STATE OF THE HUMAN

State of the Human, the radio show of the Stanford Storytelling Project, shares stories that deepen our understanding of single, common human experiences—belonging, giving, lying, forgiveness—all drawn from the experiences and research of the Stanford community.


Naming

We name people, places, and things out of necessity, but the labels we choose take on the weight of history, culture, and identity. In this episode, we talk about the names we use, and why they matter.

Release date:12 June 2018


Survival

Sometimes you have to keep your head down to stay alive.

This is a show about playing the cello in the darkest hour, and returning to the site of the fire, and keeping your head down to stay alive. This is a show about what happens when the sun goes down, and when you get lost in the mall, and when you pick up the phone because you have nowhere left to turn.

This is a show about the terrible and the beautiful. This is a show about survival.

Producers: Jett Hayward, Bella Lazzareschi, Elisabeth Dee, Stephanie Niu, Cathy Wong, Dylan Cunningham, Hannah Nguyen, Jackson Roach, Melina Walling, Alec Glassford, Christy Hartman, Jake Warga, Sam Greenspan, and Jonah Willinghanz.

Release date: 25 April 2018


Story 1: Santa Rosa

After the Santa Rosa fires, Bella revisits her childhood home.

Producer: Bella Lazzareschi

Music: As Fast As You Can Happen, junior85

Story 2: Vanishing Vaccines

What is it like to be LGBTQ+ in a Mormon community?

Producer: Elisabeth Dee

Featuring: Kimberly Anderson, Dean Stonehocker

Music: Ambient Pad by Karma-Ron, Melancholic Haze by FoolBoyMedia, I’m Trying To Be Like Jesus by Emily Brown, Love One Another by The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Dark Water by Podington Bear, Fathomless – Ambient by Podington Bear, Calm Synthesizer, B by InspectorJ

Story 3: The Blue Time

A psychologist searches for the secret to survival in a town where the sun doesn’t rise for 50 days.

Producers: Stephanie Niu, Jett Hayward

Featuring: Kari Liebowitz and Jonas Björklund

Music: Sombra by Zé Trigueiros, Soft Euphoria by Lee Rosevere, Playmate by Podington Bear, Everybody Wants Gold and a Mermaid by Tony Higgins, Cylinder Three by Chris Zabriskie, Cylinder Nine by Chris Zabriskie, gaël by johnny_ripper

Story 4: The Misinformation Effect

Chris Coan remembers being lost in the mall, but we all have our stories.

Producer(s): Dylan Cunningham, Jett Hayward, Cathy Wong

Featuring: Dr. James Coan, Dr. Elizabeth Loftus, Chris Coan

Music: bj.b (re:construction)_ remix by ono by -ono-, An opener by Bitbasic, Stealth Elk by Bitbasic, Pattern 4 (Version 10) by Cyan341, Datalinks (Line remix) by Posthuman, c by Gallery Six, m by Gallery Six, k by Gallery Six, Upward by junior85, Action Discovery by Komiku, may by SHOMOMOSE

Archival Sound: Rewriting History, Out in the Open, CBC Radio; Archival interview with Chris Coan provided by Jim Coan

Story 5: The Jane Collective

In an era when abortion was illegal, a group of women took matters into their own hands.

Producer: Hannah Nguyen

Featuring: Jeanne Galatzer-Levy, Martha Scott, Judith Arcana

Music: Universe in the Bath by Letmeknowyouanatole, Illumination I by Letmeknowyouanatole, Choose Another Way by Letmeknowyouanatole, Weightlessness by Daniel Birch, Absolutely Sweet Marie by Bob Dylan

Archival Sound: Roe v. Wade, Oyez, 1973 CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite (1/22/73), CBS, Third Presidential Debate Highlights | Trump, Clinton on Abortion, ABC News, Speaker Ryan’s Remarks at the March for Life, Speaker Paul Ryan, House’s 20-week abortion ban heads to the Senate, Fox News

SURVIVAL BONUS: Archival Tape Compilation

The Survival episode contains a collection of found archival sounds. These pieces of tape, on the theme of survival, have themselves survived the passage of time. Preserved fragments of another time, they remind us that human beings have always been survivors. This is a standalone collection of those fragments of tape.


