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Scene on Radio

Kenan Insitute for Ethics at Duke University

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Scene on Radio is a two-time Peabody-nominated podcast that dares to ask big, hard questions about who we are—really—and how we got this way. Previous series include Seeing White (Season 2), looking at the roots and meaning of white supremacy; MEN (Season 3), on patriarchy and its history; The Land That Never Has Been Yet (Season 4), exploring democracy in the U.S. and why we don’t have more of it; and The Repair (Season 5), on the climate crisis: Where did we go so wrong in our relationship ...
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As we get ready to launch our Season 7, a bonus episode from another podcast we think our listeners will want to hear: Long Shadow. Episode 1 of its newest season, In Guns We Trust, with host Garrett Graff. Mass shootings have plagued the U.S. for generations. But in 1999, when shots rang out in a suburban Denver school, it was different. What chan…
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What would it take, and what would it even mean, to heal from a wound like the Wilmington massacre and coup of 1898 — or from centuries of white supremacist violence, disenfranchisement, and theft? An exploration of that question with community members in Wilmington, and experts on restorative justice and reparations. By Michael A. Betts, II and Jo…
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After the massacre and coup of November 10, 1898, white supremacists in North Carolina soon finished the job of disenfranchising Black citizens and instituting Jim Crow segregation. They also took control of the narrative. A new propaganda campaign, the one after the fact, succeeded for a century – even as several Black writers tried to tell the tr…
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On November 1898, North Carolina Democrats won a sweeping victory at the polls – confirming the success of their campaign based on white supremacy, intimidation, and fraud. But in Wilmington, the state’s largest city, white supremacist leaders were not satisfied. This episode tells what happened on November 10, 1898, in Wilmington: a massacre of Bl…
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By 1898, two decades after the end of Reconstruction, white elites, backed by violent terror groups, have installed Jim Crow across most of the South. North Carolina, led by its largest city, Wilmington, is different. A Fusion coalition, made up of mostly-Black Republicans and mostly-White members of the Populist Party, controls the city and state …
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This series tells the story of the only successful coup d’etat in U.S. history, and the white supremacist massacre that went with it. It happened in Wilmington, North Carolina in November 1898. But before we get to that story, we explore the surprising world of Wilmington in the 19th century – the world that the massacre and coup violently destroye…
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Introduction to Season 6, a series co-produced by Michael A. Betts II and Scene on Radio producer and host John Biewen, with story editor Loretta Williams. Music by Kevin MacLeod, Okaya, and Lucas Biewen. Echoes of a Coup is a project of America’s Hallowed Ground and Scene on Radio, from the Kenan Institute for Ethics at Duke University.…
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In the summer of 1787, fifty-five men got together in Philadelphia to write a new Constitution for the United States, replacing the new nation’s original blueprint, the Articles of Confederation. But why, exactly? What problems were the framers trying to solve? Was the Constitution designed to advance democracy, or to rein it in? And how can the an…
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The next in our summer mini-season of rebroadcasts: For Eddie Wise, owning a hog farm was a lifelong dream. In middle age, he and his wife, Dorothy, finally got a farm of their own. But they say that over the next twenty-five years, the U.S. government discriminated against them because they were Black, and finally drove them off the land. Their st…
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In this bonus episode we share a recent installment from Hot Take, the climate podcast co-hosted by Amy Westervelt (co-host/reporter for our Season 5 series on climate, The Repair) and writer Mary Annaïse Heglar. They talk with their guest, author and New York Times writer David Wallace-Wells, about the lessons we can learn from Covid-19, the paral…
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Several years after Janey was sexually assaulted by her former boyfriend, Mathew, she told some of her closest friends, and her mother, what Mathew had done. Janey was so troubled by her loved ones’ responses that she went back to them years later to record conversations about it all. In this episode: Janey’s story, and philosopher Kate Manne, who …
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A refugee from war in Eastern Europe. An NYC-born survivor who grew up poor, Black, Muslim, and gay. And how one, and her music, saved the other. By Aleks Basic, featuring Laila Nur. Part of our summer mini-season of rebroadcasts. Editing by Shea Shackelford and host John Biewen.Από τον Kenan Insitute for Ethics at Duke University
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How to grieve when the deaths come so quickly? How, as a Black mother in America, to protect your child’s innocence and hope? An audio essay by Stacia Brown. The first in a summer mini-season of rebroadcasts. Editing by Shea Shackelford and host John Biewen. Music by Prince, Eme Dm, One World One Nation, Blu & Exile, Otwin, and goodnight Lucas.…
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In our Season 5 finale: What’s the cultural transformation we need to make — in the West, and the U.S. in particular — to live in good health with the rest of the natural world and with each other? Episode 11 of The Repair, our series on the climate emergency. Researched and produced by John Biewen, with co-host Amy Westervelt. Script editor, Chery…
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The first of two concluding episodes in Season 5, in which we focus on solutions. In Part 10 of The Repair, we look at the actions and policies that people need to push for —now — to avoid the most catastrophic effects of climate change. Reported by Amy Westervelt. Script editor, Cheryl Devall. Production and mix by John Biewen. Interviews with Kat…
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In several countries around the world, including Ecuador, New Zealand, and the U.S., some people are trying to protect the planet using a legal concept called “rights of nature” – infusing the law with Indigenous understandings of Mother Earth. Part 9 of The Repair, our series on the climate emergency. Reported by Amy Westervelt and Polyglot Barber…
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Among the wealthy, industrialized Western countries that created the climate crisis, Scotland is one of the leaders in pivoting away from fossil fuels – or promising to. Just how quickly will Scots be willing to cut off the flow – of oil, and money? Part 8 of The Repair, our series on the climate emergency. Reported and written by Victoria McArthur…
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The climate crisis is not new to Bangladesh. For decades, global warming has exacerbated storms and flooding and turned many thousands of people into refugees in their own country. Yet, even though Bangladeshis did almost nothing to create the crisis, some are trying to be part of the solution. Reported by Tareq Ahmed, with recording and production…
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Earth’s changing climate is already displacing millions of people, worsening tension and conflict, and sometimes violence – for example, between farmers and traditional nomadic herders in Nigeria. Part 6 of The Repair, our series on the climate emergency. Reported by Ugochi Anyaka-Oluigbo, with reporting and production assistance from Nchetachi Chu…
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Co-hosts John Biewen and Amy Westervelt discuss the U.S. Congress’s effort to pass its first major climate bill ever, and Senator Joe Manchin’s move to block a key measure seemingly on behalf of the fossil fuel industry. And an episode of Drilled, Amy Westervelt’s true crime podcast about the climate crisis.…
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Southeast Asia is especially vulnerable to storms, rising oceans, and other climate effects—though countries in the region did very little to create the crisis. In Indonesia, among other climate-related challenges, the capital city is sinking into the sea. Part 5 of our series, The Repair, on the climate emergency. Reported by Nita Roshita, with re…
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Why has the United States played such an outsized role in the creation of the climate crisis? As a settler nation, the U.S. emerged from the colonizing, capitalist West, but what did America and its cultural peculiarities bring to the party? Part 4 of our series, The Repair, on the climate emergency. Researched and written by this season’s co-host,…
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If the Enlightenment was so great, why was it not a course correction? In fact, did cultural values that took hold in the West in this period speed up our race toward ecological suicide? Part 3 of our series, The Repair, on the climate crisis. By season co-host Amy Westervelt, with host and producer John Biewen. Interviews with Devin Vartija, Darre…
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