Michelle obama and oprah

Oprah Winfrey Interviews Michelle Obama for OWN Primetime Special, Picks Memoir for Book Club

The interview will air across multiple platforms, including a podcast and in various Hearst magazines.

Michelle Obama sat down with Oprah Winfrey for an in-depth conversation that will be released across multiple platforms this month, timed to the release of Obama’s memoir, Becoming.

Winfrey and Obama’s conversation took place at Hearst Tower in New York City in front of an audience that included a group of local, female high school students. Obama spoke about the life experiences that have shaped her, including her childhood on the South Side of Chicago, her years as an attorney and executive in Chicago and how she worked to balance the demands of her career and raising two daughters.

She also opened up about some of the challenges she and Barack Obama faced during the early years of their marriage, including a stint in counseling, along with her years in the White House and the pressure of being the “first black family” to live there.

The conversation will air as a primetime special, Oprah Winfrey Special: Michelle Obama, that debuts at 8 p.m. Thursday. An extended, unedited version will be available on the Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations podcast starting the same day, with Part 2 available on Nov. 19. In addition, the full interview will be streamed on Oprah’s Facebook at 11 am. Nov. 18.

The interview will also be featured in O, The Oprah Magazine on newsstands Nov. 20, with behind-the-scenes content available on Oprahmag.com as well as globally across multiple Hearst Magazines’ titles, including the December cover of ELLE. This marks the first time for such an effort across the Hearst publications group.

In addition, the book has been chosen as the newest selection of Oprah’s Book Club, marking Winfrey’s first pick by an author from the political world since she started her club in 1996, although Obama has said repeatedly she has no interest in running for office. Winfrey’s previous picks have ranged from novels such as Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad and Tayari Jones’ An American Marriage to Anthony Ray Hinton’s memoir The Sun Does Shine.

OprahMag.com is posting an exclusive excerpt of the book.

“This book is everything you wanted to know and so much you didn’t even know you wanted to know. I believe it’s going to spark within you the desire to think about your own becoming,” Winfrey told the Associated Press. “It’s so well-written I can hear her voice; I can hear her expressions; I can feel her emotion. What she allows us to see is how she was able to discover, define and then refine her voice.”

Winfrey also tweeted the news, prompting a Twitter reply from Obama: “Thank you, Oprah! I’ve been so grateful for your friendship and advice for so long. And now I’m honored to join your amazing book club!”

In Becoming, Obama shares such deeply personal revelations as suffering a miscarriage and sharply criticizes President Donald Trump for promoting the false “birther” rumor that Barack Obama was not a U.S. citizen. The former first lady’s book comes out Tuesday via Crown Publishing, a part of Penguin Random House, and is among the most anticipated political memoirs in years, topping Amazon.com’s best-seller list throughout the weekend. It is expected to sell millions of copies. It is being published globally in 31 languages.

Winfrey, publishing’s most established hit-maker, knows the Obamas well, to the point where Michelle Obama and Ellen DeGeneres once teased each other over who was closer to her. Winfrey was a prominent backer of Barack Obama’s candidacy in 2008, and has interviewed both Obamas over the years. She is scheduled to be onstage Tuesday night with Michelle Obama at Chicago’s United Center, the first stop on Obama’s promotional tour, which also includes interviews with Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Living in the White House for eight years, Michelle Obama had staffers providing everything she could have possibly needed, except for time. “What I came to realize is that there was absolutely no time to reflect in the White House,” the former first lady told Oprah Winfrey for ELLE’s December issue. “We moved at such a breakneck pace from the moment we walked in those doors until the moment we left.”

Now, with time to process two terms in office—a historic run of accomplishments and struggles—Obama has released her highly anticipated memoir, Becoming. Ahead of her book release, the former FLOTUS sat down with Oprah, and got real about her marriage to Barack, the threats made against her children, and life after the White House.

On her and Barack’s early marriage struggles:

“When you get married and have kids, your whole plan, once again, gets upended. Especially if you get married to somebody who has a career that swallows up everything, which is what politics is. Barack Obama taught me how to swerve. But his swerving sort of—you know, I’m flailing in the wind. And now I’ve got two kids, and I’m trying to hold everything down while he’s traveling back and forth from Washington or Springfield. He had this wonderful optimism about time. He thought there was way more of it than there really was. And he would fill it up constantly. He’s a plate spinner—plates on sticks, and it’s not exciting unless one’s about to fall. So there was work we had to do as a couple. Counseling we had to do to work through this stuff.”

On what she learned in couple’s therapy with Barack:

“Well, you go because you think the counselor is going to help you make your case against the other person. ‘Would you tell him about himself?!’ And lo and behold, counseling wasn’t that at all. It was about me exploring my sense of happiness. What clicked in me was that I need support and I need some from him. But I needed to figure out how to build my life in a way that works for me.”

