118 episodes

Host Michael Shields brings you Beyond the Margin, guiding you deeper into the stories told at the online literary and cultural magazine, Across the Margin. Listen in as they take you on a storytelling journey, one where you are bound to meet a plethora of intriguing writers, wordsmiths, poets, artists, activists, musicians, and unhinged eccentrics illustrating the notion that there are captivating stories to be found everywhere.

Across the Margin: The Podcast Osiris Media


    • Arts
    • 4.9 • 20 Ratings

Host Michael Shields brings you Beyond the Margin, guiding you deeper into the stories told at the online literary and cultural magazine, Across the Margin. Listen in as they take you on a storytelling journey, one where you are bound to meet a plethora of intriguing writers, wordsmiths, poets, artists, activists, musicians, and unhinged eccentrics illustrating the notion that there are captivating stories to be found everywhere.

    Episode 117: Paradise with Lizzie Johnson

    Episode 117: Paradise with Lizzie Johnson

    This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with Lizzie Johnson, a staff writer for the Washington Post. Previously, Johnson worked at the San Francisco Chronicle, where she reported on fifteen of the deadliest, largest, and most destructive blazes in modern California history, and covered over thirty communities impacted by wildfires. Recently she released a book entitled Paradise: One Town's Struggle To Survive An American Wildfire — the focus of this episode — which serves as the definitive first hand account of California’s Camp Fire, the nation’s deadliest wildfire in a century. Paradise is a riveting examination of what went wrong and how to avert future tragedies as the Climate Crisis unfolds.


    On November 8, 2018, the people of Paradise, California, awoke to a mottled gray sky and gusty winds. Soon the Camp Fire, the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California’s history was upon them, consuming an acre a second. Less than two hours after the fire ignited, the town was engulfed in flames, the terrified residents trapped in their homes and cars. By the next morning, eighty-five people were dead. As a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, Lizzie Johnson was there as the town of Paradise burned. She saw the smoldering rubble of a historic covered bridge and the beloved Black Bear Diner and she stayed long afterward, visiting shelters, hotels, and makeshift camps. Drawing upon her years of on-the-ground reporting, and reams of public records, including 911 calls and testimony from a grand jury investigation, Johnson provides a minute-by-minute account of the Camp Fire, following residents and first responders as they fight to save themselves and their town. We see a young mother fleeing with her newborn; a school bus full of children in search of an escape route; and a group of paramedics, patients, and nurses trapped in a cul-de-sac, fending off the fire with rakes and hoses. In Paradise, Johnson documents this unfolding tragedy with empathy and nuance. But she also investigates the root causes, from runaway climate change to a deeply flawed alert system to Pacific Gas and Electric’s decades-long neglect of critical infrastructure. A cautionary tale for a new era of megafires, Paradise is the gripping story of a town wiped off the map and the determination of its people to rise again. In this episode, host Michael Shields and Lizzie Johnson explore how Climate Change has increased the intensity and size of wildfires throughout the world, how economic factors have increasingly swelled the population in the wildland-urban-interface, the challenges of evacuating the entirety of a town, forest management suppression miscalculations and the need for “controlled” burns, the emotional toll of reporting on tragedies, and much, much more.


    This episode concludes with a deeply affecting song by John-Michael Sun, a Camp Fire survivor. Listen to the entirety of the song here.
     
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    • 41 min
    Episode 116: The Big Scary "S" Word with Yael Bridge

    Episode 116: The Big Scary "S" Word with Yael Bridge

    This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with Emmy-nominated documentary filmmaker Yael Bridge. Bridge is the producer behind Left on Purpose, winner of the Audience Award at DOC NYC, and also Saving Capitalism, starring former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich, which was nominated for an Emmy Award in Business and Economics. Her latest documentary, The Big Scary “S” Word, which is the focus of this episode, delves into the rich history of the American socialist movement and follows the people striving to build a socialist future today. In this enlightening documentary, a former Marine and a public school teacher in two different states find themselves broke and unable to sustain their livelihoods despite being employed. Activated by the energy of the 2016 Bernie Sanders presidential campaign and the murmurs of a state-wide teacher strike, both turn to socialism, a once-fringe ideology, to tackle problems larger than themselves. With inequality growing, a climate catastrophe looming, and right-wing extremism ascending around the world, many Americans are wondering whether capitalism is to blame. But what is the alternative? Socialism is plagued by conflicting definitions. Is it dictatorship or democracy? Norway or Venezuela? Reform or revolution? The Big Scary “S” Word explores where American socialism has been, why it was suppressed, and imagines what a renewed American socialism might look like. In this episode host Michael Shields and Yael Bridge converse on the inadequately discussed and rich history of socialism in America, revealing that socialism is in fact, as American as apple pie. They explore the roots of current misconceptions about socialism, expose the threat that capitalism poses to human life, expound on the growing appreciation of socialism in America, and much, much more.


