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In The Moment podcast


Listen in on the latest Town Hall conversation, wherever you are! In the Moment is a weekly podcast featuring in-depth interviews curated by Town Hall’s Digital Media Manager, Jini Palmer. Senior Correspondent Steve Scher, along with a host of Seattle journalists and thought leaders, take on topics ranging from science and health, civics and culture, to the arts—and beyond! Join us, In the Moment, for expansive talks from Town Hall’s digital stage.

Listen in on the latest Town Hall conversation, wherever you are! In the Moment is a weekly podcast featuring in-depth interviews curated by Town Hall’s Digital Media Manager, Jini Palmer. Senior Correspondent Steve Scher, along with a host of Seattle journalists and thought leaders, take on topics ranging from science and health, civics and culture, to the arts—and beyond! Join us, In the Moment, for expansive talks from Town Hall’s digital stage.


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Listen in on the latest Town Hall conversation, wherever you are! In the Moment is a weekly podcast featuring in-depth interviews curated by Town Hall’s Digital Media Manager, Jini Palmer. Senior Correspondent Steve Scher, along with a host of Seattle journalists and thought leaders, take on topics ranging from science and health, civics and culture, to the arts—and beyond! Join us, In the Moment, for expansive talks from Town Hall’s digital stage.








141. Max Holleran with Marcus Harrison Green: Millennials and the Fight for Affordable Housing

It’s no secret that housing costs are climbing and income is struggling to keep up. It’s a complex problem with a lot of loud voices. One of the newest voices, however, is the YIMBY (“Yes In My Backyard”) movement. This growing number of influential activists are calling for more construction and denser cities in order to increase affordability. Max Holleran’s book, Yes to the City, offers an in-depth look at the movement and how it fits into the larger debate of how we shape where we...


140. R. Douglas Arnold with Sally James: Can Social Security Be Fixed?

Since it started, Social Security has been a cornerstone for retirement in America. But Americans are living longer and having fewer children, which means that this popular program now pays more in benefits than it collects in revenue. There’s less going into the pot than there is going out. Without reforms, 83 million Americans will face an immediate benefit cut of 20 percent in 2034, just a dozen years away. What’s more, most future retirees are not participating in employee-sponsored...


139. Leoma James with Charlie James: Stories of a Black American Woman Living in Africa

What is it like to be a young, Black, American woman traveling in Southern and Eastern Africa? In her new novel, No Blame, No Shame, No Guilt, Leoma James explores the profound experience of being surrounded by Africa’s natural beauty and vibrant culture while also realizing the harsh realities of racism and the long-term implications of colonization in Africa. Through short stories and poetry, James exposes readers to the different racial relations present within each story, allowing them...


138. Kevin G. Bethune with Beverly Aarons: How Reimagining Design Can Transform Lives and Organizations

Design is more than an aesthetically pleasing logo or banner – it has the power to solve problems in unique ways, cultivate innovation, and anchor multidisciplinary teamwork. In Reimagining Design, Kevin Bethune describes his journey as a Black professional through corporate America, revealing the power of transformative design, multidisciplinary leaps, and diversity. Bethune, who began as an engineer at Westinghouse, moved on to Nike (where he designed Air Jordans), and now works as a...


137. Alexander Monea with Edward Wolcher: How the Internet Became Straight

In today’s internet-based world, it’s easy to forget that there was a time before it was mainstream. How is it built? Who decides its content? And how has that content affected our culture? In this episode of In the Moment, author and researcher Alexander Monea takes a close look at this thing we all take for granted and argues that the internet isn’t as open source as one might think. In his new book, The Digital Closet, Monea explores how heteronormative bias is deeply embedded in the...


136. Joel Simon and Robert Mahoney with Katy Sewall: How Censorship and Lies Made the World Sicker and Less Free

As COVID-19 began to spread around the world in 2020, so did a steady stream of information — and disinformation. Running parallel to the pandemic was an “infodemic,” a digital and physical deluge of information that resulted in mass confusion and censorship. In their new book, The Infodemic, authors Joel Simon and Robert Mahoney lay bare the mechanisms of a modern brand of “censorship through noise” that moves beyond traditional means of state control (jailing critics and restricting the...


135. David M. Peña-Guzmán with Steve Scher: The Hidden World of Animal Consciousness

Have you ever watched a dog sleep? At times it doesn’t look like sleep at all with their tails thumping, paws padding at an invisible ground, and squeaks, grunts, and growls disrupting an otherwise quiet slumber. We might assume that they’re dreaming about squirrels, or a really good bone. But are they? What really goes on in the minds of animals when they sleep? Author David Peña-Guzmán brings together behavioral and neuroscientific research on animal sleep with philosophical theories of...