Miller Mobley

On being vulnerable:

“I feel vulnerable all the time. And I had to learn how to express that to my husband, to tap into those parts of me that missed him—and the sadness that came from that—so that he could understand. He didn’t understand distance in the same way. You know, he grew up without his mother in his life for most of his years, and he knew his mother loved him dearly, right? I always thought love was up close. Love is the dinner table, love is consistency, it is presence. So I had to share my vulnerability and also learn to love differently. It was an important part of my journey of becoming. Understanding how to become us.”

On Donald Trump, and how his birther conspiracy endangered her children:

“For it was a game. But the threats that you face as the commander in chief are real. And your children are at risk. In order for my children to have a normal life, even though they had security, they were in the world in a way that we weren’t. To think that some crazed person might be ginned up to think my husband was a threat to the country’s security; and to know that my children, every day, had to go to a school, and soccer games, parties, and travel; to think that this person would not take into account that this was not a game—that’s something that I want the country to understand. I want the country to take this in, in a way I didn’t say out loud, but I am saying now. It was reckless, it put my family in danger, and it wasn’t true. And he knew it wasn’t true.”

Miller Mobley

On feeling optimistic about our country:

“We have to feel that optimism. For the kids. We’re setting the table for them, and we can’t hand them crap. We have to hand them hope. Progress isn’t made through fear. We’re experiencing that right now. Fear is the coward’s way of leadership. But kids are born into this world with a sense of hope and optimism. No matter where they’re from. Or how tough their stories are. They think they can be anything because we tell them that. So we have a responsibility to be optimistic. And to operate in the world in that way.”

Ariana Yaptangco Social Media Editor Ariana Yaptangco is the Social Media Editor overseeing all #content across ELLE’s social platforms.

Oprah Winfrey Adds an Unexpected Thing from Michelle Obama to Her Favorite Things List

One thing Oprah Winfrey is known for is her list of favorite things. Although the 2019 Oprah’s Favorite Things list was released in November, it was later announced one more thing would be added. Here’s the unexpected item Winfrey added to her list of favorite things.

The history of Oprah’s Favorite Things

Oprah Winfrey | Andrew Chin/Getty Images

The title of this list is reportedly based on the song “My Favorite Things” from “The Sound of Music.” Winfrey’s list, which began as a segment on “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” aired annually during the week of Thanksgiving. The host used this time to suggest items she felt would make great holiday gifts or were worth mentioning. The best part was that audience members would get to take home each of the items Winfrey suggested. As far as “O, The Oprah Magazine,” Winfrey’s list of favorite things is the magazine’s holiday shopping guide, according to Winfrey.

Oprah’s Favorite Things television segment became known for humorous audience reactions just as much as the gifts. Here’s a clip of one audience member Winfrey said she thought was going to pass out from excitement.

The item added to Oprah’s Favorite Things list

Winfrey originally had a list of 79 things on her list. She later added a bonus item at the last minute. What was the item that was so fabulous it had to be added after the list was complete? Winfrey revealed that item was the guided journal based on Michelle Obama’s book “Becoming.” In a video she posted to Twitter, she said she had no idea Obama was publishing a guided journal.

Former US first lady Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey | JIM YOUNG/AFP via Getty Images

Winfrey took a moment to read a few lines from the book. Here is one line that stood out most for her:

Your story is the most powerful part of who you are. The struggles, successes, the failures, and everything in between. Remember to always stay open to new experiences and never let the doubters get in the way.

The book then prompts readers to list one struggle, failure, and success they have experienced in their life and what they learned from each of those experiences. Winfrey was so impressed with the guided journal that she turned to the camera and asked Obama why she didn’t let her know she was working on this project. “Michelle, why didn’t you tell me? This could have been on my favorite things list!” she exclaimed. “This would have been a great favorite things.”

One of my favorite things to do is rummage through @oprahmagazine’s book editor @leighhaber ‘s office. She has all the latest books often before they’re published. What to my wondering eyes did appear.. a new faaaavorite thing! Find it here: https://t.co/33Tt6gjFJA @MichelleObama pic.twitter.com/xNSyfh1n5f

— Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) November 9, 2019

Oprah’s Favorite Things 2019

What’s on the list of Oprah’s Favorite Things for 2019? As mentioned earlier, Winfrey has a list of 79 of her favorite things (80, including Michelle Obama’s guided journal). There are many interesting things on the list, including some very pricey items. Showbiz Cheat Sheet’s Dirk Winifred notes the most expensive thing on Winfrey’s list is the Flywheel home exercise bike, which is priced at a whopping $1,599. Why is this bike so expensive? Well, it includes a two-month workout guide subscription, a tablet, and WiFi and Bluetooth. If you’re looking for gifts that are on the lower end of the price range, check out some of the food and kitchen items.

Read more: The Ups and Downs of Oprah’s Weight Loss Journey, and What She Swears By

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