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Across the Margin: The Podcast
54 minutes | 11 days ago
Episode 109: Sun Ra's Chicago
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with author and Associate Professor in the Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice at the University of Chicago, William Sites. Sites’ first book, entitled Remaking New York: Primitive Globalization and the Politics of Urban Community, focused on the transformation of New York City during the final quarter of the twentieth century. His latest — which is the focus of this episode — is entitled Sun Ra’s Chicago: Afrofuturism and the City, a book that can be aptly described as a comprehensive exploration of the formative years of American jazz composer, bandleader, piano and synthesizer player, and poet Sun Ra. Sun Ra’s Chicago persists as much more than simply a biography, but an analysis of the urban spaces and relationships that shaped the transcendent musician into the otherworldly philosophical leader of his band, the Arkestra. Sun Ra, born Sonny Blount, was one of the most wildly prolific and eccentric figures in the history of music. Renowned for extravagant performances in which his Arkestra appeared in neo-Egyptian garb, the keyboardist and bandleader espoused an interstellar cosmology that claimed the planet Saturn as his true home. In Sun Ra’s Chicago, Sites brings this grandiose musician back to Earth — specifically to Chicago’s South Side, where from 1946 to 1961 the accomplished artist lived and relaunched his career. The postwar South Side of Chicago was a hotbed of unorthodox religious and cultural activism. It was an unruly musical crossroads where Sun Ra drew from a diverse array of intellectual and musical sources — from radical nationalism, revisionist Christianity, and science fiction to jazz, blues, Latin dance music, and pop exotica — to construct a philosophy and performance style that imagined a new identity and future for African Americans. Sun Ra’s Chicago shows that late twentieth-century Afrofuturism emerged from a deep, utopian engagement with the city — and that by excavating the postwar black experience of Sun Ra’s South Side surroundings, we can come to see the possibilities of urban life in new ways. In this episode host Michael Shields and William Sites converse about Sun Ra's birthplace of Birmingham, Alabama and examine how the city’s extraordinarily vibrant musical culture began to shape a young Sonny Blount. They then explore Sun Ra’s time in Chicago, where he grew to fame gigging at Club DeLisa and in Calumet City as they explore the myriad of influences and relationships (particularly his friendship with Alton Abraham) that became central to the development of his music and mythology. Ultimately, this episode serves as an ode to the legend and legacy of Sun Ra and serves as a celebration of the intergalactic genius of a true visionary.Grab a copy of Sun Ra's Chicago here! See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
61 minutes | 23 days ago
Episode 108: The Art of The Interview & New Beginnings with Jimmy Chairman
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast introduces you to producer, writer, filmmaker, and media expert Jimmy Chairman. From 2006 until 2020 Chairman interviewed celebrities for a living. All told, he conducted over 10,000 interviews. On the red carpet night in and night out working for E! Entertainment — in the channel’s heyday — Chairman admirably picked the brains of the world's most famous actors, athletes, and artists. Beyond his work on the red carpet, Chairman helms his own production company, Chairman Media, and has been releasing captivating content across a bevy of platforms for decades. In this episode host Michael Shields and Jimmy Chairman confer upon the art of interviewing while considering their shared experiences conversing with thought leaders and artists. They celebrate the opportunities that working in media and television offer, while Chairman recounts a myriad of magical moments and encounters across his many years in showbusiness. Chairman also expounds upon his latest venture, an enterprise called Fix Your Shot, which is a leading hands-on videoconferencing aesthetics support company. Chairman even makes time, throughout the diversified conversation, to share his theory — potentially confirmed by writer and executive producer Terence Winter — of how The Sopranos really concluded, and much, much more. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
35 minutes | a month ago
Episode 107: Row with Daniel Goldstein
