The New Social Environment#117

Aarti Shahani with Rev. Dr. Donna Schaper


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Award-winning journalist and author Aarti Shahani will join Rev. Dr. Donna Schaper for a conversation on Shahani’s experience growing up as an undocumented child in America, and the issue of immigration and beyond in our country. We’ll conclude with a poetry reading from Ed Foster.

In this talk

Aarti Shahani

Aarti Shahani
Aarti Shahani is an award-winning journalist and author. She spent her twenties organizing prisoners. Then she pivoted to business journalism and enjoyed a meteoric rise at NPR, as Silicon Valley correspondent. Her first book, Here We Are: American Dreams, American Nightmares (Celadon Books, 2019), a tragic comedy about growing up migrant in America. Aarti’s reporting has received awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, a regional Edward R. Murrow Award, and an Investigative Reporters & Editors Award. Aarti lives in Oakland, California with her nephew. She loves storytelling and justice. You can read more about her at

Rev. Dr. Donna Schaper

A photo of Rev. Dr. Donna Schaper
Rev. Donna Schaper has been Senior Minister of Judson Memorial Church since January of 2006. She was formerly at Coral Gables Congregational Church in Miami and before that at Yale University and teaches leadership at the Hartford Seminary. As an elder, she is passionately concerned about leaving the next generation well-prepared for all they have to face. She has written over 35 books including Approaching End of Life: A Practical and Spiritual Guide (2015), Grace at Table: Small Spiritual Solutions to Large Material Problems, Solving Everything (2013), to her most recent book I Heart Francis: Letters to the Pope from an Unlikely Admirer (2016), among many others.

The Rail has a tradition of ending our conversations with a poetry reading, and we’re fortunate to have Ed Foster reading.

Ed Foster

Ed Foster
Edward Foster has published 17 books of poetry plus assorted volumes in history, biography, and criticism. He lives near the Vermont border in Massachusetts, where he tends to his fish and weeds his gardens on a steep hill that was an island in a prehistoric lake.

❤️ 🌈 We'd like to thank the The Terra Foundation for American Art for making these daily conversations possible, and for their support of our growing archive.