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It's Been a Minute

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Each week, It's Been a Minute features people in the culture who deserve your attention. Plus weekly wraps of the news with journalists in the know. Join us to make sense of the world through conversation. If you can't get enough, try It's Been a Minute Plus. Your subscription supports the show and unlocks a sponsor-free feed. Learn more at plus.npr.org/itsbeenaminute

Each week, It's Been a Minute features people in the culture who deserve your attention. Plus weekly wraps of the news with journalists in the know. Join us to make sense of the world through conversation. If you can't get enough, try It's Been a Minute Plus. Your subscription supports the show and unlocks a sponsor-free feed. Learn more at plus.npr.org/itsbeenaminute

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NPR

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Each week, It's Been a Minute features people in the culture who deserve your attention. Plus weekly wraps of the news with journalists in the know. Join us to make sense of the world through conversation. If you can't get enough, try It's Been a Minute Plus. Your subscription supports the show and unlocks a sponsor-free feed. Learn more at plus.npr.org/itsbeenaminute

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English


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Episodes

Russia's long played with U.S. racial politics. Brittney Griner is the latest example

8/12/2022
What does Brittney Griner's hypervisibility as a tall, queer, Black woman have to do with her 9-year sentence in a Russian prison? A lot, according to historian Kimberly St. Julian-Varnon, who studies race and Blackness in Russia. She chats with guest host Tracie Hunte about what Griner's detainment means for Black queer folks who travel and the antagonism surrounding the case. Then, Tracie talks about the big moment Nigerian pop culture is having in the U.S. She is joined by Nigerian...

Duration:00:35:51

In 'Industry,' Myha'la Herrold makes herself undeniable

8/9/2022
In HBO's Industry, Myha'la Herrold plays Harper, a ruthless young trading floor analyst working for a bank in London. We've seen characters like her before — think of the power-obsessed personalities in shows like Billions and Succession. The big difference? The stakes are much higher for a young Black woman like Harper. Myha'la talks to guest host Tracie Hunte about the new season of Industry, bringing her own context to a complex, morally ambiguous character and why she credits her mom...

Duration:00:19:19

All things comedy: HBO's 'Rap Sh!t,' plus, what's going on with late-night TV?

8/5/2022
What do we expect from women rappers? Guest host Tracie Hunte and music and culture journalist Naima Cochrane discuss HBO's Rap Sh!t — and how it portrays women in hip hop walking the line between sexuality and respectability. Then, Tracie talks to NPR TV critic Eric Deggans about recent shake-ups in late-night TV. They look at the genre's influence on comedy and what the future looks like for women and comedians of color. Plus, we play Who Said That! Tracie brings on her WNYC colleagues...

Duration:00:37:27

Why protecting the 'viral underclass' can keep us all healthy

8/2/2022
After years of covering HIV and AIDS, journalist Steven Thrasher knew that the hardest hit communities were almost always the poorest and most marginalized ones. Then COVID-19 struck, and he saw that the same groups of people were suffering the most. In his new book The Viral Underclass: The Human Toll When Inequality and Disease Collide, Thrasher explores how this pattern plays out in communities around the world. Guest host Tracie Hunte talks to him about the ways that systemic oppression...

Duration:00:17:33

Bow down, Queen Bey's 'Renaissance' era has finally arrived

7/29/2022
Beyoncé's new album is here! Guest host Anna Sale chats with Dan Runcie, founder of the hip hop site Trapital, and Joey Guerra, music critic for the Houston Chronicle. They talk about Renaissance, what Beyoncé means to us and how this album meets the moment. Also, It's Been a Minute producer Liam McBain talks to culture writer Crispin Long about their shared obsession with reality dating shows. They discuss how these shows lay bare our society's obsession with marriage, and why reality...

Duration:00:34:40

Presenting 'The Limits': Colman Domingo on success, grief and powerful characters

7/26/2022
In this episode from our friends at The Limits with Jay Williams, host Jay Williams speaks with Colman Domingo, the ultimate character actor, known for stealing scenes in films like Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Selma and If Beale Street Could Talk. He embodies every character he takes on, most recently earning an Emmy nod for his role as father-figure Ali to Zendaya's Rue on HBO's Euphoria. You can follow us on Twitter @NPRItsBeenAMin and email us at ibam@npr.org.

Duration:00:43:52

'Nope' and the history of Black horror; plus when to say 'no' to the news

7/22/2022
These days, following the news can be utterly demoralizing. How do we deal? Guest host Anna Sale talks to Amanda Ripley, journalist and anchor of the Slate podcast How To!, about strategies for staying informed without stressing out (too much). Then, Anna chats with author, educator and producer Tananarive Due about the history of the Black horror genre ahead of the release of Jordan Peele's Nope. They talk about how horror can be a way to process trauma, how marginalized creators can — but...

Duration:00:48:02

Presenting 'Death, Sex & Money': From manager to labor activist

7/19/2022
From guest host Anna Sale's other podcast Death, Sex & Money, we bring you this story about Mary Gundel, whose journey from manager to labor activist starts out on TikTok, during a bad day at work, and ends with her losing her job —but finding her power. You can follow us on Twitter @NPRItsBeenAMin and email us at ibam@npr.org.

Duration:00:34:30

988 is the new mental health hotline. Can it change how we respond to crisis?

7/14/2022
Starting July 16, anyone in the US experiencing emotional distress or a mental health crisis can call the phone number 988 and reach a crisis counselor. Guest host Anna Sale talks to Hannah Wesolowski, chief advocacy officer of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, about bringing local call centers into this network, what challenges they're facing and how it will reshape how we view mental health resourcing. Then Anna talks to Pop Culture Happy Hour host Aisha Harris about why so many...