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast celebrates, through an interview with director and playwright Daniel Goldstein, the release of the inspiring new musical Row, adapted from the moving memoir A Pearl in the Storm by Tori Murden McClure. Goldstein has directed over 100 plays and musicals worldwide, including work at major theaters across the United States and Asia. He was most recently represented on Broadway by the revival of Godspell and his Off Broadway credits include Walmartopia, Indoor / Outdoor, and Lower Ninth, to name a few. As a writer, Goldstein is currently under commission by the Public Theater, for which he recently wrote the musical adaptation of Tori Murden McClure's aforementioned memoir A Pearl in the Storm with singer/songwriter Dawn Landes. Row, which tells parallel stories of Tori’s journey across the Atlantic Ocean in a rowboat and through her life, is a heartbreaking and ultimately uplifting story of finding your heart in the middle of the ocean. It was scheduled to make its stage debut at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts in the summer 2020. Instead Row just made its world premiere as a recording available on Audible. In this episode host Michael Shields and Daniel Goldstein discuss the complexities of Tori Murden McClure’s inspiring journey across the Atlantic, the unique challenges of bringing a musical to life amid the pandemic, the weighty themes present in Row (faith, isolation, self-doubt, fear), the outstanding sound design featured in the performance, and ultimately, they celebrate the birth of the first ever traditional book musical.Listen to Row now at Audible! See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
51 minutes | a month ago
Episode 106: Louder Than Bombs with Ed Vulliamy
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with Ed Vulliamy, former reporter for The Guardian and The Observer. He is the author of Amexica: War Along the Borderline and The War is Dead, Long Live the War — Bosnia: The Reckoning. His latest book Louder Than Bombs — part memoir, part reportage — is a story of music from the front lines. In Louder Than Bombs, Vulliamy offers a testimony to his lifelong passion for music. Vulliamy’s reporting has taken him around the world to cover the Bosnian War, the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of Communism, the Iraq wars of 1991 and 2003, narco violence in Mexico, and more. All places where he confronted stories of violence, suffering, and injustice. Through it all, Vulliamy has turned to music not only as a reprieve but also as a means to understand and express the complicated emotions that follow. Describing the artists, songs, and concerts that most influenced him, in Louder Than Bombs Vulliamy unites the two largest threads of his life — music and war. Vulliamy’s book is a wildly exciting and informative journey that covers some of the most important musical milestones of the past fifty years, from Jimi Hendrix playing “Machine Gun” at the Isle of Wight Festival in 1970 to the Bataclan in Paris under siege in 2015. Vulliamy was present for many of these historic moments, and with him as our guide, we see them afresh through his unique perspective, along the way meeting musicians like B.B. King, Graham Nash, Patti Smith, Daniel Barenboim, Gustavo Dudamel, and Bob Dylan. As Vulliamy discovers, when horror is unspeakable and when words seem to fail us, we can turn to music for expression and comfort, or for rage and pain. Poignant and sensitively told, Louder Than Bombs is an unforgettable record of a life bursting with music. In this episode host Michael Shields and Vulliamy converse upon the cathartic power of music while waxing poetically about the ways musicians channel and give birth music. They explore Vulliamy’s interactions with B.B. King and his experience seeing Jimi Hendrix mere days before his passing while recounting the importance of a band called The Plastic People of the Universe around the fall of the Berlin Wall, and ultimately celebrate Graham Nash’s aim to change the world through music, and so much more. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
33 minutes | 2 months ago
Episode 105: Up From Nothing with John Hope Bryant
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with entrepreneur, author, philanthropist, and prominent thought leader John Hope Bryant, in a thought-provoking episode which centers on Bryant’s latest book, Up From Nothing. Using the inspiring story of his own rise from humble beginnings, and that of his parents and grandparents, Up From Nothing sets out to display how individually we can change our mindset from survivor to thriver to winner, and move beyond just getting by or being financially independent, to becoming wildly successful. John Hope Bryant is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Operation HOPE, the largest non-profit provider of financial literacy and economic empowerment services in the United States for youth and adults. The last five U.S. presidents have recognized his work, and he has served as an advisor to the last three sitting U.S. presidents from both political parties. He is responsible for financial literacy becoming the policy of the U.S. federal government and he has been named one of Atlanta Business Chronicle’s “The Power 100 Most Influential Atlantans of 2020,” Atlanta Business Chronicle’s “Most Admired CEOs” in 2018, and one of Time magazine’s “50 Leaders for the Future." He has received hundreds of awards and citations for his work, including Oprah Winfrey’s Use Your Life Award, and the John Sherman Award for Excellence in Financial Education from the U.S. Treasury. In this episode, host Michael Shields and Bryant discuss American optimism while expounding upon how valuable a positive mindset and believing in yourself can be. Bryant also shares his Five Pillars of Success, a roadmap to success he believes every American should have access to, and ultimately Bryant celebrates the idea that America will be a much stronger and happier place if we were to make the effort to invest in each other’s success and well being. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
