intricacies of a four-year crush, and declares that having a crush can be better than having a boyfriend.
Here in America, here's how we interact with our political candidates: We dispatch middlemen to the scene, they listen to what the candidates say, they research the candidates' backgrounds, and they tell us what they think is most important. Those middlemen, of course, are journalists.
Alex Blumberg tells the story of citizens who feel perfectly connected to their candidate of choice. Citizens who feel inspired by him.