14 episodes

Columbia University has a rich, controversial, and enduringly important history which deserves to be probed with all the intellectual and journalistic rigor of its present. Through examining the past of Columbia in 20-minute audio stories, The Ear aims to enrich and intellectualize what it means to be a student at Columbia today.

The Ear is the official podcast of The Eye, the weekly magazine of the Columbia Daily Spectator. Spectator is the newspaper-of-record at Columbia University.

The Ear Columbia Spectator

    • Society & Culture

Columbia University has a rich, controversial, and enduringly important history which deserves to be probed with all the intellectual and journalistic rigor of its present. Through examining the past of Columbia in 20-minute audio stories, The Ear aims to enrich and intellectualize what it means to be a student at Columbia today.

The Ear is the official podcast of The Eye, the weekly magazine of the Columbia Daily Spectator. Spectator is the newspaper-of-record at Columbia University.

    The Many Lives of Greek Life

    The Many Lives of Greek Life

    Content Warning: This episode of The Ear discusses sexual violence and rape.

    Welcome back to The Ear, The Eye’s podcast dedicated to documenting, detailing, and excavating Columbia’s history!

    In this week’s episode, reporter Teresa Lawlor examines Students for a Reformed Fraternity System, a student movement at Columbia in 1988 that tried to make the University’s all-male fraternities go coed. This past summer, national anti-racist protests sparked a University-wide debate on the future of Greek life and prompted disaffiliations from sororities. Why did SFARFS not achieve its goal? What can the successes and failures of those students, over 30 years ago, tell us about what is happening today? Listen to find out.



    Credits:

    Sarah M. Phillips Op-Ed Voice Actor: Grace Holleman

    Gulbis/Kamber/Sheehy Op-Ed Voice Actor: Emma Specht

    Gorsuch/Behringer Op-Ed Voice Actor: Matthew Lucia

    Illustration: Isai Soto



    Music (in order of appearance):

    “The Spring” - Chad Crouch

    “Neo-Noir 1” - Matthew Lucia

    “The Bluff Trail” - Chad Crouch

    “The Light Filtering Canopy” - Chad Crouch

    “Harmony” - Alan Pilijak

    “By the Pound” - Chad Crouch

    “Post-Minimal 1” - Matthew Lucia

    • 28 min
    Fall Break Debate, 50 Years Later

    Fall Break Debate, 50 Years Later

    Welcome back to The Ear, The Eye’s podcast dedicated to documenting, detailing, and excavating Columbia’s history!

    In this week’s episode, reporter Claudia Gohn dives into the history of Columbia’s fall break and why it coincides with Election Day each year. The Ear dives into the proposal by student senators in 1970 to create a 10-day election break and the unique circumstances that informed their debate. This episode looks at the factors that influenced the University’s decision in 1970 and then asks: What does the current 4-day election break mean for Columbia students today? Listen to find out.



    Credits:

    William J. McGill Voice Actor: Sam Hyman

    Illustration: Jules Michaud



    Music (in order of appearance):

    “Window Shopping” - Podington Bear

    “Cirrostratus” - Chad Crouch

    “Many Hands” - Podington Bear

    “Encounter” - Podington Bear

    “GPiano” - Podington Bear

    “Black Is the Color” - Podington Bear

    • 16 min
    Chiseling the City

    Chiseling the City

    Welcome back to The Ear, The Eye’s podcast dedicated to documenting, detailing, and excavating Columbia’s history!

    In this week’s episode, reporter Briani Netzahuatl delves into the relationship between Columbia University and the surrounding neighborhoods of Morningside Heights and West Harlem by examining three key moments: the University’s move uptown to its current location in 1897, the proposed construction of the Morningside Park gymnasium in 1968, and the expansion into Manhattanville in the 2000s. How can these events help us understand the effects of Columbia on the physical landscape we see today? Why is this history particularly relevant during the COVID-19 pandemic? Listen in to find out.



