New York Times correspondent and author of American Tapestry: The Story of the Black, White, and Multiracial Ancestors of Michelle Obama, Rachel L. Swarns, discusses her book about the ancestry of Michelle Obama, illuminating the complexity of racial intermingling in a changing nation.
New York Times reporter Rachel Swarns has followed Michelle Obama's journey all the way back to through her ancestry. Swarns' new book "American Tapestry" explores the first lady's surprising genealogy.
How far back in your family tree can you go? Most people draw blanks if asked to go farther back than their great-grandparents. Our two guests, Rachel Swarns, Washington correspondent for The New York Times, and Megan Smolenyak, a genealogist, were able to discover details about Michelle Obama's ancestry that even the first lady didn't know.
For more, read Rachel Swarns' and Jodi Kantor's article, "In First Lady’s Roots, a Complex Path From Slavery," in The New York Times.