54 episodes

Exploring the evolving identity of the American West.

Produced by Wyoming Public Media and PRX, The Modern West takes you on a sound-rich journey into some of America's most iconic landscapes. Guided by host Melodie Edwards' personal connection to the region, it's an unflinching look at the American West--its problematic history, its modern-day struggles and resilience, and how its present and future are being shaped.

The Modern West Wyoming Public Media

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.6 • 232 Ratings

Exploring the evolving identity of the American West.

Produced by Wyoming Public Media and PRX, The Modern West takes you on a sound-rich journey into some of America's most iconic landscapes. Guided by host Melodie Edwards' personal connection to the region, it's an unflinching look at the American West--its problematic history, its modern-day struggles and resilience, and how its present and future are being shaped.

    The Rolling Stone: The Great Individualist Part 1

    The Rolling Stone: The Great Individualist Part 1

    For the Elliot family, there isn't just one kind of cowboy. There are guys like Jake who chase the idea of the rodeo star, never sinking roots, a rolling stone. And then there's Jim, the hardworking and intimidating rancher. In this episode, we bust some myths about what it means to be a "real" cowboy and whether ranching ever measures up to our American ideals.

    • 27 min
    Se Benefician De Ella: The Great Individualist Part 2

    Se Benefician De Ella: The Great Individualist Part 2

    The Abeyta family has been driving sheep down from the mountains of southern Colorado for generations. But it hasn't been easy to keep that tradition alive – they've had to fight for it. Through their eyes, we trace back the beginnings of the cowboy to the Mexican vaquero and find out how those adventurous roots are still very much alive in the American southwest.

    • 34 min
    Cows = Civilization: The Great Individualist Part 3

    Cows = Civilization: The Great Individualist Part 3

    The history of how we brought the pastoral cow to live on the arid lands of the West is a violent one. Jim Elliot grew up in the shadow of that history and his stories are quintessential cowboy, full of guns, death and hard winters. But even Jim recognized the tragedy of the attempted annihilation of Indigenous culture and bison to make way for cows. But now, there's growing hope among tribes as bison make a comeback.

    • 39 min
    Nothing Heals: The Great Individualist Part 4

    Nothing Heals: The Great Individualist Part 4

    This time, we head to Wyoming's Red Desert - and hear the history of the 19th-century range wars. They led to laws requiring grazing fees and regular land health check-ups. But over a century later, some say these regulations haven't done enough to protect our wild spaces. Not to mention our climate.

    • 34 min
    Big Is Fragile: The Great Individualist Part 5

    Big Is Fragile: The Great Individualist Part 5

    We follow the cow's journey from the mountain pasture to the feedlot and eventually the slaughterhouse. Along the way, we hear from animal welfare advocate Temple Grandin and cattle handlers who all want a fairer, more humane market – and one not so monopolized by large corporations.

    • 33 min
    Only One Bite: The Great Individualist Part 6

    Only One Bite: The Great Individualist Part 6

    The Rardins are father and son cowboys watching climate change threaten their way of life. They've given up on the old idea of "get big or get out" and joined the regenerative ranching movement. Inspired by how bison improve the land, they raise cattle to protect grasses and reduce emissions. But for many, it's still a financial risk.

    • 33 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
232 Ratings

232 Ratings

Seeds@312 ,

Yup!

This podcast takes a thoughtful and honest look at the actual cultures of the west, which doesn’t always match the stereotypes. Well done!

419Dggusji346 ,

I Wanted to enjoy it.

Unfortunately the first episode I listened to obsessed about homosexuals and women that write a about them. Then I went to the first eoidsodes and see “drag queen” in the title.
So if you’re a left wing woman you might like it. Otherwise..

BoomerScout ,

Great reporting and storytelling

I have listened to several of these episodes and have learned a tremendous amount about North Park Colorado and Wyoming. Thank you!

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