Speculation

What can we know about the future? And where do we look? We plan ahead by speculating. We can’t imagine not imagining the next hour, the next day, the next email. In this show we look at the nature of guessing, of predicting, and what that can tell us about the future. And the past.

Host: Yue Li

Producers:​​ ​Chris Leboa, Cameron Tenner, Yue Li, Claudia Heymach, Noelle Chow, Sam Kargilis, Risa Cromer, Sam Greenspan

Release date: 11 April 2018


Story 1: Miner Threat

Meet the last Bitcoin miners of Stanford.

Producer: Sam Kargilis

Music (from Free Music Archive): Curves, Jhhhzzr

Story 2: Vanishing Vaccines

During the 2017-2018 flu season over 60 million Americans were infected with influenza and an estimated 50,000 died. Why has there been so much sickness when a vaccine does exist? Producer Chris LeBoa investigates the process and guesswork that goes into creating the flu shot each year and what is being done to take guesswork out of future vaccines.

Producer: Chris LeBoa

Featuring: Corrie Dekkar, Julie Parsonnet, Julie Fogarty

Story 3: The Coming Storm

In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, Houstonians Yue and Claudia wonder how future storms can be predicted. And if they can be predicted, whose responsibility is it to protect Houston?

Producers: Yue Li, Claudia Heymach, Noelle Chow

Featuring: Jeff Lindner, Jim Blackburn

Music (from freesound.org): vision- ambient gamelan by that jeff carter, Ambient Drone Solfeggio by Headphaze, Cosmos by pointpark cinema, cyclone hurricane hugo by solostud

Story 4: My Dear Melville

Herman Melville’s “great American novel,” Moby Dick, has fascinated, entertained, bored, and horrified audiences for the past 150 years, but … is Moby Dick gay? Was Herman Melville caught up in a same-sex-love affair? Producer Cameron Tenner searches for answers and learns about exploring queerness in the past.

Producer: Cameron Tenner

Featuring: Mark Beauregard, Kyla Schuller

Music: Cylinder Five by Chris Zabriskie, Gentle Chase by Podington Bear, Skeptic by Podington Bear, Vanagon by Podington Bear, Little Black Cloud by Podington Bear, Waltz for an Imaginary Piano by Johnny Ripper, Lonesome by Podington Bear, Lucky Stars by Podington Bear, In My Head by Podington Bear, Sensitive by Podington Bear, Whaling Song by Paul Clayton


Caretaking

How do we take care of the past after it turns to ash? We visit with families digging through the rubble of their homes in Sonoma after the fires as they sift for memories. This episode asks how we care for people, and what to do if there’s no obvious path to healing. Along the way, we meet a midwife, some worms, and a daughter caring for her mother and herself.

Host: Claudia Heymach

Producers: Claudia Heymach, Crystal Escolero, Emma Heath, Bella Lazzareschi, Helvia Taina, Sarah Jiang, Eileen Williams, Jackson Roach, Jake Warga

Featuring: Ronnie Falcoa, Claire Mollard, Josh Weil, Roshni Thachill

Show music: “The Flight of the Lulu” by Possimiste

Release date: 7 February 2018


Story 1: Midwife Crisis

We don’t always think of caretaking in a professional terms, but for a homebirth midwife, the emotional and physical wellbeing of others is the whole job.

Producer: Emma Heath

Featuring: Ronnie Falcoa

Story 2: From the Ashes

We went to Sonoma County after the fires to help residents dig through the rubble of their homes. Along the way, we asked about what they took with them, what they wanted to take, and what they’re looking for now.

Producers: Crystal Escolero, Helvia Taina, and Claudia Heymach

Featuring: Claire Mollard and Josh Weil

Image courtesy of Jake Warga

Story 3: Depression 1, 2, 3 …

Living with mental illness means living with the mysterious and mundane. Caretakers of loved ones with depression, anxiety or psychosis must come to grips with both sides, and resist the tug of their own demons in the process. This is an ongoing story about a mom, her daughter and the everyday work of love.

Producers: Sarah Jiang and Eileen Williams

Music: “Undersea Garden” and “Love Sprouts” by Podington Bear, “Tennessee Waltz” by Patti Page

Image: “San Valentin 14” by Milan Rubio


Conversations (Immigrating, ep. 2)

Immigrating is a conversation that happens across borders, generations, and versions of oneself. Grace and Justin talk across political differences. Unknown workers who forged the Transcontinental Railroad receive a new voice. Solmaz writes poetry to orient herself in the world. And Frankie and Francisco reflect on growing up in a new place.

