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GEOGRAPHY EDUCATION

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Mapping Coastal Flood Risk Lags Behind Sea Level Rise

Federal maps help determine who on the coast must buy flood insurance, but many don’t include the latest data. Maryland is now making its own flood maps, so homeowners can see if they’re at risk.

Source: www.npr.org

Geographic themes are overflowing (it was an unintended pun, but I’ll just let that wash over you) in this podcast.  I suggest playing a game early in the year/semester called “find the geography.”  What geographic theme/content areas will your students find in this podcast? 

 

Tagspodcast, mapping, cartography, climate change, environment, watercoastal,  urban, planningurban ecology.

My Family’s Slave

She lived with us for 56 years. She raised me and my siblings without pay. I was 11, a typical American kid, before I realized who she was.

 

The Spanish Crown eventually began phasing out slavery at home and in its colonies, but parts of the Philippines were so far-flung that authorities couldn’t keep a close eye. Traditions persisted under different guises, even after the U.S. took control of the islands in 1898. Today even the poor can have utusans or katulongs (“helpers”) or kasambahays (“domestics”), as long as there are people even poorer. The pool is deep.

Source: www.theatlantic.com

This article created a huge stir from the moment it was published, especially within the U.S. Filipino community.  Slavery is reprehensible, but to most people today, it is incomprehensible to imagine how one human could ever enslave another.  This story of a Filipino family that brought a ‘domestic worker’ with them to the United States is a riveting tale that offers glimpses into the cultural context of modern-day slavery.  The author was born into this family and it’s a painful tale intermingled with agony, love, cruelty, tenderness, guilt, and growth.  This article is a long read, but well worth it.  You can listen to a 55-minute audio version of the article, or also listen to the NPR 5-minute version.    

 

Tags: migrationlaborPhilippines, culture.

From Risking His Life To Saving Lives, Ex-Coal Miner Is Happy To Take The Paycut

The “Brave New Workers” series tells stories of Americans adapting to a changing economy. This week: after years working in the coal mines of West Virginia, a miner charts a new career in health care.

Source: www.npr.org

This series, Brave New Workers, is all about workers adapting to the shifting economic geographies.  Some industries are seen as foundational to a community and there is much angst about the loss of particular jobs.  New technologies are disruptive, and the process of job creation/job loss is sometimes referred to as creative destruction.  My uncle, once about a time, was a typewriter repairman.  Clearly, the personal computer was going to render his niche in the economic system obsolete so he became a web developer.  Not everyone successfully makes a seamless transition, but this collection of stories is emblematic of the modern American worker, needing to nimbly adapt to the labor market.

 

Tagspodcast, industry, manufacturinglabor, economic, USA.  

Memorializing Manzanar

“During World War II the US government incarcerated over 110,000 Japanese Americans, in ten different detention centers throughout the United States.  One of these sites was Manzanar; in 1992, Manzanar was declared a National Historic Site. But apart from the cemetery, there was little there. The committee did not want to settle for a staid, sterile museum and so they worked with the National Park Service to rebuild portions of the camp exactly as they had been during the war. The most powerful symbol might be the site’s newest addition, a replica of the women’s latrine with a trough sink and row of five toilets with no dividers between them. It’s a stark reminder of the humiliation felt by many Japanese Americans during their incarceration.  The annual pilgrimage of Japanese-Americans and others will take place on April 29th, 2017.”

Source: 99percentinvisible.org

How we collectively remember history in the landscape?  Do you erase national embarrassments that open wounds of the past or is the act of memorialization cathartic and part of becoming a better country?  After Pearl Harbor, the U.S. listened to the fears of the public and military officials and interned U.S. citizens of Japanese ancestry.  Today, how this history is remembered is deeply important to many groups in the United States.  There are some great images, videos and primary sources in this episode of the 99 Percent Invisible podcast. 

 

Tagspodcast, culture, California, historical, monumentsplace, landscape.

#RenunciaYa–Quit Already!

Morales will take office in the wake of Guatemala’s worst political crisis in decades, resulting in the resignations of President Otto Pérez Molina, Vice President Roxana Baldetti, and multiple cabinet members—all of whom are now prosecuted for their role in a massive corruption ring.”

