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More Recent Episodes

May 19, 2023


Field in Letcher County, KY

The Prison They Didn't Build

There's a meadow in eastern Kentucky where people sometimes hunt mushrooms, get married, attend a music festival. Something that's not happening? There's no prison getting built. This week, Judah Schept tells us why that prison was a close call.


May 12, 2023


Detail from the cover of Parapraxis Magazine Issue 1

Thinking with Freud

Parapraxis is a new magazine that examines the psychic mechanisms of our social lives. This week, a conversation with its founding editor, Hannah Zeavin, about the magazine, gender panics, fears of discussing whiteness in a psychoanalytic context, and more.


May 5, 2023


Leah Johnson

Leah Johnson's new book is about middle school, superpowers, and queerness

Leah Johnson writes romance novels. But not THAT kind. She writes award-winning YA books for queer Black kids and others. We talked about drag shows, making a living as a writer, book bans, and more.


April 28, 2023


How to Survive the Future Ep4 Art

How to Survive the Future Episodes 4 & 5

This week on Inner States, episodes 4 and 5 of How to Survive the Future, a podcast about today, from the perspective of tomorrow.


April 21, 2023


Welcome to Night Vale

Conspiracy becomes comedy on the podcast Welcome to Night Vale

This week, producer Avraham Forrest finds Welcome to Night Vale co-creator Jeffrey Cranor in a radio, and ascends to another plane of existence. But first, they discuss the making of one of the most popular fiction podcasts ever.


April 14, 2023


Hector Ortiz Sanchez at the Dillman Wastewater Treatment Plant

Hector Loves Water Treatment

Hector wants to run the best wastewater treatment plant in the country. He seems to be inspiring the people he works with in that direction, too. Then, whether we should feel guilty about guilty pleasures.


April 7, 2023


How to Survive the Future Ep2 Art

How to Survive the Future Episodes 1 & 2

This week, the first two episodes of How to Survive the Future, a podcast about today, from the perspective of tomorrow. But first, a frog in a bedroom leads to a bit of climate panic.

March 31, 2023


The Lynching of Thomas Shipp and Abraham Smith (detail), August 7, 1930, Marion, Indiana

Can art about the 20th century help us change the 21st?

Two stories about people using art to remember the past and, ideally, change something in the present.

March 24, 2023


The Wells Metz Carillon at night

3 Music Stories

What it took to turn Anne Frank’s diary into a mainstage opera; a new album from Witness Protection; and mysterious music coming into the radio station

March 17, 2023


Susan Neiman

Left is Not Woke with Susan Neiman

Philosopher Susan Neiman on why the left should be wary of wokeness, how Germany’s reckoning with its past has become more complicated, and why the differences between two European philosophers - Immanuel Kant and Michel Foucault – matter for politics today.

March 10, 2023


Todd Burkhardt Mask Inside Outside

Veterans Doing Art

Todd Burkhardt is a veteran, and he’s started asking other veterans to do needle felting with him. And drawing. And making masks. This week, what happens when vets do art.

March 3, 2023


Sam Shoaf

Replay: Becoming a Participant in the Landscape

Sam’s day job involves removing invasive plants and restoring native ones. Fire is one of the ways he does that. He’s a lifelong hunter, too - that’s what got him into landscape restoration. This week, a walk in the woods with Sam Shoaf.

February 28, 2023


Inner States

Can I ask you a couple questions?

It'll only take a minute.

February 24, 2023


Micol Seigel

Family Policing

We think of the foster care system as being about care. Micol Seigel says within the system people do care for each other. But it’s primarily about policing.

February 17, 2023


Cassette tape


It’s a mixtape! Five songs (okay, stories), by five different producers. Three are about being behind the scenes. One’s about your dad retiring. And an investigation into love.

February 10, 2023


Sycamore Leaves

Jack and Seigen

Jack was studying vocal performance when he met Seigen at the local Zen center. They became good friends. They took walks, stopping to look at every tree. Then Seigen asked Jack to drive him to an execution.

February 2, 2023


Abra Bush

The 21st-Century Conservatory Needs to Challenge Itself

Abra Bush, the new dean of the Jacobs School of Music, says conservatories are going to have to go beyond the Western canon to stay relevant to up-and-coming musicians in the twenty-first century.

January 27, 2023


Comic Books and Billboard Charts, Collecting and Ranking

Malcolm Mobutu Smith on comic books, collecting, and the exhibit he just put together based on that collection. Then, Bill Carroll uses the quantitative skills he developed as a chemist to analyze the billboard charts of the 1960s and 70s.

January 20, 2023


Michael Martone

Fiction Without Narrative, Teaching Without Grades, Indiana Beyond Sugar Cream Pie

Writer and teacher Michael Martone on fiction without narrative, teaching without grades, and writing about Indiana beyond corn, basketball, and sugar cream pie.

January 13, 2023


Artist Honey Hodges

If My Hands Could Look Like Hers

First, a conversation with artist Honey Hodges about collages, immigrating to the U.S., and the opportunity to care for someone who has always taken care of you. Then, naturalist Jim Eagleman reminds us why we should go outside in the winter, and at night.

January 6, 2023


Flinora Frazier (nee Meyers) meeting Langston Hughes

Censorship and Freedom

Three stories. One about the challenges of accessing books in prison. One about how overlooking a neighborhood’s history has affected the place. One about a comic book artist who has yet to experience writers’ block.

December 23, 2022


Novelist Jacinda Townsend

Mothering on Two Sides of the Atlantic

A conversation with novelist Jacinda Townsend about her new novel, which tackles the subject of motherhood from two perspectives on different sides of the world.

December 30, 2022


Kate Schneider

A Graphic Novel about the Medicalization of Death and Dying

The graphic novel Headland is about a woman in a hospital, the wilderness she visits in her mind, and the tortoise she meets there. It’s also about the medicalization of death and dying. This week, we talk with the author, Kate Schneider. Plus, Midwestern Movies, with Alicia Kozma.

December 16, 2022


Indiana Dunes looking east to Michigan City

Indiana's Oil and Gas Boom Still Echoes Today

Scholar and writer Ava Tomasula y Garcia tells the story of the Calumet Region, how the gas boom started with a bang, brought major industry and new racial dynamics, and why “the Rust Belt” is a bit of a misnomer.

December 9, 2022


People from Bloomington

People from Bloomington: A Short Story Collection from Indonesia (replay)

In 1980, the Indonesian fiction writer Budi Darma published a book of short stories called People from Bloomington. The English translation came out this month. This week on Inner States, translator Tiffany Tsao on Indonesian literature, Budi Darma, and Twitter.

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