36 minutes | 2 months ago
Episode 104: Saint Disruption's Jeff Firewalker Schmitt
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with musician, folk healer, ceremonialist, and scientist Jeff Firewalker Schmitt. Schmitt, along with renowned jazz musician John Medeski (of Medeski Martin & Wood), have formed a musical collaborative called Saint Disruption bringing together musicians, video artists, and visionaries to create music, art, and experiences that explore the human condition. Saint Disruption, in conjunction with its record label Root Doctor Media, is a model for harnessing collective wisdom, self-organization, recording technology and creative artistry to create compelling works of beauty. Profits from their works are used to support the greater good through alliances with NGOs and nonprofits. Schmitt is also the founder of the Eagle Condor Council and Tobacco Freedom, and is an advocate for indigenous healing and wisdom traditions while working closely with the Wisdom Keepers. As both a noted scientist and practitioner of Peruvian Folk medicine, he seeks to build bridges of understanding. He is a challenging and evocative speaker/storyteller who in 2011 presented the first TEDx talk on Ayahuasca — inspired by his life-changing sojourn with the Secoya of the Amazon rainforest. In this episode host Michael Shields and Jeff Firewalker Schmitt dig into the origins of, and inspiration behind, Saint Disruption, discuss the charitable aims of the collective, explore the profoundly socially conscious themes of the music, and speculate on all that might lie ahead for this exciting, multi-faceted project. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
37 minutes | 3 months ago
Episode 103: Chicago Soul Music and Black Cultural Power with Aaron Cohen
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with Aaron Cohen, author of Move On Up: Chicago Soul Music and Black Cultural Power. In Move On Up, Aaron tells the remarkable story of the explosion of soul music in Chicago. Together, soul music and black-owned businesses thrived and record producers and songwriters broadcasted optimism for black America’s future through their sophisticated, jazz-inspired productions. Soul music also accompanied the rise of African American advertisers and the campaign of Chicago’s first black mayor, Harold Washington, in 1983. This empowerment was set in stark relief by the social unrest roiling in Chicago and across the nation. As Chicago’s homegrown record labels produced rising stars singing songs of progress and freedom, Chicago’s black middle class faced limited economic opportunities and deep-seated segregation. Drawing on more than one hundred interviews and a music critic’s passion for the unmistakable Chicago soul sound, Cohen shows us how soul music became the voice of inspiration and change for a city in turmoil. In this episode, host Michael Shields and Cohen discuss the countless interviews he took on to bring Move On Up to vivid life, the diversity of sound and influences that defines Chicago soul music, the interconnectedness between music and politics highlighted in the book, the influence of the 1960’s psychedelic counterculture on Chicago’s soul music, the power radio wielded in engaging the community through music and community action, and so much more.Grab a Copy of Move On Up: Chicago Soul Music and Black Cultural Power here! See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
40 minutes | 3 months ago
Episode 102: Sanya N'Kanta
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with Sanya N'Kanta, the Jamaican born and Charlotte-based musician who has made a name for himself with his genre-blurring style, bringing together rock, reggae, hip-hop, house music, and electro-pop. Sanya’s latest release, an EP entitled These Are The Days, is an ode to his lifelong love rock n 'roll. Common themes throughout These Are The Days are growth, friendship, morality, the importance of time with family, and healing. While the songs on Sanya's rousing new EP are largely more optimistic and personal than his previous work, his recent singles “I.C.E. at the Door” and “The Lesser of Two Evils,” act as hard-hitting commentaries on the dark political realities of 2020 and America's fraught history. Sanya is a multi-faceted musician and storyteller, and these two songs are a great example of his commitment to incorporating socially conscious themes into his music. In this episode Sanya expounds upon immigrating to the United States and his early experiences in the country, his youthful infatuation with American rock n’ roll music, a recent brush with carbon monoxide poisoning that put his life at risk and changed the way he viewed life and creating art, the intricacies behind the crafting of These Are The Days, and much, much more. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
64 minutes | 4 months ago
Episode 101: The Revisionaries with A. R. Moxon
