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This American Life

Author: This American Life

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This American Life is a weekly public radio show, heard by 2.2 million people on more than 500 stations. Another 2.5 million people download the weekly podcast. It is hosted by Ira Glass, produced in collaboration with Chicago Public Media, delivered to stations by PRX The Public Radio Exchange, and has won all of the major broadcasting awards.
119 Episodes
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323: The Super

323: The Super

2019-12-1501:01:061

In 1980's New York City, rent is rising: it seems out of control, and residents struggle to keep up. So Jack Hitt helps organize tenants, and threatens a rent strike. This does not go over so well with his building super, who, as it turns out, is a very dangerous man. This and other stories of the mysterious hold supers have on their buildings, or their buildings have on them.
689: Digging Up the Bones

689: Digging Up the Bones

2019-12-0800:59:2553

There's a lot that can be gained from unearthing the past -- learning about oneself, learning about others. But, it doesn't always go how you'd expect.
252: Poultry Slam 2003

252: Poultry Slam 2003

2019-12-0100:59:4441

During the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year's - the highest turkey consumption period of the year - we bring you an annual This American Life tradition: stories of turkeys, chickens, geese, ducks, fowl of all kinds, real and imagined, and their mysterious hold over us. 
Stories about getting back together with your parent, your spouse, your ... Brahman bull. And how it never goes the way you think it's going to.
688: The Out Crowd

688: The Out Crowd

2019-11-1701:08:0083

Reports from the frontlines of the Trump administration's "Remain in Mexico" asylum policy. We hear from asylum seekers waiting across the border in Mexico, in a makeshift refugee camp,  and from the officers who sent them there to wait in the first place. 
687: Small Things Considered

687: Small Things Considered

2019-11-1001:00:3580

Stories about being little. Secret writings in tiny letters. The power of a very small number. And a medication that's supposed to cure shortness. 
686: Umbrellas Up

686: Umbrellas Up

2019-10-2001:12:56124

For over 100 days now, protesters in Hong Kong have taken to the streets every weekend. What it’s like to live through that.
685: We Come From Small Places

685: We Come From Small Places

2019-10-1300:58:4378

The staff goes to one of the biggest parties in New York City, the Labor Day Carnival and the West Indian American Day Parade in Brooklyn.
684: Burn It Down

684: Burn It Down

2019-09-2901:01:43125

Stories of people who decide the only way forward — for real change — is to burn everything to the ground.
683: Beer Summit

683: Beer Summit

2019-09-2201:07:56110

Two people, sitting down over a beer, hashing out their differences and understanding where the other guy is coming from. Hard to imagine these days, right? It's so rare right now that someone is curious enough to actually see the other person's point of view. This week on the show, beer summits. Including going behind the scenes of the most famous one ever.
477: Getting Away With It

477: Getting Away With It

2019-09-1500:59:1194

Stories of people breaking the rules fully, completely and with no bad consequences. Some justify this by saying they’re doing it for others, or for a greater good. Some really don’t care. And, unlike the mealy weaklings you usually hear on this program: None of these wrongdoers seem regretful about what they’ve done in the slightest.
205: Plan B

205: Plan B

2019-09-0801:00:05106

There's the thing you plan to do, and then there's the thing you end up doing. Most of us start off our lives with some Plan A, which we abandon...switching to a Plan B, which becomes our life.
388: Rest Stop

388: Rest Stop

2019-09-0101:00:2380

Nine radio reporters. Two days. One rest stop on the New York State Thruway. Stories of people who are just passing through, and the ones who can’t leave, because this is where their jobs are.
682: Ten Sessions

682: Ten Sessions

2019-08-2500:59:40204

What if someone told you about a type of therapy that could help you work through unhealed trauma in just ten sessions? Some people knock through it in two weeks. Jaime Lowe tried the therapy—and recorded it.
681: Escape From the Lab

681: Escape From the Lab

2019-08-1800:59:33131

What happens when our most ingenious creations actually make it out into the world.
409: Held Hostage

409: Held Hostage

2019-08-1100:59:18108

Stories of people held captive — by criminals, by paperwork, and in one man's case, his own body — and the ways they try to cope.
585: In Defense of Ignorance

585: In Defense of Ignorance

2019-08-0401:02:40149

Exactly how incompetent you are. What your ex’s best friend really thinks of you. The approximate time that you will die. Some things in life are better not to know about. And sometimes there can be a benefit to not knowing. In this episode — examples of ignorance truly being bliss, or even being an asset.
680: The Weight Of Words