This is part two of a two-part series. Listen to part one.

Host: Cathy Wong

Producers:​​ ​Carissa​ ​Cirelli,​ ​Noelle​ ​Chow,​ ​Jett​ ​Hayward,​ ​An-Li​ ​Herring,​ ​Julia​ ​Ingram,​ ​Louis​ ​Lafair,​ ​Rosie LaPuma,​ ​Yue​ ​Li,​ ​Jenny​ ​March,​ ​Kate​ ​Nelson,​ ​Jackson​ ​Roach,​ ​Helvia​ ​Taina,​ ​Melina​ ​Walling,​ ​Jake​ ​Warga, Eileen​ ​Williams,​ ​Cathy​ ​Wong

Show​ ​Music:​​ ​​johnny_ripper

Release date: 29 November 2017


Story 4: Grace and Justin

Grace and Justin send each other letters.

Producers:​​ ​Cathy​ ​Wong and ​Kate​ ​Nelson

Featuring:​​ ​Justin​ ​Hsuan and ​Grace

Music: “When in the West,” “Sage the Hunter,” and “Drone Pine” by Blue Dot Sessions

Image via Flickr

Story 5: Chinese Railroad Workers

The​ ​Central​ ​Pacific​ ​Railroad​ ​was​ ​completed​ ​in​ ​1869.​ ​150​ ​years​ ​later,​ ​we’re​ ​still​ ​searching for​ ​the​ ​stories​ ​of​ ​the​ ​people​ ​who​ ​laid​ ​out​ ​the​ ​tracks.

Producer:​ ​​Yue​ ​Li

Featuring:​​ ​Hilton​ ​Obenzinger,​ ​Barre​ ​Fong,​ ​Gordon​ ​Chang

Music: “Everything Ends Here” by Johnny Ripper; “More Weather,” “Waterbourne,” and “The Summit” by Blue Dot Sessions

Image via Wikimedia

Story 6: Solmaz

Solmaz​ ​Sharif​ ​wants​ ​to​ ​have​ ​the​ ​conversation​ ​we’re​ ​avoiding.

Producers:​​ ​Jackson​ ​Roach and Jett​ ​Hayward

Featuring:​​ ​Solmaz​ ​Sharif

Music: “c” and “m” by Gallery Six; “Krankenwagen im Stau” by rui; “Upward” and “It Moves Like A 500 Year Old Process” by junior85

Image via Flickr

Story 7: Frankie and Francisco

After​ ​immigrating​ ​from​ ​Mexico,​ ​Francisco​ ​Preciado​ ​Sr.​ ​gets​ ​a​ ​job​ ​as​ ​a​ ​groundskeeper​ ​at​ ​Stanford University.​ ​When​ ​his​ ​son,​ ​Francisco​ ​Preciado​ ​Jr.,​ ​applies​ ​to​ ​Stanford,​ ​they​ ​learn​ ​together​ ​what​ ​it​ ​means to​ ​carry​ ​on​ ​a​ ​family​ ​legacy​ ​in​ ​a​ ​new​ ​country.

Producers:​​ ​Louis​ ​Lafair and​ ​Melina​ ​Walling

Featuring:​​ ​Francisco​ ​Preciado​ ​Sr.​ ​and​ ​Francisco​ ​Preciado​ ​Jr.

Music: “An opener” by Bitbasic, “motion (johnny_ripper remix)” by noah, “Selbstheilend” by rui, “Pomp and Circumstance” by Edward Elgar and Miguel Flores

Image courtesy of Francisco Preciado Jr.


Crossings (Immigrating, ep. 1)

We hear a lot about immigrants. In this episode, we hear from immigrants—not as statistics, but as individual human beings crossing borders. Oscar gets deported and tries to return home. Maddie comes to terms with her family relationships. And Nisrin enters the U.S. from Sudan after the first travel ban takes effect.

In this episode, stories of crossing. This is part one of a two part series. Listen to part two.

