Scene on Radio is a two-time Peabody-nominated podcast that dares to ask big, hard questions about who we are—really—and how we got this way. Previous series include Seeing White (Season 2), looking at the roots and meaning of white supremacy; MEN (Season 3), on patriarchy and its history; The Land That Never Has Been Yet (Season 4), exploring the not-so-accidental failings of democracy in the U.S.; and The Repair (Season 5), on the climate crisis: Where did we go so wrong in our relationship with the rest of the natural world, and who's "we"? Produced and hosted by John Biewen, Scene on Radio comes from the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University (CDS) and is distributed by PRX.
The Great Depression presented a crisis not only for the U.S. economy, but for American democracy. President Franklin Roosevelt wanted to save the nation’s system of government, and its economic system, while reforming both. What did the New Deal achieve, and not achieve?
Reported and produced by John Biewen, with series collaborator Chenjerai Kumanyika. Interviews with Eric Rauchway and Cybelle Fox. The series editor is Loretta Williams.
Music by Algiers, John Erik Kaada, Eric Neveux, and Lucas Biewen. Music consulting and production help from Joe Augustine of Narrative Music.
Photo: Men fighting during a strike at the Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan, 1937. Image courtesy of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum.
As mentioned in the episode, an article by public historian Larry DeWitt examining the widespread assertion that the exclusion of some occupations from the original Social Security old-age pension program was insisted on by southern segregationists: https://www.ssa.gov/policy/docs/ssb/v70n4/v70n4p49.html