In this episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast host Michael Shields explores an achievement in fiction writing, a tour de force of a novel heralded by critics as a “modern classic” and a “spectacular invention” entitled The Revisionaries. Penned by A.R. Moxon, who is featured in this episode, The Revisionaries is a wildly imaginative, masterfully rendered, and suspenseful tale that conjures the bold outlandish stylishness of Thomas Pynchon, Michael Chabon, Margaret Atwood, Stephen King, and Alan Moore — while being unlike anything that’s come before it. It is about a priest who may or may not be a priest trying to differentiate between reality and fantasy in order to find the source of his faith. Beyond his quest toward the spiritual, this priest — named Julius — is under pressure to save the world. Featuring a female acrobat with a luxurious beard, the peculiar followers of a religious cult, an enigmatic smoking figure who seems to know what’s going to happen just before it does, and an ancient hereditary evil hidden in the heart of Tennessee’s grandest tourist trap, Pigeon Forge, The Revisionaries is awe-inspiring in scope and delightfully all consuming. In this episode, Michael and A. R. discuss his collaboration with fellow writer Ben Colmery, the challenges he had in bringing to life a 400,000 word manuscript, the unique stylization choices he employed, the many weighty, thought-provoking themes found throughout the narrative, the influence of the band Phish on the book, and much, much more.Grab a copy of The Revisionaries here, subscribe to A.R Moxon’s newsletter here, and follow him on Twitter at @JuliusGoat! See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
40 minutes | 4 months ago
Episode 100: How to Do Nothing with Jenny Odell
This thought-provoking 100th episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with Oakland, California-based artist, writer, and educator, Jenny Odell. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, New York Magazine, The Paris Review, The Believer, McSweeney's, and Sierra Magazine. Her visual work has been exhibited internationally, including as a mural on the side of a Google data center in rural Oklahoma. Odell has been an artist in residence at the Internet Archive, the San Francisco Planning Department, and Recology SF (otherwise known as the dump) and is a lecturer in the Department of Art & Art History at Stanford University. This episode focuses on Odell’s bestselling book How To Do Nothing: Resisting The Attention Economy. In a world where addictive technology is designed to buy and sell our attention, and our value is determined by our 24/7 data productivity, it can seem impossible to escape. But in this inspiring “field guide” to dropping out of the attention economy that is How To Do Nothing, Odell teaches us how to win back our lives. Our attention is the most precious — and overdrawn — resource we have and Odell contests we must actively and continuously choose how we use it. We might not spend it on things that capitalism has deemed important...but once we can start paying a new kind of attention, she writes, we can undertake bolder forms of political action, reimagine humankind’s role in the environment, and arrive at more meaningful understandings of happiness and progress. Far from the simple anti-technology screed, or the back-to-nature meditation we read so often, How to do Nothing is an action plan for thinking outside of capitalist narratives of efficiency and techno-determinism. Provocative, timely, and utterly persuasive, Odell’s insightful book will change how you see your place in our world, and this episode acts as the perfect introduction to How To Do Nothing and the important ideas that it holds. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
60 minutes | 4 months ago
Episode 99: Running To Protest & About The People w/ Coffey
This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with Brooklyn-based filmmaker and activist Coffey. Formerly the fashion editor of the hip-hop magazine XXL and the founder of the Define New York Run Club, Coffey has risen to the times as one of the leaders behind the Running To Protest movement. Running to Protest is a campaign, founded with the help of activist Power Malu, that was born in response to what has been happening to Black people, People of Color, and Indigenous people in America. In the wake of the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Admaud Arbery (and far too many others), Coffey began organizing protest events and runs that brought together people who are passionate about change. What has arisen from Coffey’s efforts is an ongoing and growing organization that meets regularly to unite, protest, learn, and lay out pragmatic action plans to work towards racial justice and equity. Running parallel and in tandem to his work in activism are Coffey's talents as a filmmaker, writer, and actor. Recently he wrote the screenplay for, and acted in, the short film About The People. About The People is a narrative short film, born of actual events, that examines social injustice and racial inequity in the black and brown community. It is an ode to the power honest conversations about social justice, equity, and race have within these communities. The film centers around a group of concerned pillars of the African American community that hold court at a conference table to discuss how they can improve society for their kinfolk and compel change. They grapple with the political, financial, and educational power structures in America, how they fit inside them, and plans for their re-engineering. Their open dialogue looks to find answers to tough social issues with resolutions and ideas arriving through moments of volatile exchanges. About The People encourages all audience members to have an introspective conversation that sparks real change. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
