Grapple From small towns to big cities — Grapple gives voice to people living and working in distressed communities. Through personal narratives and long-form storytelling, you hear conversations that tell the story of America's profound economic and social changes — including how distressed communities have changed over time, what they're grappling with today, and how they're redefining themselves.
Grapple

Grapple

From WHYY

From small towns to big cities — Grapple gives voice to people living and working in distressed communities. Through personal narratives and long-form storytelling, you hear conversations that tell the story of America's profound economic and social changes — including how distressed communities have changed over time, what they're grappling with today, and how they're redefining themselves.

Most Recent Episodes

Episode 18: Coal Miners, No Relic of the Past

Pennsylvania is the nation's fifth largest coal producer. Counties in the western, central, and even eastern parts of the state are home to coal mines. But far less coal comes out of the ground than it used to. On this episode, we'll head to southwestern Pennsylvania where coal mining is a strong part of the area's identity, and find out what some miners there are grappling with. We'll hear from our reporter Margaret J. Krauss about a mine rescue team, a retired coal miner worried about his future, and a former miner who had to find new work.

Episode 17: Grappling with Racial Tension Part 2

In case you missed Part 1, make sure to go back and listen to it first before playing this episode. On Part 2, we'll try to understand racial tension in York, Pennsylvania, and explore how the area is unique in some ways – but also reflective of other places. We'll hear a range of perspectives, including from: a white nationalist group, a retired investigator for the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, and researchers who've looked into York's civil rights history.

Episode 16: Grappling with Racial Tension Part 1

In Pennsylvania's York County, which borders the Mason-Dixon line, racial tension is nothing new. While some isolated incidents took place around the time of the 2016 election, the area has experienced a long history of problems around race relations. On this episode, we'll hear how one school in the city of York is trying to deal with racial tension; what the area went through during the tumultuous 1960s; and how a hip-hop artist and a local mayor are trying to raise awareness around the issue.

Episode 15: What happens when a public school district is underfunded?

Erie, Pennsylvania has public schools that have been underfunded for years. And today, the school district is in a dire situation. Erie's story raises broader questions about education equality, and to what extent kids can be successful when they go to schools with limited resources. In this episode, you'll hear from a range of people — including parents, teachers, students, and school officials — about what the impact has been. The post Episode 15: What happens when a public school district is underfunded? appeared first on WHYY.

Episode 14: Immigration, The Rust Belt and the Rise of Donald Trump

On this episode of Grapple, we'll hear a range of personal stories that speak to some of the intense and passionate feelings around immigration. First, we'll bring you stories from the northeastern Pennsylvania city of Hazleton, which made news a decade ago for trying to crack down on unauthorized immigrants. We'll revisit the city's history and hear from two longtime residents who feel immigrants have taken over their hometown. Then, we'll tell you an intriguing economic story that traces some of the intense feelings around immigration to the decline of the Rust Belt and rise of Donald Trump. Lastly, we'll hear the stories of two undocumented chefs working in Philadelphia and how they feel stuck. The post Episode 14: Immigration, The Rust Belt and the Rise of Donald Trump appeared first on WHYY.

Preview of New Grapple Episodes Coming Out April 12

Grapple is back with a new round of episodes! We'll be covering a range of hot-button issues from immigration reform to public school funding and race relations. Listen to our preview and get ready for Episode 14 coming out on April 12th. The post Preview of New Grapple Episodes Coming Out April 12 appeared first on WHYY.

Bonus Episode: The Music Behind Grapple

If you love the music on Grapple as much as we do, then don't miss this bonus episode with musicians Tony Trov and Mike Vivas in their recording studio! They talk about how they composed the music for Grapple, who some of their musical influences are, and the sheer fun they had working on this project, including coming up with ridiculous song titles like Scrapple in the Night. Host Naomi Starobin is also joined by our executive producer Stephanie Marudas to talk about the choices she made around scoring the podcast. Check out more episodes of Grapple. The post Bonus Episode: The Music Behind Grapple appeared first on WHYY.

Episode 12: Breaking Down a Changing America with Maria Hinojosa and Dan Hopkins

On this episode of Grapple, we'll talk about immigration and our country's changing demographics with journalist Maria Hinojosa. We'll also hear from University of Pennsylvania political scientist Dan Hopkins about what contributes to the rise of anti-immigration politics and how it played out in the 2016 presidential election.

Episode 12: Breaking Down a Changing America with Maria Hinojosa and Dan Hopkins

Episode 11: Millbourne, Getting Back on Track

On this episode of Grapple, we head to a tiny inner-ring suburb outside of Philadelphia called Millbourne. It's home to around 1,200 people. You'll hear about how the closure of a Sears store in 1988 rocked this borough. Today, nearly three decades later, officials are grappling with what to do about the old Sears lot that's still vacant. At the same time, immigrants primarily from Southeast Asia have increasingly moved into Millbourne over the years because of its affordable housing and convenient public transportation. Check out the photo essay: http://bit.ly/2fv7eve

Episode 10: Breaking Down Gentrification with Jackelyn Hwang

Gentrification is a controversial issue playing out in cities across America. What happens when wealthier residents begin to move into a lower-income neighborhood? Who gets to stay, and who doesn't? In episode 09 of Grapple, we heard about how the Pittsburgh neighborhood of Hazelwood is on the cusp of change. Residents there are hopeful about a major new development and the potential job opportunities; but they're also concerned the development could push them out of their community. On this episode, Jackelyn Hwang joins us to discuss some of the latest trends and research around gentrification. Hwang is a postdoctoral research fellow at Princeton University, and will join the faculty of Stanford University as an assistant professor of sociology in the fall of 2017.

Back To Top