Pressing play — stories about children and how recreation is a form of creation. Kurt Andersen takes a field trip to Governors Island with design critic Alexandra Lange to learn about the history of playgrounds — and see some extraordinary slides. Paola Antonelli tells us the humble beginnings of the Frisbee, its origins being in a pie-baking company whose pie plates, college students discovered, were impressively aerodynamic. Producer Jessica Benko talks to an 8-year-old about her imaginary friends, and to a psychology professor about how those invented characters reflect well on the imagination of the kids who conjure them. And we examine the surprising — and controversial — history of Barbie, who has become an obsession both for the kids who play with her and the artists who feature the dolls in their work.
Support the journalists who bring The World to you. For a limited time, when you make a gift in any amount, you’ll help us unlock $30,000 in challenge funds.