Washington, D.C. (September 15, 2015)— In the spring of 2014, Ta-Nehisi Coates made a powerful “Case for Reparations” in the pages of The Atlantic. Now Coates is back on the cover of the magazine’s October issue, with a follow-up piece, “The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration,” which takes an unflinching look at how the deep reach of America’s criminal-justice system have affected black families. Focusing on Detroit and Baltimore, Coates traces the historical roots of the policies that have led to America’s carceral state and urges policymakers to change a damaging system. It is The Atlantic’s longest article in more than a decade.
The digital edition of the piece at TheAtlantic.com includes dozens of embedded annotations by Coates, offering deeper explanations and historical references. In conjunction with the piece, The Atlantic’s politics team has also published an annotated edition of the famous Moynihan Report from 1965—“The Negro Family: A Case for National Action”—along with additional accompanying documents. Three original videos from The Atlantic illustrate the effects of mass incarceration.
Also in the October issue: Yoni Appelbaum on why the Constitution itself may be the cause of the political gridlock in Washington; Andrew Moravcsik, the husband of Anne-Marie Slaughter, who wrote the explosive 2012 Atlantic cover story “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All,” makes the case for fathers as lead parents; James Parker wonders why everyone on reality television is getting naked; and Jerry Useem explores why your boss may be irrelevant.