Duration:00:39:46

Writer Erika L. Sánchez on mental health, Lisa Simpson and 'Crying in the Bathroom'

7/12/2022
In 2017, author Erika L. Sánchez was making her dreams come true, her young adult novel I'm Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter earning critical acclaim. But even as she rose to fame, Sánchez found herself struggling with her mental health. Her new memoir, Crying in the Bathroom, captures the tension between her public success and her private suffering — and more. Sánchez talks with guest host Anna Sale about sharing some of her darkest moments with readers, caring for her mental health and...

Duration:00:24:59

Hoochie daddy shorts give more than a 'lil leg; plus let's get 'Seen, Heard and Paid'

7/8/2022
They're short, sexy and on-trend: Hoochie daddy shorts are all the rage for cisgender straight men this summer. And this week, they are the center of a conversation between guest host Anna Sale and writer and poet Danez Smith about sex, gender and freedom. What do higher hemlines on men reveal about the gender anxiety rippling through America today? Also, Anna speaks with Wired editor Alan Henry about his new book Seen, Heard, and Paid: The New Work Rules for the Marginalized. They discuss...

Duration:00:31:19

'X' explores pleasure and pain in a dystopic world

7/5/2022
How do freedom and rights intersect with sex, pleasure and the self? It's a question the U.S. is facing in the wake of the Supreme Court's recent decision to overturn Roe v. Wade — and a central theme in writer Davey Davis's new novel. In X, Davis relocates the conflict over these ideas from courts and abortion clinics to queer clubs and BDSM dungeons in a more dystopic version of our present. In this episode, guest host Anna Sale talks to Davis about why sadism is romantic, how bureaucracy...

Duration:00:25:39

Staying grounded after Roe v. Wade; plus let's talk about fat liberation

7/1/2022
The Supreme Court gutted abortion rights by overturning Roe v. Wade. For those who have been in the trenches of the reproductive justice movement — people who saw this coming — is there anything left to feel hopeful about? Guest host B.A. Parker chats with four young organizers about their stories and their plans for the future. Plus, Parker talks with cultural critic and writer Clarkisha Kent about navigating body positivity discourse as Black women and how the movement has strayed from...

Duration:00:31:59

When parents say sorry on-screen

6/28/2022
Family conflict is a cinema staple. But recently Hollywood has come out with a slew of stories about parents and children confronting gaps in culture, generation and identity — from animated films like Encanto and Turning Red, to the recent miniseries Ms. Marvel and the indie hit Everything Everywhere All at Once. Vox entertainment critic Emily St. James calls the subgenre the "millennial parent apology fantasy." She shares with guest host B.A. Parker how the form came to be, what its limits...

Duration:00:16:41

Guess who's back in the house (music scene); plus 'Would it Kill You to Laugh'

6/24/2022
In a matter of days Beyoncé and Drake both released music that draws deeply on 90s era house music. Neither of them are queer, but the they're borrowing from a genre that has been liberating for Black & Latino queer people from the 70s to today. In this episode our June guest host B.A. Parker welcomes Back Issue's co-host Josh Gwynn to chat about house music's roots and the genre's resurgence. Also, comedians Kate Berlant & John Early talk about their new special Would it Kill You to Laugh....

Duration:00:33:35

Fangirls rule the internet in 'Everything I Need, I Get From You'

6/21/2022
Fangirls often don't get taken seriously in pop culture. But in her new book, Everything I Need, I Get From You: How Fangirls Created the Internet as We Know It, culture reporter Kaitlyn Tiffany explores just how much fangirls have shaped online life. She talks with guest host B.A. Parker about how fans used Tumblr to transform internet culture, how being a One Direction fan enriched her own life and why fandom is more complicated than we might think. You can follow us on Twitter...

Duration:00:29:17

Why old is new again in pop music; plus 'Rutherford Falls'

6/17/2022
When singer-songwriter Kate Bush released "Running Up That Hill" in 1985, it peaked at number 30 on the Hot 100. Now it's soared into the top ten, thanks to the newest season of Stranger Things. Guest host B.A. Parker talks to Stereogum writers Rachel Brodsky and Chris Deville about why old music seems to be getting more love than new music these days — and how even new music seems retro. Plus, actor and writer Jana Schmieding on the second season of Rutherford Falls, exploring physical...

Duration:00:34:43

Joseph Han on U.S. imperialism, Korean ghosts and Guy Fieri

6/14/2022
We don't often think of Hawaii and the Korean peninsula as having any kind of shared history. But author Joseph Han disagrees — and he makes the case in his debut novel Nuclear Family. In this episode, Han and guest host B.A. Parker discuss the book and Han's experience as a Korean immigrant in Hawaii. And they unpack the long effects of U.S. imperialism and military presence in both places. Along the way, they get into ghosts, grandmas and Guy Fieri.

Duration:00:17:42

Even influencers are burning out; plus there's nothing boring about 'Normal Gossip'

6/10/2022
These days, it seems everyone wants to be an influencer. But as content creators realize that it's a demanding, often short-lived career, they're forcing us to think hard about the future of an industry that's still on the rise. Guest host B.A. Parker speaks with Rebecca Jennings, senior correspondent at Vox, who reported on how influencer burnout is a microcosm of our changing relationship with work.

Duration:00:35:28

Joel Kim Booster on making a queer, Asian American 'Pride and Prejudice'

6/7/2022
The first time Joel Kim Booster vacationed on New York's Fire Island with his friend, comedian Bowen Yang, he brought with him Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice as a beach read. Over the years, he'd often joke with friends about making a gay version of the novel. Today Booster is the writer and star of Hulu's Fire Island, a queer, Asian romcom based on Austen's classic, set in the titular gay vacation spot. Booster talks with guest host Elise Hu about how the film honors his queer...

Duration:00:23:04