A stark two-part radio series that captured the impact of gun violence on the students and staff of one Chicago high school
In almost cinematic fashion, these two consecutive radio stories from This American Life brought audiences inside a school on Chicago’s south side that lost eight students to gun violence in the previous academic year. Three reporters spent five months following students, staff and families with remarkable access as they struggled to cope with the trauma and the aftermath of the loss. Located in one of Chicago’s most violent neighborhoods, the reporters’ ground-level observations of Harper High were truly immersive, and intercut with lively use of sound. These elements offered valuable insights into gang geography, high school culture, public health, and resilience. The extreme efforts and painful limitations of adult leadership came through, as did the violence that, as one participant said, is like the water the students swim in at Harper High.
Julie Snyder, producer and editor; Ira Glass, executive Producer and editor; Ben Calhoun, Alex Kotlowitz, Linda Lutton, reporters, Robyn Semien, co-producer.
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