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African-American Intellectuals, Southern Democrats, and LaCroix Sparkling Water

Past Present Episode 113

In this episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil discuss a feud between African-American intellectuals Cornel West and Ta-Nehisi Coates, the electoral prospects for southern Democrats, and why LaCroix Sparkling Water has become an obsession.

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“Cat Person,” Black Maternal Mortality, and Elf on the Shelf

Past Present Episode 112

In this week’s episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia debate the viral New Yorker short story “Cat Person”, the disproportionately high maternal death rate among black women, and the Elf on the Shelf phenomenon. 

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Etiquette Books, a Royal Engagement, and National Monuments

Past Present Episode 111

In this episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil debate the resurgence of etiquette books, the announcement of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal engagement, and President Trump’s decision to limit the size of two national monuments.

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Time Inc., Massage Envy, and Net Neutrality

Past Present Episode 110

In this episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki debate the purchase of Time Inc. by the Meredith Corporation, sexual assault claims at a chain of massage spas, and net neutrality.

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Bill Clinton, the NYC Subway, and GOP’s Tax Plan

Past Present Episode 109

In this episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia debate the recent reckoning with Bill Clinton’s legacy, the state of the New York City subway, and the new tax reform measure.

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Liz Smith, Interracial Friendships, and Roy Moore

Past Present Episode 108

In this episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate Liz Smith and the history of gossip columns, whether interracial friendships are possible, and evangelical responses to Roy Moore’s pedophilia scandal.

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Democratic Wins, Twitter, and The Snowy Day

Past Present Episode 107

In this episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia debate the Democratic wins in the recent off-year elections, the doubling of Twitter’s character limit, and the release of a postage stamp based on Ezra Jack Keats’ The Snowy Day.

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Kevin Spacey, Company Towns, and the Reformation

Past Present Episode 106

In this episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki debate Kevin Spacey’s coming out amid charges of pedophilia, the 21st century company town, and the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.

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JFK Files, Joni Mitchell, and Anxiety

Past Present Episode 105

In this episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki debate the declassification of the JFK files, Joni Mitchell, and our age of anxiety.

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Girl Scouts, #MeToo, and HIV/AIDS

Past Present Episode 104

In this episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil discuss the Girl Scouts in light of the Boy Scouts’ recent decision to admit girls, #MeToo activism, and how Michael Friedman’s recent death of HIV/AIDS helps us understand the illness in historical context.

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