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February 9, 2024

 

The Indiana Slavic Choir

Singing for Ukraine

When Iryna Voloshyna started a Slavic choir at IU in 2021, she didn’t realize it would be a local expression of a political situation halfway around the world. But then, in February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, and suddenly the choir was in high demand.

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February 2, 2024

 

Historian Cory Haala in a Midwest map shirt

Don’t Fight Your Political Enemies. Out-Organize Them.

It’s easy to want to fight our political enemies, but it’s often more effective to out-organize them. On this week’s Inner States, we look back to a time – not so long ago – when Midwesterners did just that. Historian Cory Haala tells us about Progressive Populists in the 1980s and 1990s.

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January 26, 2024

 

Sam Shoaf

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.

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January 19, 2024

 

Sam Shoaf

Don't Go Pro

Diana Hong practiced for 13 years to become a professional golfer. But at the last minute, she became a stand-up comedian instead. This week, stories about people who almost achieve their dreams, and then hook left.

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January 12, 2024

 

Tomato Products Company

Postcard from Paoli

This week on Inner States, a postcard from Paoli, Indiana, where a tomato products warehouse has been transformed into a community space and enhanced the already existing magical realism of the town.

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January 5, 2024

 

3 stills on a table from Fritz Lang's Metropolis

How to Watch Old Movies

Jack Lindner reminds us why we should watch old movies on film. Then IU Cinema Director Alicia Kozma talks about how to approach movies that have, shall we say, "outdated" attitudes about social issues.

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December 29, 2023

 

I Quit Everything by Freda Love Smith

Quitting, Then Quitting Some More

In January 2021, Freda Love Smith started quitting things. She temporarily gave up alcohol, then sugar, followed by cannabis, caffeine, and social media. Then she wrote a book about it. WFIU’s David Brent Johnson spoke with her about the book, I Quit Everything.

December 22, 2023

 

A freestanding pole with post-it notes, in a house, with a Christmas tree in the background

The Inner States (Complicated Feelings About) Christmas Special!

Christmas has so many traditions. One of those, it turns out, is worrying about how commercial it’s gotten. That goes back at least as far as Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. We continue it with five attempts to do things differently.

December 15, 2023

 

Leah Johnson

Middle School and Queer Superpowers, and a Comedian in a Car

Leah Johnson writes romance novels. But not that kind. They’re award-winning YA books for queer Black kids and others. We talk about drag shows, making a living as a writer, and more. Then producer Avi Forrest takes a drive with comedian Katie Bowman.

December 8, 2023

 

Artist Nate Powell

Comics and the Moral Arc of the Universe

Even after doing the March Trilogy with Congressman John Lewis, artist Nate Powell thought social progress was inevitable. Then came the 2016 election. His new book of graphic essays reckons with what that meant as a parent and citizen.

December 1, 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.

November 24, 2023

 

Monique Verdin and Tracing Our Mississippi in Columbus, Indiana

Two Rivers, One Watershed

Indiana doesn’t touch the Mississippi River, but it’s still bound up with it. This week, we talk with Monique Verdin, Liz Brownlee, and others, about those connections.

November 17, 2023

 

Marabai Rose

Doubting Her Paralysis

When Marabai Rose was 38, a mysterious paralysis came over her. The challenges of getting diagnosed – and treated – in this episode, based on her book, Holding Hope.

November 10, 2023

 

Sycamore Leaves

Jack, Seigen, and a Federal Execution

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.

November 3, 2023

 

Susan Neiman

The Left, The Enlightenment, and Being Woke

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.

October 27, 2023

 

A display of 4 panels with photos of community remembrance projects

20th-Century Memory Work

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

October 20, 2023

 

Andrea Sterling emceeing the Bloomington Poetry Slam

The Teens Are Accomplished and Splendid. The Poets Bring the Slam.

A report from the Bloomington Poetry Slam, and a visit to the teen space at the local public library, where the teens are accomplished, splendid, and wise.

October 13, 2023

 

Welcome to Night Vale

Comedy and Conspiracy on Welcome to Night Vale…and Other Panics

Welcome to Night Vale co-creator Jeffrey Cranor on making of one of the most popular fiction podcasts ever. A group of high schoolers panic in France. And the guilty pleasure of a dating podcast for the rich and famous. Or rich, at least.

October 6, 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.

September 29, 2023

 

Micol Seigel

Family Policing with Micol Seigel

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.

September 22, 2023

 

Eric Deggans

NPR TV Critic Eric Deggans and Comedian Sara Schaefer Say What Needs to Be Said

Critic Eric Deggans says TV offers him a wide canvas for engaging with culture, and comedian Sara Schaefer decides Twitter isn’t the best place to address sexism in comedy. So she makes video sketches instead.

September 15, 2023

 

Ross Gay in a pink shirt

Ross Gay on the Transformation that Thinking Makes Happen

Ross Gay and I talk about his new book (more delights!), how writing a sentence helps us see how we change, and protecting the sanctity of one’s interiority.

September 8, 2023

 

Todd Burkhardt Mask Inside Outside

Vets Do 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.

September 3, 2023

 

Cassette tape

Mixtape (fixed)

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.

September 1, 2023

 

Cassette tape

Mixtape

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.

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