GOOD

Data Map Shows How Diverse (And Segregated) Our Cities Really Are

A single, color-coded dot for every U.S. resident offers a unique way of looking at America’s complex ethnic tapestry.

Image Copyright, 2013, Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service, Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia (Dustin A. Cable, creator)

Maps are so much more than simple tools to tell us where to go and how to get there. Cartography can peel back the layers of the world around us, showing us new ways to understand the places and people with which we interact on a daily basis. Sometimes it’s light and whimsical, and sometimes it’s serious enough to make us reexamine our lives beyond the borders of the map itself.

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When the “Nice” Part of Town Gets Downright Mean

The beauty of a neighborhood can be in the skin color of the beholder

Sherwood Gardens, the Guilford park where the author played as a child.

In the wake of the 1994 murders of Drs. Walter and Mary Loch in Baltimore’s affluent Guilford neighborhood, the insular community, packed with mansions and pristine gardens, was on edge. That August, the Baltimore Sun’s Jacques Kelly wrote, “This hideous crime should not have happened anywhere. But in this oasis of physical perfection, lushly clipped and edged lawns shaded by mature locust and sycamore trees, the event was all the more shattering.” These seemingly contradictory sentences, then and now, sum up the subjective nature of the “good” neighborhood, a prize believed to be guaranteed by whatever is left of the American Dream.

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Harlem School Teaches Kids Real Irish Jig (and Cultural Understanding)

Closing the achievement gap isn't just about test scores. Harlem Academy is teaching kids how to appreciate a diverse world.

Thanks to Siobhan Ni Mhaolagain, a Fulbright scholar from Dublin, Ireland, elementary school students attending Harlem Academy in New York City now know how to dance an Irish jig. In the video above, you can watch Ni Mhaolagain teaching "Some Say the Devil is Dead," an "old Irish jig that has been danced for generations in Irish homes and local parish halls."

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