22 episodes

Acclaimed poets Jericho Brown and Brionne Janae join forces with “rogue scholar” Aífe Murray for a podcast that celebrates what works and breaks down what doesn’t in this award-winning and popular series. They interrogate what's historically and emotionally true in each episode of Dickinson -- and always bring it back to the poems that continue to intrigue, attract, and inspire.

The Slave Is Gone: The Show That Talks Back to AppleTV+'s Dickinson Jericho Brown, Brionne Janae, and Aífe Murray

    • Arts
    • 4.9 • 22 Ratings

Acclaimed poets Jericho Brown and Brionne Janae join forces with “rogue scholar” Aífe Murray for a podcast that celebrates what works and breaks down what doesn’t in this award-winning and popular series. They interrogate what's historically and emotionally true in each episode of Dickinson -- and always bring it back to the poems that continue to intrigue, attract, and inspire.

    S1E10: “I’m a poet — and you're not going to stop me” (Season Finale)

    S1E10: “I’m a poet — and you're not going to stop me” (Season Finale)

    Dickinson Season One ends with a funeral, a wedding, and another Funeral, in Emily’s brain.

    Is Emily subconsciously guilty about her relationship with Sue? Was Mrs. Dickinson a lush? Did George Gould really go for gold? And why are season finales so difficult? Plus, new poems from our cohosts — and the Dickinson verse that launched #emisueforevermore.

    Jericho, Breezy and Aífe talk back to Dickinson Season One, Episode Ten "I Felt a Funeral, in My Brain."

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    Poems featured in this episode:

    One Sister have I in our house by Emily Dickinson

    I Will Die Alone by Brionne Janae

    Sitcom by Jericho Brown

    I felt a Funeral, in my Brain by Emily Dickinson

    • 53 min
    Bonus: Emily Dickinson, multimedia artist?

    Bonus: Emily Dickinson, multimedia artist?

    In the finale of Dickinson, Season One, Emily gives Sue a poem so small she has to use a magnifying glass to read it.

    On this bonus episode, Jericho, Breezy and Aife explore Emily Dickinson's radical experimentation with what we'd now call "mixed media" — using the skills of women's work the AppleTV+ series portrays her as not possessing.

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    That poem Emily gives Sue:

    One Sister have I in our house

    • 5 min
    S1E9: "Huge, cosmic kinds of leaps" w/Tracy K. Smith

    S1E9: "Huge, cosmic kinds of leaps" w/Tracy K. Smith

    A solar eclipse darkens the skies over Amherst. Is it a miracle of God's creation? A disturbing omen? Or just a great place to take a date? 

    In the series' most emotionally wrenching episode so far, Emily grapples with all these possibilities — and ends up begging Death to let Ben live. 

    Breezy, Jericho, and Aífe, joined by special guest and two-time US Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith, talk back to Season 1, Episode 9 of Dickinson: "'Faith' Is a Fine Invention." 

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    Poems featured in the episode: 

    I’m “wife”—I’ve finished that by Emily Dickinson 

    Once or twice or three times, I saw something by Marie Howe 

    The Angels by Tracy K. Smith 

    “Faith” is a fine invention by Emily Dickinson

    • 55 min
    S1E8: "Are you from Whitman or are you from Dickinson?" w/Chen Chen

    S1E8: "Are you from Whitman or are you from Dickinson?" w/Chen Chen

    It's Christmas Eve at the Dickinsons, and they've got visitors, including bestselling author Louisa May Alcott (on a runner's high) and just-returned-from-Spain Aunt Lavinia (experiencing widow's euphoria). Conspicuously absent (though perhaps not missed) is Edward Dickinson, who heads off to DC — but not without leaving a double-edged gift for Emily.

    Could Emily cook? Were Austin and Sue into hunching? And does being a writer have to mean turning your back on your family?

    Breezy, Jericho, and Aífe, joined by special guest poet Chen Chen, talk back to Season 1, Episode 8 of Dickinson: “There's a Certain Slant of Light"

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    Poems featured:

    They shut me up in Prose by Emily Dickinson

    Origin Story by Chen Chen

    There's a certain Slant of light by Emily Dickinson

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    Songs referred to:

    Left Alone by Fiona Apple

    Love Is Stronger Than Pride by Sade

    If You Don't Believe by Deniece Williams

    Let's Go Crazy and 1999 by Prince

    Lovin' You by Minnie Riperton

    • 47 min
    Bonus: "The language can be bigger than a writer" w/Evie Shockley

    Bonus: "The language can be bigger than a writer" w/Evie Shockley

    On Friday, we release bonus material that takes you deeper into the world of Emily Dickinson, and the work of our guest poets. This week Evie Shockley talks about the complexities of Zora Neale Hurston's legacy — and how Black women writers have found meanings and possibilities in Emily Dickinson's poetry far beyond what Dickinson might have had in mind.

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    Referred to in the episode:

    "Coloring Dickinson: Race, Influence, and Lyric Dis-reading" by Evie Shockley

    • 10 min
    S1E7: "Like science fiction in reverse" w/Evie Shockley

    S1E7: "Like science fiction in reverse" w/Evie Shockley

    It’s Election Day, and Rep. Edward Dickinson is showing his true colors, culminating in a literal blow to Emily.

    Was Edward Dickinson dead set against his daughter becoming a poet? Can his refusal to embrace abolitionism be traced to the fact that both his and his wife's family fortunes depended on enslaved labor? And if her family hadn't profited from slavery, would Emily Dickinson have had the space to write the poems we continue to revere?

    Breezy, Jericho, and Aífe, joined by special guest, poet and scholar Evie Shockley, talk back to Season 1, Episode 7 of Dickinson: “We lose — because we win”

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    Learn more about what our researcher Anna Smith uncovered about the ties between the Dickinsons' family wealth and enslavement: 

    A Racial History of Amherst College: "There Are No Good Billionaires, or the Trask-Dickinson Connection"

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    Poems featured in this episode: 

    A Burdock—clawed my Gown by Emily Dickinson

    daddy's girl by Evie Shockley

    We lose—because we win by Emily Dickinson

    • 51 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
22 Ratings

22 Ratings

helena6530 ,

Sublime Podcast!

Every episode is witty, and also provides such a needed lens for Dickinson.

Lieppy ,

Great show!

Really enjoy this podcast. It always informs and surprises!

Amy Belding Brown ,

A Delight

What a fabulous podcast—an eclectic look at Emily Dickinson through the eyes of two wonderful contemporary poets. A must-listen!

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