Code Switch

Code Switch

Ever find yourself in a conversation about race and identity where you just get...stuck? Code Switch can help. We're all journalists of color, and this isn't just the work we do. It's the lives we lead. Sometimes, we'll make you laugh. Other times, you'll get uncomfortable. But we'll always be unflinchingly honest and empathetic. Come mix it up with us.... Show More

Episodes

A Sapphire isn't only a jewel—it's also cultural shorthand for an angry black woman. In this episode, we look at where Sapphire was born, and how the stereotype continues to haunt black women, even successful, powerful ones.

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May 7, 2019 44 min

France is the place where for decades you weren't supposed to talk about someone's blackness, unless you said it in English. Today, we're going to meet the people who took a very French approach to change that. (Note: This story contains strong language in English and French.)

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April 30, 2019 21 min

When members of the nation's oldest Mexican-American student organization voted to change its name, it revealed generational tensions around the past, present, and future of the Chicano movement.

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April 23, 2019 35 min

April is National Poetry Month, so on this episode, we're passing the mic to a handful of talented poets — the people who narrate our lives and help us better understand our own experiences.

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April 16, 2019 29 min

For more than two decades, a cellphone store in Washington, D.C. has blasted go-go music right outside of its front door. But a recent noise complaint from a resident of a new, upscale apartment building in the area brought the music to a halt — highlighting the tensions over gentrification in the nation's capital.

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April 9, 2019 33 min

In 1968, thousands of students participated in a series of protests for equity in education that sparked the Chicano Movement. But for two of the students at one struggling high school, that civil unrest — which became known as East L.A. Walkouts — also marked the beginning of a 50-year romance. This week, Code Switch is cosigning that love story, brought to us by our play-cousins at Latino USA.

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Support for Israel has long been the rare bipartisan position among lawmakers in Washington. But recently, several younger, brown members of Congress have vocally questioned the U.S.'s relationship with Israel — and were met with fierce condemnation, including charges that their criticism was anti-Semitic. On this episode: We're talking about why it remains so hard to have nuanced conversations about Israel.

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March 26, 2019 32 min

This week, we tackle reader questions on vegetarianism, the specter of grocery store Columbuses, and the quiet opprobrium directed at "smelly ethnic foods" in the workplace.

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March 19, 2019 37 min

Fifty years ago a multi-racial coalition of students at a commuter college in San Francisco went on strike. And while their bloody, bitter standoff has been largely forgotten, it forever changed higher education in the United States.

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March 12, 2019 32 min

What does "civility" look like and who gets to define it? What about "respectable" behavior? This week, we're looking at how behavior gets policed in public.

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March 5, 2019 22 min

A deadly tornado ripped through Lee County Alabama this past Sunday. An NPR investigation found that white Americans and those with safety nets often receive more federal dollars after a disaster than people of color and Americans with less wealth.

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February 27, 2019 40 min

When Colin Kaepernick stopped standing for the national anthem at NFL games it sparked a nationwide conversation about patriotism and police brutality. Black athletes using their platform to protest injustice has long been a tradition in American history. In this episode we tap in our friends at Throughline to explore three stories of protest that are rarely told but essential to understanding the current debate: the heavyweight bo... Read more

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February 26, 2019 41 min

When Colin Kaepernick stopped standing for the national anthem at NFL games it sparked a nationwide conversation about patriotism and police brutality. Black athletes using their platform to protest injustice has long been a tradition in American history. In this episode we tap in our friends at Throughline to explore three stories of protest that are rarely told but essential to understanding the current debate: the heavyweight bo... Read more

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February 20, 2019 23 min

Anali, a young woman from Los Angeles, wants to break into the film industry. A local program taught her the skills of the trade and the language, but will any of that that matter in an industry that runs mostly on connections?

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February 12, 2019 28 min

Okay, news cycle: you win. We're talking about blackface. This week, we delve into the hidden history of "blackening up" in popular culture — from a certain iconic cartoon mouse's minstrel past to Instagram models trying to pass as black.

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February 6, 2019 27 min

Another week of racial controversies, another week of calls to "start a dialogue on race." What does that even mean? We talk to two veterans of one high-profile attempt at a national conversation on race, who have different views of its effectiveness.

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January 29, 2019 47 min

Some may think of beauty as frivolous and fun, but on this episode, we're examining a few of the ugly ways that its been used to project power.

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January 23, 2019 29 min

Another day, another drama: Last week, a federal judge ruled against the Trump administration's decision to add a controversial citizenship question to the 2020 census. But if the Justice Department has any say, the fight will go on...all the way to the Supreme Court.

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January 15, 2019 38 min

Jason Kim and his father were once very close, but drifted apart after the family came to the United States from Korea. They drifted even further after Jason came out to his parents as gay. But after a health crisis, Jason and his father try to reckon with the silence between them. This week, a story about a family's hopes, dreams, and obligations, brought to us by the dope folks at WNYC's Nancy podcast.

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January 8, 2019 34 min

Meet one of the people caught up in the Trump Administration's hard-line stance on immigration: Javier Zamora. He was living in the US legally under Temporary Protected Status but when the White House threatened to take it away, Javier went back to El Salvador to apply for a new visa. He didn't know if he'd ever return to the US, his home of nearly twenty years.

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