    Learn more about The Big Scary "S" Word and sign up for updates here!
     
     
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    • 37 min
    Episode 115: Everyone Loves Live Music with Dr. Fabian Holt

    Episode 115: Everyone Loves Live Music with Dr. Fabian Holt

    This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast presents an interview with Dr. Fabian Holt, associate professor in the Department of Communication and Arts at Roskilde University. He is the author of Genre in Popular Music and of Everyone Loves Live Music: A Theory of Performance Institutions, the focus of this episode. For decades, millions of music fans have gathered every summer in parks and fields to hear their favorite bands at such renowned festivals as Lollapalooza, Coachella, and Glastonbury. How did these and countless other festivals across the globe evolve into glamorous pop culture events, and how are they changing our relationship to music, leisure, and public culture? In Everyone Loves Live Music, Dr. Holt looks beyond the marketing hype to show how festivals and other institutions of musical performance have evolved in recent decades, as these once meaningful sources of community and culture are increasingly consumed by corporate giants. Examining a diverse range of cases across Europe and the United States, Dr. Holt upends commonly-held ideas of live music and introduces a pioneering theory of performance institutions. He explores the fascinating history of the club and the festival experience both in San Francisco and New York, as well as a number of European cities. This book also surveys the social forces shaping live music as small, independent venues become corporatized and as festivals transform to promote consumerist trappings. Dr. Holt’s book further provides insight into the broader relationship between culture and community in the twenty-first century. Everyone Loves Live Music reveals how our contemporary enthusiasm for live music is more fraught than we would like to think. In this episode host Michael Shields and Dr. Fabian Holt explore the ins-and-outs of Everyone Loves Music, discussing the history of music festivals, the joys and community they can offer in the most ideal of form, while dissecting in depth how popular music festivals have been developed into mass-market commodities by a cultural industry and capitalistic societies.
     
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    • 37 min
    Episode 114: The Psychological Roots of the Climate Crisis with Sally Weintrobe

    Episode 114: The Psychological Roots of the Climate Crisis with Sally Weintrobe

    In this episode host Michael Shields interviews Sally Weintrobe, a Fellow of The British Psychoanalytical Society and a founder member of the Climate Psychology Alliance who Chairs the International Psychoanalytic Association’s (IPA’s) Committee on Climate. In 2021 she won an award from the IPA for her climate work. Her past publications include, as editor and contributor, Engaging with Climate Change, short-listed in 2014 for the International Gradiva Prize for contributions to psychoanalysis. Her recent book, Psychological Roots of the Climate Crisis: Neoliberal Exceptionalism and The Culture of Uncare, which is the focus of this episode, tells the story of a fundamental fight between a caring and an uncaring imagination. It helps us to recognize the uncaring imagination in politics, in culture, and also in ourselves.In her enlightening and important book, Sally Weintrobe argues that achieving the shift to greater care requires us to stop colluding with Exceptionalism, the rigid psychological mindset largely responsible for the climate crisis. People in this mindset believe that they are entitled to have the lion's share and that they can 'rearrange' reality with magical omnipotent thinking whenever reality limits these felt entitlements. Throughout the episode host Michael Shields and Sally Wintrobe explore the themes present in Psychological Roots of the Climate Crisis, exploring in depth how the rigid psychological mindset of Exceptionalism is largely responsible for the Climate Crisis. They also explore how lively entitlement powers the will to act for and care for others, how changing demographics are motivating the neoliberal empire to act more manipulative and brutal to hold onto power, how the Climate Crisis is affecting today’s youth psychologically, and much, much more.
     
