Radical Imagination

Radical Imagination

Racism, toxic inequality, persistent poverty, climate change: these are big serious problems, and if you believe they require big audacious solutions, then this is the podcast for you. Hosted by Angela Glover Blackwell, Founder-in-Residence at PolicyLink, Radical Imagination focuses on radical solutions to our society’s most pressing problems. It features conversations with thinkers and changemakers from multiple fields working to deliver equity wins at scale.Tune in to Radical Imagination, for stories and solutions that are fueling change.

Episodes

September 17, 2021 23 min

Debt continues to drown millions of young people, families, and retirees, especially Black and Brown communities who bear a disproportionate impact. In this episode of Radical Imagination, host Angela Glover Blackwell speaks with Astra Taylor, a filmmaker, activist and the director of the Debt Collective, a membership union who are calling for the cancellation of all types of debt.

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Last November Los Angeles County voted to dismantle the largest youth juvenile system in the country to create a new approach where care is prioritized over punishment. Radical Imagination host Angela Glover Blackwell speaks with youth grassroots organizer Kent Mendoza. He was incarcerated as a youth and was involved in the reimagining of a new system. We also hear from James Bell, the founding president of the Haywood Burns Instit...

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As Covid-19 continues to sweep the world and most countries, especially in the Global South, struggle to access vaccines, Radical Imagination takes a fresh look at how the US patent system keeps billions of people at home and abroad from obtaining life-saving medicines. Since our first episode on this topic, early in the pandemic, the situation has become more dire. In India, one of the world’s largest vaccine producers, almost nob...

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June 25, 2021 27 min

Artificial intelligence and algorithms are increasingly used to make life-changing decisions in policing, lending, hiring, renting, health care, and many other realms. The technology has come under fire for encoding and intensifying racial bias. But what if AI could be transformed into a tool for fighting discrimination and inequality? Host Angela Glover Blackwell discusses this intriguing possibility with Black in AI co-founder, a...

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May 14, 2021 27 min

Social justice activists tend to be so driven to fix tough systemic problems that we often overlook the obvious: We want to create a society filled with joy and satisfaction for all. In this episode of Radical Imagination, we celebrate pleasure and explore its importance in the work of societal transformation. Host Angela Glover Blackwell talks with adrienne maree brown, author Pleasure Activism: The Politics of Feeling Good. Join ...

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April 12, 2021 28 min

An economy that works for all depends on a robust system of caregiving. That has become all too clear during the pandemic, as 2.5 million women were pushed out of the workforce to care for family members. This episode of Radical Imagination looks at the growing movement to reimagine care across the lifespan, recognize it as essential infrastructure, invest in it, and improve wages and labor protections for the workers — mostly Blac...

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What would our economy look like if it put people before profits? For one thing, nobody would have to accept the sub-minimum wage of $2.13, which many states allow for restaurant workers -- a legacy of slavery that marginalizes and impoverishes a wide swath of a workforce made up largely of people of color and immigrants. 

In this episode of Radical Imagination, host Angela Glover Blackwell speaks with Saru Jayaraman, president of O...

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Radical Imagination opens with a deep dive into the 1921 massacre of hundreds of Black people in the thriving business district of Tulsa, Oklahoma. We examine how history books erased that atrocity and distorted so much of Black history. Host Angela Glover Blackwell talks with Hannibal B. Johnson, historian and Education Chair for the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Commission, about the radical effort to make the story of Tulsa's Bla...

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November 28, 2020 24 min

San Francisco’s District Attorney Chesa Boudin was elected on the promise of bringing justice to the criminal "justice" system. He's part of a new wave of reform-minded prosecutors who are trying to change the system, eliminate the most harmful practices, and bring accountability to policing. Host Angela Glover Blackwell talks with Boudin about his efforts to bring fairness and compassion to a system that is oppressive ...