51 minutes | 5 months ago
Episode 98: The Righteous Mind with Jonathan Haidt
In this episode of Across The Margin : The Podcast, host Michael Shields interviews social psychologist, Professor of Ethical Leadership at New York University, and the author of The Righteous Mind : Why Good People Are Divided By Politics and Religion, Jonathan Haidt. The Righteous Mind, a book The New York Times Book Review called “a landmark contribution to humanity’s understanding of itself,” examines how morality is shaped by emotion and intuition more than by reasoning, and why opposing political groups have different notions of right and wrong. Drawing on his twenty-five years of groundbreaking research on moral psychology, Haidt shows, in his books and in this episode, how moral judgments arise not from reason but from gut feelings and exhibits why liberals, conservatives, and libertarians have such different intuitions about right and wrong, and why each side is actually right about many of its central concerns.Throughout the conversation Haidt expounds upon the foundations of morality that help explain what drives humans and explores ideas of tribalism and “groupish-ness” and its role in guiding our actions. Haidt also lays out three core ideas that help one to understand exactly what moral psychology is while also spelling out the best way to go about changing another person’s mind (which doesn’t involve appealing to reason!). Ultimately, the discussion veers towards an inspiring culmination where the miracle of human cooperation, and the joy that awaits humans when they trade in anger for understanding, is celebratedLearn more about Jonathan Haidt’s work at RighteousMind.Com and at OpenMindPlatform.Org! See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
37 minutes | 6 months ago
Episode 97: Happiness is an Option with Dr. Lynda M. Ulrich
In this episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast, host Michael Shields interviews Dr. Lynda Ulrich, the author of the book Happiness is an Option: Thriving (Instead of Surviving) In the Era of the Internet. Dr. Lynda Ulrich is the founder of Ever Widening Circles (EWC), a website whose aim is to prove that the world is a beautiful place, full of wonderment, discovery, and compassion. Within Ever Widening Circles, one will find articles about remarkable insights and innovations that have gone uncelebrated, and thousands of links to prominent thought leaders who are striving to make the world a better place for humankind. Dr. Ulrich’s aim — which is entirely inspiring — is to offer an alternative to all the negativity found in the news and on social media, negativity that is there not because the world is a negative place, but because it drives ratings, or cultivates clicks. Happiness is an Option, the book that lies at the heart of this episode, is brimming with useful insights to obtaining more joy, less fear, and a brighter future in the age of the internet. This episode features an in-depth conversation about Ever Widening Circles and its dynamic and thought-provoking content, four shifts Dr. Ulrich recommends for better navigating and breaking free from the grip of negativity on the internet, the benefits of being “kinder than you need to be,” the inspiring concept that is the “Conspiracy of Goodness,” and so much more. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
38 minutes | 6 months ago
Episode 96: Roots and Tings
This episode of Across The Margin : The Podcast serves as an introduction to Roots and Tings, the San Francisco Bay Area-based Revolutionary Culture Music collective. Roots and Tings comprises Quannum and Solesides co-founder, Grammy nominated MC, Lateef the Truth Speaker, acclaimed DJ and producer Jah Yzer, and the multi-talented musician and reggae artist Winstrong. Together, these dynamic artists have created a unique sound fusing elements of dancehall and hip-hop into a stunning reggae tapestry featuring catchy grooves overlaid with subversive lyricism. Roots and Tings music isn’t simply infectious and head nod inducing reggae flecked with hard-hitting hip-hop, it is often politically charged, rife with weighty themes concerning those all too often disenfranchised. In this episode, host Michael Shields is joined by the accomplished Roots and Tings trio, and together they delve deeply into the origins of the band, their prolific output over the last two years, and the song they crafted in anticipation of “Election Day.” They also discuss the tremendous guest features on their recently released album All of This (including Gift of Gab and Lyrics Born), what’s next for Roots And Tings, and so much more. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
31 minutes | 6 months ago
Episode 95: Parallels in Autocracy