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    • 42 min
    Episode 113: The Queen of Basketball with Ben Proudfoot

    Episode 113: The Queen of Basketball with Ben Proudfoot

    In this episode host Michael Shields interviews Ben Proudfoot, the Oscar nominated creative force behind Breakwater Studios. Dedicated to the art of the short documentary, the studio’s work has been recognized by the Sundance Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, The Emmys, The Webbys, James Beard Foundation, and Telluride Film Festival among others. His film A Concerto is a Conversation, co-directed by Kris Bowers and executive produced by Ava DuVernay, debuted at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival, and received an Academy Award nomination for Best Documentary Short Subject. Proudfoot’s latest documentary, The Queen of Basketball, is the story of Lucy Harris, a pioneer in women's basketball who led a rural Mississippi college to three national titles, scored the first basket in women's Olympic history in 1976 and was remarkably the first and only woman to be drafted into the NBA. In 1992, she became the first Black woman to be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. Throughout the episode Michael and Ben expound upon Lucy's incredible story, from her upbringing in rural Mississippi to her unparalleled dominance playing college basketball, unto her history making run in the Olympics, and beyond. They also explore what it means to Lucy to be featured in a documentary, how extraordinary it was that she was drafted to play in the National Basketball Association, all the important and fascinating work Ben is doing with Breakwater Studios, his Almost Famous anthology series, and so much more in an episode that serves as an ode to one of the most important American athletes of the 20th century.
     
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    • 24 min
    Episode 112: White Radicalism and Black Power in 1960s Rock with Patrick Burke

    Episode 112: White Radicalism and Black Power in 1960s Rock with Patrick Burke

    This episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast features an interview with Patrick Burke, associate professor of music at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. Burke is the author of Come In and Hear the Truth: Jazz and Race on 52nd Street and also the recently released Tear Down The Walls: White Radicalism and Black Power in 1960s Rock — the focus of this episode. From the earliest days of rock and roll, white artists regularly achieved fame, wealth, and success that eluded the Black artists whose work had preceded and inspired them. This dynamic continued into the 1960s, even as the music and its fans grew to be more engaged with political issues regarding race. In Tear Down the Walls, Burke tells the story of white American and British rock musicians’ engagement with Black Power politics and African American music during the volatile years of 1968 and 1969. The book sheds new light on a significant but overlooked facet of 1960s rock — white musicians and audiences casting themselves as political revolutionaries by enacting a romanticized vision of African American identity. These artists’ attempts to cast themselves as revolutionary were often naïve, misguided, or arrogant, but they could also reflect genuine interest in African American music and culture and sincere investment in anti-racist politics. White musicians such as those in popular rock groups Jefferson Airplane, the Rolling Stones, and the MC5, fascinated with Black performance and rhetoric, simultaneously perpetuated a long history of racial appropriation and misrepresentation and made thoughtful, self-aware attempts to respectfully present African American music in forms that white leftists found politically relevant. In Tear Down the Walls Patrick Burke neither condemns white rock musicians as inauthentic nor elevates them as revolutionary. The result is a fresh look at 1960s rock that provides new insight into how popular music both reflects and informs our ideas about race and how white musicians and activists can engage meaningfully with Black political movements — and you can learn all about these ideas in this informative, music and history-centric episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast.
     
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    • 33 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
20 Ratings

20 Ratings

Daddy Unscripted Podcast ,

Fascinating Minds, INDEED!

There are so many excellent episodes to choose from with this podcast. And, I don't just find myself going to the ones that I immediately think: "Oh, yeah... that's in my wheelhouse". And bonus: the ones that aren't maybe something I would necessarily imagine myself being wowed by... I am usually very pleasantly surprised! Can't wait to see where else this podcast goes down these roads!

letsbabbleon ,

A podcast and a road trip

We were getting out of DC and driving to a new hiking location in VA. We decided to listen to Beyond the Margin's first podcast. As we were traveling through the winding roads of VA, the segment The Banjo came on. I could picture the father and son sitting on the porch of the houses we were passing by and I quickly got lost in the story. When we got to our location we had not finished the podcast. It was a sunny day out so we laid on the ground, starred up at the sky and listened to the segment Pinwheel. We sat around for awhile, not even realizing that the podcast had ended. We were both deep in our thoughts about a bond with a family member, a 30 second segment of our day and a chance encounter when we realized that we should start our hike.

We cannot wait for the next podcast and see where it will take us. Maybe it will be the next soundtrack to our road trip.

chazferrari ,

Wonderful story telling

For fans of The Moth, This American Life, and other story telling / journalistic shows with a bit more of an artistic flair. Great accompaniment to their online publications, which are also worth checking out. Looking forward to see how future episodes develop!

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