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October 10, 2020 28 min

In this episode of Radical Imagination we follow up on our coverage of police abolition. Host Angela Glover Blackwell speaks with human rights lawyer and organizer Derecka Purnell, whose advocacy has led to the dismissal of thousands of cases based on unconstitutional policing practices. We first explored the abolition movement a year ago — before the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Black people, spurred nation...

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Well before Covid-19, Black Americans struggled to access healthcare and had disproportionately high rates of chronic illness and death. Nowhere is this more glaring than in the Mississippi Delta, where Black people with diabetes are commonly treated by amputation and are three times more likely to die of the disease than their White counterparts. Host Angela Glover Blackwell speaks with Dr. Foluso Fakorede, who moved to the region...

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August 1, 2020 29 min

A group of women in Hawaii are showing the nation that post-pandemic economic recovery can be visionary, just, and transformative. They have crafted a plan that centers women, insists on gender equality, and advances deep cultural change. In this episode of Radical Imagination, host Angela Glover Blackwell speaks with Khara Jabola-Carolus, the executive director of Hawaii’s Commission on the Status of Women, which released the plan...

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June 2, 2020 22 min

More than two million Americans live without access to clean, running water or a working toilette at home. Millions more predominantly in places like Flint, Michigan, the Navajo Nation, and migrant farmworker communities in California’s Central Valley have been disproportionately affected by high levels of led and arsenic in the water. In this episode of Radical Imagination, host Angela Glover Blackwell speaks with US Water Allianc...

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May 1, 2020 26 min

Host Angela Glover Blackwell talks with writer, journalist and activist Tiq Milan about the the limiting and often toxic ways our society thinks about gender, and how we can do better. While the nation has come far in its inclusion of the LGBTQ community in recent decades, we have a long way to go. At least 25 transgender or gender-non-conforming people were reported murdered in 2019, and that’s an undercount, because most attacks ...

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April 9, 2020 25 min

As Covid-19 sweeps the world, life feels too much like science fiction. On this episode of Radical Imagination, we explore an idea that’s tailor-made for this distressing moment. It’s called visionary fiction, and it uses sci-fi and fantasy to imagine not a dystopian future, but a better world — without poverty, prisons and inequality. It’s more than a literary genre; it’s a movement of people of color working to create the change ...

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For many years, undocumented students who came to the US as minors have been excluded from getting federal funding like grants or loans for college. While 23 states grant undocumented students in-state tuition, three states - Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina - have a form of admissions ban against undocumented students. In 2010, the state banned undocumented students from applying to its top public universities and required the...

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February 28, 2020 33 min

We kick off season two of the Radical Imagination podcast with the story of two mothers who were experiencing homelessness. They moved into a house owned by an investment firm but sitting vacant for nearly two years. That courageous act, in Oakland, California, brought national attention to the housing crisis. Host Angela Glover Blackwell talks with Dominique Walker about why she occupied the house and about the collective she co-f...

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Radical Imagination returns with host Angela Glover Blackwell in conversation with thinkers and changemakers on issues ranging from reimagining gender and visionary fiction, to housing as a human right and changing the criminal-legal system. 

Get ready to be enlightened, inspired, and moved to think in radically new ways. 


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December 15, 2019 32 min

Imagine an America free of urban gun violence. Host Angela Glover Blackwell speaks with Devone Boggan, CEO of Advance Peace in Richmond, California, a visionary program that offers young men with a history of gun offenses life-changing opportunities to work as community peacemakers. In this episode, the season one finale, we also hear from James Houston, who served 18 years in prison for shooting and killing a man. Houston is now a...

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December 3, 2019 20 min

A federal job guarantee is an old idea making its way back this election cycle. It’s controversial and considered radical—but what makes more sense than making sure that everyone who needs a job can get one? A job guarantee would bring financial stability to millions of families. And it would put people to work doing things the nation needs, such as building affordable housing and caring for children. In this episode, Angela Glover...

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