Host: Noelle Chow

Producers:​​ ​Carissa​ ​Cirelli,​ ​Noelle​ ​Chow,​ ​Jett​ ​Hayward,​ ​An-Li​ ​Herring,​ ​Julia​ ​Ingram,​ ​Louis​ ​Lafair,​ ​Rosie LaPuma,​ ​Yue​ ​Li,​ ​Jenny​ ​March,​ ​Kate​ ​Nelson,​ ​Jackson​ ​Roach,​ ​Helvia​ ​Taina,​ ​Melina​ ​Walling,​ ​Jake​ ​Warga, Eileen​ ​Williams,​ ​Cathy​ ​Wong

Show​ ​Music:​​ ​​johnny_ripper

Release date: 29 November 2017


Story 1: Oscar

Oscar​ ​gets​ ​deported.​ ​He’s​ ​determined​ ​to​ ​come​ ​back,​ ​no​ ​matter​ ​what.

Producers:​​ ​Kate​ ​Nelson,​ ​Carissa​ ​Cirelli,​ ​and​ ​Jackson​ ​Roach

Featuring:​​ ​Oscar

Music: “Delican’t”​ by ​Podington​ ​Bear​, “Door​ ​knock” by ​​taylorsyoung@gmail.com​​

Image via Flickr

Story 2: Maddie

Maddie​ ​searches​ ​for​ ​the​ ​formula​ ​to​ ​be​ ​an​ ​American.

Producers:​ ​​Kate​ ​Nelson,​ ​Carissa​ ​Cirelli, and Jackson Roach

Featuring:​​ ​Madeleine​ ​Han

Music: “Fater​ ​Lee”​ by Black​ ​Ant, “James​ ​p​. ​funk​ ​2″​ by ​Black​ ​Ant, “No​ ​sudden​ ​movements” by Rui, “i’m​ ​not​ ​here” by johnny_ripper, “dan1​”​ by ​junior85

Image via Pixabay

Story 3: Nisrin

On January 27, 2017, the first travel ban takes effect. And then Nisrin lands at JFK.

Producers: Helvia Taina, An-Li Herring, Eileen Williams, and Rosie La Puma

Featuring: Nisrin Elamin Abdelrahman

Music: “80’s Interlude” by Fanas; “Theme 4,” “Sleep,” “Intermission,” “In a Dream,” and “data” by johnny_ripper

Image via Wikimedia

This story was first published on Soundings.


Crashing

Sometimes, marching steadily through the steps of life—we crash right into something entirely unexpected. In one instant, the entire world changes, without even a word of warning. When a crash comes, that collision can destroy everything. But it can wake us up to what we truly need; we must decide what to raze and what to rebuild. How do humans move forward before the smoke is cleared? What happens after the crash?

Host: Eileen Williams

Producers: Eileen Williams, Claudia Heymach, Jackson Roach, Megan Calfas, Alex Cheng, Noelle Li Syn Chow, Jake Warga

Featuring: Eddie Mazon, Michael Peskin, Miles Traer, Dr. David Radler, Dan Klein, Dehan Glanz

Show music: “Darger’s strawberry” by Exteenager, “opening credits” by Johnny Ripper

Release date: 31 May 2017


Story 1: SLACing off

Dr. Michael Peskin works in the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, home of the world’s longest linear accelerator. At SLAC, researchers crash X rays and particles, and a huge variety of things together, but not for destruction or for fun—but for learning.

Producer: Claudia Heymach

Featuring: Michael Peskin

Music: Original viola by Rosie LaPuma

Image via SLAC

Story 2: Myth and Science

Miles accidentally crashed the Stanford server, but as an earth scientist there’s a lot more at risk. Myth and science have been separated in the real world, but in fantasy and fiction they dance together to tell stories.

Producer: Eileen Williams

Featuring: Miles Traer

Music: Soundtrack to “Game of Thrones”

Image via Wikimedia Commons

Story 3: Crash Cart

Dr. David Radler is a senior resident in the department of emergency medicine at Stanford University. He tells us about one particularly memorable crash, and what it taught him.

Producer: Eileen Williams

Featuring: Dr. David Radler

Music: Kai Engel

Image via Openclipart

Story 4: Car Crash

In an instant, everything can change. When Dan and Danno got in a car crash in their sophomore year at Stanford, everything did. Now they’re both back at Stanford as professors and recount the event that shook and shaped their lives (and even inspired a Lifetime Movie). Their perspective is one you might not expect in light of the tragedy that unhinged their world. Dan says today, “That’s a great approach to life—to assume that there’s something lucky to every unlucky thing that happens.”