In this episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast, host Michael Shields interviews Dr. Wolfgang Mack, who shares his vivid memories of living through one of the worst dictatorships in modern history. Dr. Wolfgang Mack knows what causes a country to slide into complete authoritarian control and chaos, and how legitimately elected leaders are able to grab power and gain control. A young boy when the Nazi Party took over Germany, Mack’s lifelong interest in autocratic leadership and dictatorship led to a career that found his business enterprises in several countries under dictatorship rule and he began to dive deeply into the underlying cause of politicians’ abuse of power — the rights and wrongs in the politics of nations — and basic human morality. In his book Parallels in Autocracy: How Nations Lose Their Liberty, which is the focus of this episode, Mack combines his personal journey and political analysis to assess the terrible damage autocracy does to civil society, and provides an overview of our current political systems and present, disconcerting trends in national leadership. Mack couples his recollections with political commentary that assesses the terrible damage that autocracy does to civil society, and how an elected demagogue can nullify the very same democratic mechanism that ushered him into power. Throughout the episode, Mack recounts what it is like growing up under a state controlled by a dictator, discusses several modern day dictators in the western world, and ultimately examines the disquieting trends in America that are veering away from the ideals of Democratic governmentship. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
57 minutes | 7 months ago
Episode 94: Mucho Mucho Amor, Dolphin Lover & More with Kareem Tabsch
Kareem Tabsch is an award-winning documentary filmmaker who believes in the power of film to enrich and change lives. His filmmaking focuses on documenting the oft-ignored parts of society, that which isn't always conventionally beautiful, widely accepted, or deemed normal. As a documentary filmmaker, Tabsch’s works have been official selections of Sundance, SXSW, True/False, Full Frame, HotDocs, Slamdance, AFI Docs, DocNYC, Rooftop Films, and LA Film Fest. His 2015 film Dolphin Lover won the Best Short Documentary Prize at LA Film Fest, and his latest film, Mucho Mucho Amor: The Legend of Walter Mercado (Netflix), a documentary film about the life and career of Walter Mercado, one of the most influential and important astrologists in Latin America and the world, has received wide critical acclaim (and 100% certified fresh from critics on Rotten Tomatoes, 97% audience score). In this episode Kareem and host Michael Shields discuss his unique upbringing in Miami and how he was inspired to be a storyteller, his filling of an art house theater void in Miami by founding O Cinema (a theater dedicated to first-run independent, foreign, art films), the controversy behind his documentary Dolphin Lover, and above all else, the tremendously fascinating life, career, and the cultural phenomenon of Walter Mercado. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
35 minutes | 7 months ago
Episode 93: The End of Policing with Alex S. Vitale
In this episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast, host Michael Shields interviews Professor of Sociology and Coordinator of the Policing and Social Justice Project at Brooklyn College, Alex S. Vitale. Professor Vitale has spent the last thirty years writing about policing and consults with police departments and human rights organizations internationally. He is a frequent essayist, whose writings have been published in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Nation, Vice News, Fortune, and USA Today and he has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, CNBC, NPR, PBS, Democracy Now, and The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. Professor Vitale is the author of City of Disorder: How the Quality of Life Campaign Transformed New York Politics and The End of Policing, his latest book which lies at the core of this episode. The End of Policing attempts to spark public discussion by revealing the tainted origins of modern policing as a tool of social control. It shows how the expansion of police authority is inconsistent with community empowerment, social justice — even public safety. Drawing on groundbreaking research from across the world, and covering virtually every area in the increasingly broad range of police work, Professor Vitale demonstrates how law enforcement has come to exacerbate the very problems it is supposed to solve. Expounding upon the ideas put forth in The End of Policing, this episode explores the bevy of myths that surround policing, ones regarding the benefits of diverse police forces, the capabilities of police training, and the idea that the police exist to protect us from the “bad guys.” This episode also surveys the history of policing as we know it, the concept of “broken-window” policing, what Defund The Police authentically means, how alternatives to police such as legalization, restorative justice, and harm reduction can led to reductions in crime, spending, and injustice, and so much more. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
40 minutes | 7 months ago
Episode 92: Tree Beings