    Credits:

    McGeorge Bundy Voice Actor: Cole Cahill

    Mark Rudd Voice Actor: Paul Hanna

    Illustration: Natalie Tak



    Music (in order of appearance):

    “Five Card Shuffle” — Kevin MacLeod

    “Elipsis” — Chad Crouch

    “Flotsam” — Parallel Park

    “Moonrise” — Chad Crouch

    “Organisms” — Chad Crouch

    “Rice” — Chad Crouch

    “Nature Shuffle” — Ketsa

    “Periwinkle” — Chad Crouch

    “Frost” — Chad Crouch

    “Speaker Joy” — Blue Dot Sessions

    • 22 min
    Two Murders, 47 Years Apart

    Two Murders, 47 Years Apart

    Welcome back to The Ear, The Eye’s podcast dedicated to documenting, detailing, and excavating Columbia’s history!

    In this week’s episode, The Ear delves into the murder of Columbia Law professor Wolfgang Friedmann in 1972 and Columbia’s complicated Public Safety response. Reporter Cole Cahill sheds light on the role that students play in shaping these policing decisions and considers how this chapter of Columbia’s history can inform our community’s continued reaction to a strikingly similar tragedy—the death of Barnard first-year Tessa Majors this past fall.



    Credits:

    McGill Voice Actor: Adam Dornblum

    Illustration: Robert Hunter



    Music (in order of appearance):

    “Running on Empty”—Chad Crouch/Podington Bear

    “Pulsars”—Chad Crouch/Podington Bear

    • 19 min
    The Continued Crisis

    The Continued Crisis

    Welcome back to The Ear, The Eye’s podcast dedicated to documenting, detailing, and excavating Columbia’s history!

    In this week’s episode, reporters Teresa Lawlor and Sam Hyman examine three health crises from Columbia’s history—the 1832 cholera epidemic, the 1918 influenza, and the outbreak of polio on Columbia’s football team in the fall of 1951—in order to better understand how we as a community have navigated issues of public health prior to the coronavirus pandemic. How can these three events—different in scale, symptoms, mortality, and solution—help us make sense of the global pandemic that has so dramatically reshaped our lives this spring? Listen in to find out.



    Credits:

    Columbia Trustees Report Voice Actor: Paul Hanna

    William H. McCastline Voice Actor: Paul Hanna

    Virginia Gildersleeve Voice Actor: Sabrina Hyman

    New York Times Photo Caption Voice Actor: Matt Lawlor

    Columbia Daily Spectator Voice Actor: Ben Lawlor

    Illustration: Robert Hunter



    Music (in order of appearance):

    “Bagatelle Op. 119”—Ludwig van Beethoven, performed by Circus Marcus

    “Lyric Pieces Op. 12 No. 2”—Edvard Grieg, performed by Circus Marcus

    “Phase 2”—Xylo-Ziko

    “Csm”—Podington Bear

    “Steps”—Podington Bear

    “Dry Air”—Podington Bear

    “La Tapa Improvisada”—Circus Marcus

    “Piano Sonata Op. 28”—Ludwig van Beethoven, performed by Karine Gilanyan

    “Starling”—Podington Bear

    “Pulsars”—Podington Bear

    • 36 min
    The Woman at the Center of the Photograph

    The Woman at the Center of the Photograph

    Welcome back to The Ear, The Eye’s podcast dedicated to documenting, detailing, and excavating Columbia’s history!

    In this week’s episode, Mabel Ping-Hua Lee—a brilliant and determined leader—defies easy categorization. Reporter Victoria Li traces Lee’s life from Barnard student to first Chinese-American woman to receive a Columbia Ph.D. to suffragette to director of the First Chinese Baptist Church in Chinatown, where she spent over 40 years of her life before passing away in 1966. What inspired this fascinating and enigmatic woman, from Morningside Heights to the Church on Pell Street? Listen in to find out.



    Credits:

    Hu Shih Voice Actor: Simon Xu

    Dean Christina Kuan Tsu Voice Actor: Susan Li

    Illustration: Liza Evseeva



    Music (in order of appearance):

    “Peacock”—Podington Bear

    “Pianoman Sofa”—Lobo Loco

    “Dark Matter”—Podington Bear

    “The 49th Street Galleria”—Chris Zabriskie

    “Prelude No. 23”—Chris Zabriskie

    • 10 min

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