Small farmers in the northeast of Madagascar produce 80% of the world's vanilla. Due to a series of factors, including climate change and market liberalization, these farmers are experiencing extreme fluctuations in the value of their crop. This podcast explores the causes of those fluctuations and the strange and surprising impacts the boom and bust cycle has on the people of northeastern Madagascar. This piece was produced by Kyle Richmond-Crosset, Serena Sung-Clarke, Shiloh Sumanthiran, and Juliane Ding.
The photo above was taken by Finbarr O'Reilly. Selected music was obtained through the Free Music Archive.
Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees have flooded out of Myanmar, escaping from military violence. Escaping from Myanmar in itself is a harrowing journey, but many refugees continue to find adversity in the camps and cities where they end up. In continuation from the first part of this series, we speak to a PBS reporter, a United Nations advisor, and the director of a refugee rights organization. With their help, we try to understand the journey faced by Rohingya refugees, from fleeing their homes to trying to resettle in a new one. This piece was produced by Serena Sung-Clarke, Jasmine Rashid, Jia Chern Teoh, and Katherine Kwok.
The background music in this episode was produced by Podington Bear from the Free Music Archive.
As part of a project connecting to Professor of Political Science Emily Paddon-Rhoads’ class on the Politics of Sub-Saharan Africa, several Swatties examine the role of music in Ugandan politics. Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has been in power for three decades and has pushed the presidential age limit. In this troubling context, musicians take varying degrees of political engagement but are all restricted in their methods of expression by the government. How have artists responded? Some completely avoid politics; some see artistic expression as a mode of social activism. A number of musicians sang for Museveni’s campaign. Others ran for office to create change from within the system. Ugandan pop music reflects the disturbing trends of Ugandan politics. This week on War News Radio, our reporters Ozsu Risvanoglu, Lea Slaugh, and Sally Wang, with the help of Lisa Kato and Seimi Park, will take you on a journey with the music of parliamentary musician Bobi Wine (also known as “The King of Ghetto”), top musician Eddy Kenzo, and human rights activist/musician Bana Mutibwa.
On September 25th, the semi-autonomous Kurds of Northern Iraq called a referendum for independence. Since ISIS was pushed from the country, the Iraqi Kurds’ President Masoud Barzani thought the timing was right. In response, on October 16th, Iraqi federal security forces seized disputed territory occupied by the Iraqi Kurds, quashing any hopes of Kurdish independence. Tensions remain high as the Baghdad government demands a renunciation of the referendum; productive negotiations and the establishment of a cease-fire have yet to be accomplished. This week on War News Radio, our reporters Jake Stattel and Nick Mayo offer a brief historical background on this conflict and the role of the Kurds in Iraq. Tune in to catch up on the breaking story in Iraq, as it continues to unfold.
In August, clashes between the Burmese government and the ethnic minority Rohingya intensified, leaving casualties and many Rohingya people vulnerable to violence. Since then, over 500,000 Rohingya have fled their home in Myanmar’s Rakhine State. The media and foreign workers have been barred from entering Rakhine, but stories of ethnic cleansing and plunder have emerged. Who, exactly, are the Rohingya and how did this happen? To understand the current crisis, we have to go back in time… This week on War News Radio, our reporters Serena Sung-Clarke and Shiloh Sumanthiran have spoken with experts to understand the Rohingya's history in Myanmar. Tune in to find out more.
The background music in this episode was produced by Ian Sutherland on the Free Music Archive.
In the last episode of When Things Fall Apart, we examined the issue of educational inequity and the wave of student protests that took place in post-Apartheid South Africa. This week, we explore Equal Education, a movement that seeks to develop a standard for basic education across South Africa. We speak to Ntuthuzo Ndzomo, the Deputy General Secretary of Equal Education about the fundamental challenges to the provision and implementation of an equal basic education standard across the country. We also look at the role of media activism and its importance in a fragile environment. Produced by Meagan Currie, Shua-Kym McLean, Ziyana Popat, and Bobby Zipp, with the help of Katherine Kwok.
As part of a project connecting to Professor of Political Science Emily Paddon-Rhoads’ class on the Politics of Sub-Saharan Africa, several Swatties examine the recent wave of student protests fighting against continued educational inequity that haunts post-Apartheid South Africa. We speak to four alumni of the University of Cape Town who were each affected by the #RhodesMustFall and #FeesMustFall movements of 2015 and 2016. We learn more about the Equal Education movement that has developed to promote equitable basic education for young learners across the country, and examine the role of media activism in a changing world.
This week on War News Radio, part three of "Narrow Passages," War News Radio's podcast series covering the details of the resettlement process for refugees from the Syrian war. Previous episodes looked at the big picture of resettlement as a whole process. Reporters Jake Stattel, Matthew Chaffinch, and George Menz spoke with officials from Allentown, PA, a major hub for resettlement, to understand how resettlement actually works in an American city. Take a listen!
In the last segment of Narrow Passages, we looked at the broad problems with U.S. and international refugee resettlement institutions as a whole. This episode, we will narrow in on more specific challenges refugees face along the way. We especially want to examine the many ways that opportunities for resettlement are unequally distributed, from start to finish.
This past September, tens of millions of Indian workers staged a one-day general strike to protest Prime Minister Narendra Modi's economic policies. It was the biggest work stoppage in human history. Reporters Aru Shiney-Ajay and Will Marchese recap the strike and further interview Indian labor organizers and scholars.