680: The Weight Of Words

2019-07-2800:58:38165

Words mean things, but some words are especially meaningful — whether in a survival manual, a song lyric, or a slur.
165: Americans In Paris

165: Americans In Paris

2019-07-2100:59:07123

Many Americans have dreamy and romantic ideas about Paris, notions which probably trace back to the 1920s vision of Paris created by the expatriate Americans there. But what's it actually like in Paris if you're an American, without rose-colored glasses?
679: Save the Girl

679: Save the Girl

2019-07-1401:00:05132

People go on missions to save young girls from danger. But sometimes they get so caught up in the mission that it overshadows the girl herself.
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Comments (1028)

Roy Karny

I found story of the mother and Kindle delightful! Sent to my mother (grin).

Dec 15th
Reply

mister cingılbört

Goob but not for listening while eating.

Dec 11th
Reply

jhamel

This was a great episode. Very interesting and I was impressed with the humanity in it. The humbleness, the mistakes and the regrets that people felt. I hope Lina, after listening to her review, learned to be present. Parents aren't around long in the scheme of things, especially when we live so far from them. Coming from someone who has family who rarely talked about feelings and then it was too late to ever hear them, please be present. Stop complaining unnecessarily and listen. They deserve your attention the most in those moments.

Dec 10th
Reply (1)

Rhonda F.

I think this is absolutely hilarious! Christmas (can I say that?) has become so horribly commercial it's virtually unrecognizable from even 20 years ago. I don't hate the holiday but I tend to withdraw from it because I can't stand being out there in the crowds fighting for parking spaces, jockeying for a good position at locked department store doors for their opening, etc. I admire anyone that resists the temptation to prove their love by how much they spend.

Dec 10th
Reply

Rachel Mandell VanDemark

A little weird 😜, but I liked it.

Dec 9th
Reply

Brian with a Y

Awesome, as expected.

Dec 9th
Reply (1)

Amber M

This was horribly boring.

Dec 6th
Reply

snosaer

I love love casino gambling stories, i don't even gamble

Dec 5th
Reply (1)

Leo Ramz

10:50 mins you're wrong, he actually says this is my friend ..

Dec 5th
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Jennifer LyBarger

Makes me ashamed to hear how these people are treated, turned away to be kidnapped or worse!! We should be doing everything we can to help them. What if the roles were reversed? What then?? Oh no, that wouldn't be tolerated then. While Trump sits comfortably in the White House with his immigrant wife. These people live in constant fear so of course "David" and his children have PTSD. So inhumane, we could help these people but Trump ties immigrations hands. All Trump cares about is Power and money. Ego driven POS. He needs to be put in the same situation these poor people are in. He needs to be humbled!! If only!!

Dec 3rd
Reply (1)

Adam Gamboa

What a terrible episode. I made it a quarter of the way through.

Dec 3rd
Reply (1)

Patrick Glang

This is a rough episode. I get that pretending there is a talking personality for a stuffed duck and that the absurdity of it all is kind of entertainin. This type of absurdity is pretty common. It's so pedestrian, basic, and boring. Long time TAL fan, still a fan, but this episode is not even close to good.

Dec 2nd
Reply

Maxwell Smart

I thought all 3 stories were unforgettable.

Nov 30th
Reply (1)

kevin amos

quick comment- in the first story it is suggested that "love" and "joy" don't exist in Iran. Seems to me that "love" is present in many forms regardless of were we are from, our culture and background. I'm sure there are millions of couples in Iran who are "happy" in there romantic life. America does not define love/joy.

Nov 28th
Reply (1)

Maximiliano Vazquez

Fuckin anoying that last part.

Nov 26th
Reply (3)

J B

Trumps immigration policy is the same as Obama's. Sorry correction Obama's was much harsher but suddenly it's wrong when Orange man does it.

Nov 25th
Reply (3)

Sander

Great episode! My favorite so far.

Nov 24th
Reply

B. C.

The part where the immigration officer acknowledges that the refugees are in danger, that the officer believes them, but they sending them back into danger was heart-rending.

Nov 23rd
Reply

Heidi Moffett

Having had pet rats, this is a horrible one.

Nov 20th
Reply (1)

Peggy Huber

Is there anything we can do to help protect or support refugees like these families? Reputable organizations to contact or donate to? What can be done to stop the persecution in these countries?

Nov 20th
Reply (1)
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