Texas Observer

News, Press Releases

Announcing the Tenth Annual Texas Observer Short Story Contest

This year's judge is Bryan Washington, author of Lot.

Bryan Washington’s 2016 story “Navigation” tells the story of a taqueria worker who gives Spanish lessons to his wealthy white lover. Throughout the story, the narrator navigates lines of race, class, and queerness in Houston.   Washington’s story was a finalist … Read More

News

All of the Observer’s Coronavirus Coverage

Everything we’ve written about the coronavirus pandemic in Texas.

All of the Observer’s Coronavirus Coverage Here’s everything we’ve written about the coronavirus pandemic. Find our full data tracker here. * Portraits of the Pandemic Stories of how ordinary Texans are dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. Read More     … Read More

Hubbard Middle School food service staff members Sherry Scott and Anita Patel serve lunch to a family in the school's parking lot in Tyler, Texas on Monday, March 16, 2020. While schools are shut down because of the coronavirus, Tyler Independent School District Food Services is providing free curbside meals at designated school campuses from March 16-20. to all Tyler ISD students. (Sarah A. Miller/Tyler Morning Telegraph via AP)
Health Care

10 Ways to Help Your Fellow Texans Endure the Coronavirus Pandemic

Give to your local food bank, donate blood, or support an emergency housing fund.

As Texans hunker down, learn to keep our 6 feet of “social distance,” and gradually get used to life in quarantine to reduce the spread of COVID-19, many of our neighbors, friends, and loved ones are already struggling.  Hundreds of … Read More

Culture

Seven Austin Workers on How They’re Scrambling After the SXSW Cancellation

Gig workers reported more than $2 million in lost wages after the festival was called off.

Thousands of Austinites depend on South by Southwest for income, and many are still reeling after the event was officially canceled last week due to coronavirus fears. SXSW laid off a third of its full-time staff, with an anonymous employee … Read More

A gentrified street in East Austin.
News, The Issue

The Gentrification of Texas

As the cost of housing skyrockets, Texans are getting pushed out and left behind. The stakes couldn’t be higher.

The Gentrification of Texas As the cost of housing skyrockets, Texans are getting pushed out and left behind. The stakes couldn’t be higher. In early 2020, half of Texas adults reported that they were spending too much on housing and … Read More

News, Topics

The Best Texas Observer Longform Stories of the 2010s

We rounded up some of our hardest hitting longreads from the past ten years.

The Best Texas Observer Longform Stories of the 2010s We rounded up some of our hardest hitting longreads from the past ten years. * With 2019 quickly fading, social media was plagued with personal then-and-now posts. On Twitter, side-by-side personal … Read More

The Interview

Texas Observer Founding Editor Ronnie Dugger Reflects on 65 Years of Publication

To celebrate our 65th birthday, we asked our founding editor about where the Observer has been and what he thinks about its future.

On December, 13, 1954, Ronnie Dugger published the first issue of the Texas Observer. In it, he wrote the newspaper’s founding mission: We will serve no group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it … Read More

David Johnson at Life in the Carceral State.
Criminal Justice

Watch: ‘Life and Death in a Carceral State’

At the Observer’s inaugural live storytelling event, formerly incarcerated advocates were among those sharing their experiences with Texas’ criminal justice system.

What is the real impact of the U.S. criminal justice system? Storytellers David Johnson, Mignon Zezqueaux, Maggie Luna, Thomas Bartlett Whitaker (whose essay excerpt was read by the Marshall Project’s Maurice Chammah) and poet Jorge Antonio Renaud explored the issue … Read More

News, The Issue

Texas Observer/Audm Audio Stories

Audio versions of Texas Observer stories, brought to you by Audm. – Genetic genealogy is helping to crack cold cases and identify victims left nameless for decades. The process is surprisingly effective—and controversial.  Dallas’ paltry public transit system makes … Read More

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