Source: gimletmedia.com

How does an online movement become a revolution?  Much has been made about how much organizing for the Arab Spring was conducted online, but it still needed old-fashioned protesting, gathering in the streets, and controlling symbolic public spaces to add meaning to their movement.  This podcast shows the behind-the-scenes look at how a small online Facebook group against corruption in Guatemala, not only pulled down their targeted villain (the vice president), but also eroded support for the president that propped up the whole system.

  

Tags: Guatemala, political, podcast, Middle America.

How Jane Jacobs beat Robert Moses to be the ultimate placemaker

“Jane Jacobs lacked formal training in city planning but became an urban visionary who promoted dense, mixed-use neighborhoods where people interacted on the streets. She also became the nemesis of New York master builder Robert Moses. On our inaugural episode, we’ll explore Jacobs’ legacy and how the ideas and ideals of ‘St. Jane’ hold up today.”

Source: www.slate.com

How do you create a sense of place?  How can you make a neighborhood more vibrant and meaningful to the residents?  These are questions that central to city planners, community organizers, activists, home owners, renters, business owners, and a wide range of local stakeholders.  The Placemakers podcast has many episodes on these topics worth listening to, starting with the one about Jane Jacobs, a leading urbanist who was a proponent of “The Cheerful Hurly-Burly” of the “zoomed in” city life who fought against Robert Moses’ more sterile “zoomed out” spaces of transportation flows.  In another podcast titled “the quest for the perfect place,” the series explores new urbanism and the ideas that have shaped the movement.

 

Tagsplace, neighborhood, urban, planning, urbanism, podcastscale.

Statehood, Politics, and Scale in D.C.

“Washington may be the political center of the free world, but its 670,000 residents don’t have a say in the national legislature. What they do have is a nonvoting delegate in the House of Representatives. Eleanor Holmes Norton can introduce legislation and vote in committee, but she can’t vote on the House floor. Over the course of 13 terms, the ‘Warrior on the Hill’ been fighting to change that.”

Source: www.slate.com

If you haven’t discovered the podcast “Placemakers” you are missing out.  In this episode, they explore the competing political context of Washington D.C. Since this podcast ran, the citizens of the district voted overwhelmingly for statehood, but since the governance of the district operates more at the national scale then on the local level, statehood is not happening anytime soon.  

 

Tagsplace, podcast, political, autonomyscale, Washington DC.

‘Crimetown’ podcasts on Providence No. 1 on iTunes charts

“Providence, once the heart of the New England mafia, was chosen for the first season. The approximately 17 to 20 episodes will follow the patterns of corruption in Rhode Island up through the banking crisis of RISDIC, the impeachment of a Supreme Court justice, and City Hall corruption in Operation Plunder Dome.”

Source: www.providencejournal.com

This is not just a fascinating local story of my new hometown; this is a riveting portrayal of the urban social geographies of organized crime, corruption, and the cosa nostra.  With only three episode to date, they with entertain and inform listeners with delving into the inner working of the mob (and just a heads up–the language will be crass and actual crimes will be discussed–don’t say I didn’t warn you).  To be honest, of course season one of Crimetown dad to been about Providence, and it is all the more compelling knowing the neighborhoods that are being shaped in this historical portrayal of Rhode Island.    

 

Tagsurban, crime, Rhode Island, neighborhood, socioeconomic, poverty, podcast.

 

After a Tornado, Greensburg, Kansas, Rebuilt Green. Was It Worth It?

A decade ago, a tornado wiped out the small town of Greensburg, Kansas. But the town decided to rebuild—as a totally green community. Ten years out, has the green rebuilding program been successful, and is this a model that might be used by other towns? Or is going green harder than it seems?

Source: www.slate.com

If you haven’t discovered the podcast “Placemakers” you are missing out.  The entire series centers around the challenges that confront different types of communities and the opportunities to improve the way things work. They present “stories about the spaces we inhabit and the people who shape them. Join us as we crisscross the country, introducing you to real people in real communities—people who make a difference in how we travel, work, and live. You’ll never look at your community the same way again.”  And yes, that sounds like a whole lot of applied geography to me.   

 

Tagsplace, tornado, weather and climate, planning, podcast.

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