state-of-the-reunion
The public radio show hosted by Al Letson telling the story of America, one community at a time.

Find out more at stateofthereunion.com.

Interior Alaska: Frontier Community

Interior Alaska can be a forbidding place. The region is largely wilderness, covered with expansive stretches of tundra and towering…

The Sorting of America

The U.S. has been a country shaped by migration, dating back to the days of the pioneers making their way…
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Contested

Host Al Letson and guest producer John Biewen (of the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University) present a collection…

Hawai’i: The Legacy of Sugar

For many Americans, Hawai’i is a tropical playground, the place of surf, sun and dream vacations. Behind the tourist façade,…
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Leadership from the Bottom Up

Usually during Black History month, we remember civil rights icons and reflect on their legacy. But over the past couple…
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Re:Defining Black History

During a month selected to celebrate “history,” we certainly are treated to a lot of the same familiar stories: the…
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SOTRU Short: Soteria

In the 1970s, a prominent schizophrenia researcher named Dr. Loren Mosher noticed that the standard treatment in the hospital– medication,…
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SOTRU Short: Dear Voices

A twist on SOTRU’s regular Dear City letters feature: for this special podcast, we asked Berta Britz, who has been…
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SOTRU Short: Dear Tulsa

Last summer, we visited Tulsa, Oklahoma, where a devastating racial incident in 1921 still divides the city today. That legacy…
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SOTRU Short: Move By Bike

For all you Portlandia fans out there, we hate to break it to you: the city ISN’T actually Portlandia… Except…
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The Southwestern Range

Among the most iconic landscapes in America is the Western Range, a stretch of millions of acres of land, much…
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Tulsa, OK: Reconciliation Way

Tulsa, Oklahoma sits at a crossroads of American identities. In a special episode of SOTRU, we travel to the middle…
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Portland, OR: A Tale of Two Cities

Portland is a city that some residents praise as a kind of eden: full of bike paths, independently-owned small businesses,…
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The Hospital Always Wins

Back in 2004, staff producer Laura Starecheski visited a state mental hospital in Queens, New York, called Creedmoor. She stumbled…

Tucson: Borderlands

Tucson sits in the borderlands, the desert landscape where America and Mexico meet. This place is crisscrossed by boundaries, visible…

Ozarks: Full Circle

The Ozarks have long been an isolated part of the country. Steep mountains break up the landscape into hills and…

Baltimore: Outsiders In

Baltimore is a city of many neighborhoods, of intense divides—racial, class, and otherwise– not easily overcome. It’s a city bogged…

Vermont: The Small Town State

Quaint storefronts along Main streets, covered bridges over clear streams, cows from dairy farms dotting green valleys: across the state,…

Sacramento, CA: All Hands on Deck

There’s been a lot of bad news coming out of Sacramento lately: homelessness, the foreclosure rate, unemployment, political gridlock in…

Wyoming: The New Old West

People are few and far between in Wyoming. Those that do live here prize tradition, self-reliance, and their connection to…

Oakland: The Self-Made City

Refugees, entrepreneurs, visionaries—these are the historic roots of Oakland, California. The city has long been home for people building n……

Miami: Bridging the Divide

Famous for its beaches and clubs, Miami is also the 3rd poorest city in the nation. If you own a…

Utica: City with a Warm Heart

A couple of decades ago, Utica, New York, was dying, by even its residents diagnosis: a popular bumper sticker in…

Birmingham: Long Story Short

Birmingham is a place that can’t escape its history—especially the painful parts. Almost fifty years later after the tragedies and…

Bayard Rustin – Who Is This Man?

August 28th, 1963 will forever be tied to Martin Luther King Jr.’s hallowed “I Have a Dream Speech.” This historic…

Appalachia Rising

Rural Appalachia has long been portrayed in the media as a place of victims: people at the mercy of the…

Austin, TX: Growing Pains

Unlike places that have been thrown into a state of crisis by a disaster, Austin, Texas, has been thrown into…

Los Angeles: Home, Sweet Home

Los Angeles, Lala land, often thought of as the city of movies and money and fame. But that characterization doesn’t…

Twin Cities: World Within Two Cities

It isn’t exactly Lake Wobegon anymore… Once known as the home of Midwestern Lutherans and Scandanavian farmers, the cities of…

Española: The Land Remembers

We are excited to announce the release of our Española episode: The Land Remembers. Al Letson and team explore this…

New Orleans, LA – The Big Easy

Listen to the episode and check out our video documentary, podcasts, images and articles on New Orleans! If you’ve listened…