In this episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast, host Michael Shields shines a light on one of his passions: trees. In what amounts to a celebration of the wonders of nature, and specifically some the largest organisms on the planet, this episode honors trees, those majestic giants who benevolently provide humankind with oxygen, store carbon, stabilize the soil, provide shelter to the world's wildlife, and so much more. Digging deep into the myriad ways in which trees make a difference in our world, Michael interviews Raymond Huber and Sandra Severgnini, the duo behind the soon to be released illustrated book Tree Beings. Raymond Huber is an author, teacher, and editor, and was the Creative NZ-Otago University Writer in Residence in 2018. His work includes acclaimed picture books (Flight of the Honey Bee and Gecko), junior sci-fi novels about bees (Sting and Wings), and the young adult novel Peace Warriors. Sandra Severgnini owned an art gallery and retail store before finally deciding to nurture her lifetime passion and focus on children’s picture books. Her fascination with the magical natural world around her inspires her words and brings sensitivity and humor to her illustrations. Throughout the episode, Michael, Raymond, and Sandra discuss the diverse themes present in Tree Beings, with a focus on four core ideas: Trees give life to the planet; How trees can help minimize the effects of Climate Change; How trees are like Beings; & Trees need our help and protection. In addition, a slew of dedicated scientists, activists, and explorers who helped uncover the mysteries of some of the world's oldest living organisms are featured in this episode, as well as the ingenious ways in which trees communicate and care for each other, and the planet as a whole. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
30 minutes | 7 months ago
Episode 91: Words Whispered in Water With Sandy Rosenthal
In this episode of Across The Margin : The Podcast, host Michael Shields converses with the author of the recently released book Words Whispered in Water: Why the Levees Broke in Hurricane Katrina, Sandy Rosenthal. Sandy is a civic activist and founder of Levees.Org, an organization dedicated to educating the American public about levee failures in New Orleans and increasingly around the country. Sandy’s book is the riveting, blow-by-blow story of her battles with the Army Corps of Engineers after defective flood walls broke during Hurricane Katrina, inundating New Orleans, and resulting in over 1,500 deaths and billions worth of damage. Against incredible odds, and facing continuous harassment and deception, Sandy exposed a mammoth federal agency failure and ensuing cover-up. When the protective steel flood-walls broke, the Army Corps of Engineers — with cooperation from big media — turned the blame on natural types of disasters. In the chaotic aftermath, Sandy uncovered the corruption and exposed the entire fatal deceit. In this episode, Michael and Sandy discuss how the Army Corps left the city unprepared prior to Katrina, how they covered up their failure following the storm, and examine just how safe New Orleans is today. In addition, this episode highlights Sandy and Levee.org’s important work outside of Louisiana, specifically in Michigan and California. Join in on an episode that acts as an ode to an authentic hero to the city of New Orleans in a story that proves that the power of a single individual is alive and well.Grab a copy of Words Whispered in Water: Why the Levees Broke in Hurricane Katrina here! See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
62 minutes | 8 months ago
Episode 90: On Corruption In America with Sarah Chayes
In this episode of Across The Margin : The Podcast, host Michael Shields interviews prize-winning journalist and internationally recognized expert on corruption in government networks throughout the world, Sarah Chayes. Chayes has served as special assistant on corruption to Mike Mullen, former chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, as well as having advised David McKiernan and Stanley McChrystal (commanders of the International Security Assistance Force). She has been a reporter for National Public Radio from Paris, covering Europe and the Balkans. Chayes is the author of The Punishment of Virtue: Inside Afghanistan After the Taliban and Thieves of State: Why Corruption Threatens Global Security, winner of the 2016 Los Angeles Times Book Prize. She recently penned a book that illustrates the daunting fact that the United States is showing signs similar to some of the most corrupt countries in the world. That book, On Corruption in America: And What Is At Stake, is the focus of this episode, and is one of the most eye-opening and critical books that you will encounter. From the titans of America’s Gilded Age (Carnegie, Rockefeller, J. P. Morgan, et al.) to the collapse of the stock market in 1929, the Great Depression and FDR’s New Deal; from Joe Kennedy’s years of banking, bootlegging, machine politics, and pursuit of infinite wealth, as well as the Kennedy presidency, to the deregulation of the Reagan Revolution, undermining the middle class and the unions; from the Clinton policies of political favors and personal enrichment to Trump’s hydra-headed network of corruption, systematically undoing the Constitution and our laws, in On Corruption in America, Chayes shows how corrupt systems are organized, how they enforce the rules so their crimes are covered legally, how they are overlooked and downplayed by the richer and better educated, and how they become an overt principle determining the shape of our government, affecting all levels of society. On Corruption in America, and this episode, dramatically highlights what we are all up against. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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