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BackStory

Hot Diggity Dog

Friday, September 04, 2015

Producer Colin McNulty takes to the streets of Chicago with author Bruce Kraig to explore the history of an iconic American meat: the hot dog.

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BackStory

Dress Doctors

Friday, August 28, 2015

Historian Linda Przybyszewski talks with Ed Ayers about professors of home economics in the first half of the 20th century, who taught their students to use principles of art and design in their wardrobes – and graded them on the outfits they wore to clas

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BackStory

Burn Marks

Friday, August 21, 2015

Arson investigator John Lentini tells the Guys about his efforts to make sure arson investigations run on scientific fact, not romantic hunch.

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BackStory

Earthrise: Behind the Lens

Friday, August 14, 2015

Brian talks with Major General William Anders, the astronaut on the Apollo 8 mission who turned his camera on the “earthrise,” and learns first-hand what it’s like to see the earth as a whole.

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BackStory

BONUS: The Battle of the Kegs

Friday, August 07, 2015

Have a hankering to cast the British out of Philadelphia? Get revved up with this rendition of Francis Hopkinson's classic ditty "The Battle of the Kegs" by Fake Natives.

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BackStory

Untrammeled: Americans and the Wilderness [rebroadcast] [Full Episode]

Friday, July 31, 2015

Like millions of Americans this summer, BackStory is quitting the city and heading into the wild. In this episode, Brian, Ed, and Peter return to Americans’ fascination with wild places, and how we impact even the most remote corners of our country. The Guys explore how early European arrivals actually created wilderness out of a landscape long shaped by human intervention. They also find out how the city of San Francisco controlled the remote Hetch Hetchy valley, hundreds of miles away. Plus, they ask how our ideas about wild places have changed over time. Is there any wilderness left in the twenty-first century?

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The Takeaway

Trans Teen Fights to Change School Policy

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

A federal judge in Virginia will decide whether 16-year-old transgender student Gavin Grimm can use the boys' restrooms at Gloucester High School. 

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BackStory

A Friendship Out of Fallout

Friday, July 24, 2015

Brian Balogh speaks with Shigeko Sasamori, a survivor of the Hiroshima atomic bombing, and Clifton Truman Daniel, grandson of the man who ordered that strike, about the friendship that grew as both of them worked on a project to bring survivors’ stories to the U.S. This segment comes from our show on Reconciliation. You can listen to the whole episode here: http://bit.ly/1DBYRjL

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BackStory

Chasing the Brass Ring

Friday, July 17, 2015

Psychiatrist Robert Waldinger tells host Brian Balogh about a longitudinal study at Harvard that was meant to track professional success, but starting turning up data of a different sort: on happiness and well-being.

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BackStory

The Sleeve Makes the Man

Friday, July 10, 2015

Ed speaks with Megan Kate Nelson about the proliferation of so-called “empty sleeve” narratives in poems, stories, songs, and artworks that glorified amputee veterans returning home after the Civil War.

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BackStory

What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?

Friday, July 03, 2015

Historian David Blight narrates a reenactment of Frederick Douglass’ 1852 speech, “The Meaning of the Fourth of July for the Negro,” in which Douglass highlights the hypocrisy of celebrating liberty in a nation that allows slavery. Brian, Peter, and Ed discuss how slavery and its end changed the meaning of the Declaration and the holiday, as demonstrated by Frederick Douglass’ July 4th oration.

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BackStory

Live And Let Spy

Friday, June 26, 2015

Former Soviet spymaster Oleg Kalugin reminisces about his time recruiting Americans to spy for the USSR-- and how the U.S. eventually became his home.

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BackStory

Smoking or Non?

Friday, June 19, 2015

Host Brian Balogh chats with legal historian Sarah Milov, about how both Big Tobacco and the anti-smoking lobby have breathed the language of civil rights. This segment comes from our show "Balancing Acts: Claiming Rights in America." You can listen to the whole show here: http://backstoryradio.org/shows/balancing-acts-2/

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BackStory

Muslims on the Mic

Friday, June 12, 2015

Scholar Su'ad Abdul Khabeer tells BackStory producer Kelly Jones about Islam’s impact on hip-hop - and how hip-hop opened doors between different Muslim communities. This story comes from the BackStory episode "Islam & the United States." http://backstoryradio.org/?p=17200

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BackStory

WEB EXTRA: Voices from the Dark

Friday, June 05, 2015

There are three major blackouts that New Yorkers still talk about- in 1965, 1977, and 2013. Producer Kelly Jones gathered stories from those who remembered the sudden change that came over the city that never sleeps when the lights went out.

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BackStory

Web Extra: Ron Brown, PI, from "Keeping Tabs"

Friday, May 29, 2015

Private investigator Ron Brown tells hosts Brian Balogh and Ed Ayers some more of the ways he can track people - including finding where you are, through your cell phone. This is a web extra for the BackStory episode “Keeping Tabs: Personal Data Collection in America.” You can listen to the episode here: https://soundcloud.com/backstory/keeping-tabs-personal-data For more on the guests and stories featured in this episode, and for an array of resources on data collection and surveillance, check out BackStory’s website at: http://backstoryradio.org/shows/keeping-tabs/

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BackStory

Fastball

Friday, May 22, 2015

Is America’s national pastime too slow? Major League historian John Thorn and famously off-speed pitcher Bill “Spaceman” Lee toss around this old debate.

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BackStory

Cops on Camera

Friday, May 15, 2015

Madison, Ala., Police Chief Larry Muncey considers the pros and cons of video technology in law enforcement, and the philosophy of community policing.

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BackStory

WEB EXTRA: Snail Darters, Pork, and Presidents

Friday, May 08, 2015

Listen to Zygmunt Plater discuss a very tense phone call he had about the snail darter – with the President of the United States. This is an excerpt from the BackStory episode “The Departed: Americans and Extinction.” For more on the guests and stories featured in this episode, and for an array of resources exploring extinction in American history, check out BackStory’s website: http://backstoryradio.org/shows/the-departed/

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BackStory

Round and Round We Go

Friday, May 01, 2015

Hosts Brian Balogh and Peter Onuf call up Gary Anderson, who designed the iconic recycling symbol back when he was in college.

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