Producers: Megan Calfas and Alex Cheng

Featuring: Dan Klein and Dehan Glanz

Music and sound: Kai Engel, David Szesztay, Podington Bear, De la Soul, The Clientele, “A Mother’s Fight for Justice”

Image via Flickr


Navigating

Ants navigate to and from food using pheromone trails; the stronger the pheromone trail, the more ants following it, like some kind of highway map. Humans use similar mapping strategies as we navigate through life, but how do we know that the paths we’re on will lead us to where we want to be? Today’s show is about navigating, with four stories and a poem about various ways that humans are moving through the world, with unique answers to these questions: How do we navigate through life without any instructions, or with instructions that might be wrong? How do we know which way to go to get whatever we’re going for? And how do we decide when to stop moving?

Host: Connie Xiao

Producers: Will Rogers, Alec Glassford, Rosie La Puma, Yue Li, Cathy Wong, Virginia Drummond, Katie Wolfteich, Aparna Verma, Jenny Han, An-Li Herring, and Connie Xiao

Featuring: Chris Leboa, Deborah Gordon, Julie Sweetkind-Singer, Glen McLaughlin, Saptarshi Majumdar, Jennifer Johnson, and Louis Lafair

Show Music: Noelle Li Syn Chow, Melina Walling, Sarah Jiang, Gillicuddy, Doctor Turtle, Podington Bear, Polyrhythmics

Image via Flickr

Release date: 17 May 2017


Story 1: California as an Island

When the Spanish explorers set out to discover the Americas, they came to find wealth and a new start. In this story, we hear about how the Spanish explorers navigated through these unfamiliar territory and how a myth turned into a reality that passed around for centuries.

Producers: Yue Li, Virginia Drummond

Featuring: Glen McLaughlin, Julie Sweetkind-Singer

Special thanks: G. Salim Mohammed, of the David Rumsey Map Center at Stanford

Music and sound: Original music by Latifah Hamzah, “Rain Stops to Play” by Ketsa, “mutanterrante remix” by toiletrolltube, additional sounds from freesound.org

Image via Wikimedia

Navigating – Story 2: In Transit

“Once you decide something, you kinda have to destroy everything else right? Your other options? You gotta let em go.” We spend an entire day at the Oakland Greyhound station and ask people where they are going. Mark Mendoza chases a cameraman. Cathy Wong learns when not to own a skeleton key. Hollie Kool talks to a Japanese pizza lover. Mimes are involved.

Producer: Cathy Wong, Hollie Kool, and Mark Mendoza

Featuring: Cathy Wong, Hollie Kool, and Mark Mendoza

Music: “Night Owl” by Broke For Free, “Freak Mode” by Fleslit, “Dollar Theatre” by Jalen Warshawsky, “Unknown Variables” by Jalen Warshawsky, “El Fuego” by Polyrhythmics, “Cold Feet” and “I’ll Miss You” and “Looking For That Moment When Time Stands Still” by Will Bangs

Image via Flickr

Navigating – Story 3: It’s not a Sap Story

Live the life of a savage adventurer. It’s a motto that Saptarshi Majumdar lives by as he travels across the globe, whether it’s from one continent to another or one coast to another. Sap’s journeys are wild and crazy, and the stories that he picks up even crazier. Why not sit back and enjoy the ride?

Producers: Aparna Verma and Jenny Han

Featuring: Saptarshi Majumdar and Aparna Verma

Music: “Hex (Instrumental)” by Forget the Whale, “We’ll Get Ourselves in TV-News” by Break the Bans

Image via Saptarshi Majumdar

Navigating – Story 4: A Speck in the Ocean

When she was 25, Jennifer Johnson sailed out of a Japanese harbor on a 27-foot boat with sights set on Hawaii. Sit in the cockpit with her as she charts her way through storms, fish colonies, and nearly capsized boats with only her partner for company, and re-experience the newness and stillness of land. “Adventure? Oh, I don’t know, adventure has too many positive connotations to say it was an adventure.”

Producers: Katie Wolfteich

Featuring: Jennifer Johnson

Music: Weaves of K

Image via Flickr

Navigating – Story 5: If There Were a Manual

“May I please have a manual for life?” Louis Lafair reads an original poem.

Producer: Alec Glassford

Featuring: Louis Lafair

Image via Flickr