134. Thomas H. Pruiksma with Dr. Ruben Quesada: A New Translation of The Kural

The Tirukkuṟaḷ, or Kural, for short, is considered a masterpiece of universal philosophy, ethics, and morality. Traditionally attributed to Thiruvalluvar, also known as Valluvar, the original text has been dated from 300 BCE to 5th century CE. The classic Tamil work is one of the most cited and translated ancient texts in existence; it has been translated into over 40 Indian and non-Indian languages and has never been out of print since its first publication in 1812. In a new translation of...


133. Linda Lee with Shin Yu Pai: Meet Town Hall Seattle’s Curator-in-Residence

As Curator-in-Residence for Town Hall, Linda Lee has been working with Town Hall Seattle since October 2021 to better interpret and display our permanent art collections, as well as develop a longer-term exhibition plan including artwork from the community. In the 133rd episode of Town Hall’s In the Moment podcast, Program Director Shin Yu Pai interviews Lee about her work as Curator-in-Residence, her collaboration with Urban Artworks to put art on our walls, and exciting opportunities for...


132. Treva B. Lindsey with Leoma James: Violence, Black Women, and the Struggle for Justice

Studies clearly indicate that Black women, girls, and non-binary people face disproportionately high rates of physical and sexual violence, and face a greater risk of death by homicide than women and non-binary people of white, Latinx, and Asian/Pacific Islander descent. What forces have contributed to a legacy of violence, and is justice possible? In America, Goddam, Black feminist historian Dr. Treva B. Lindsey explores the combined force of anti-Blackness, misogyny, patriarchy, and...


131. Frank C. Keil with Halli Benasutti: Childhood and the Lifelong Love of Science

Spend any amount of time with young children, and there’s a good chance of finding yourself on the receiving end of a barrage of questions. How do clocks work? Where do fish go in winter? Why isn’t the oldest person in the world also the tallest person in the world? And on and on. But it makes sense; children are new here, relatively speaking, and are constantly trying to figure out their big, beautiful, confusing world. But where does that sense of wonder go when people become adults? In...


130. Lyric World: Lorna Dee Cervantes with Shin Yu Pai

Poet Lorna Dee Cervantes is considered one of the major voices in contemporary Chicana literature. Growing up, she was encouraged to only speak English in order to avoid racism in her California community. As a writer, her experiences as a woman of Mexican and Indigenous American descent fuel her work, which often explores loss of language, questions of identity, and dichotomies of acceptance and resistance. In this installment of Lyric World for Town Hall’s In the Moment podcast, Program...


129. Laurie Winkless with Steve Scher—Sticky: The Secret Science of Surfaces

You are surrounded by stickiness. With every step you take, air molecules cling to you and slow you down; the effect is harder to ignore in water. When you hit the road, whether powered by pedal or engine, you rely on grip to keep you safe. The Post-it note and glue in your desk drawer. The non-stick pan on your stove. The fingerprints linked to your identity. The rumbling of the Earth deep beneath your feet, and the ice that transforms waterways each winter. All of these things are...


128. Michelle Drouin with Dr. Margaret Morris: How Technology Helps and Hinders Intimacy and Connection

Are we all, quite literally, out of touch? According to behavioral scientist Michelle Drouin, millions of people worldwide are not getting the physical, emotional, and intellectual intimacy they crave. Pandemic isolation has undoubtedly played a role, but the wonders of modern technology are connecting us with more people more often than ever before. But are these connections what we long for? Drouin’s new book, Out of Touch, explores what she calls an intimacy famine and considers why...


127. Kathy Gilsinan with Steve Scher: Stories from the Front Lines of the Pandemic

Most Americans can pinpoint the moment, back in March of 2020, when COVID-19 changed everything in the United States. Lockdown measures reshaped the daily lives of millions. Work changed. School changed. The experiences of going to the grocery store, doctor’s office, or meeting up with friends changed. And let’s be honest, two years into the pandemic, our lives are still changing as we grapple with variants, shifting guidelines, and the continued loss of loved ones. It has been a long season...


126. Vanessa Chakour with Amanda Carter Gomes: How Nature Guides Us Toward Healing

When Vanessa Chakour was growing up, she experienced a series of physical traumas — chronic asthma, a car accident that fractured her back and neck, and sexual trauma. On her path to recovery, she pursued various approaches to therapeutic movement from martial arts to yoga, exploring the traditions that honor mind-body connection. Now twenty years into her journey to reconcile her daily routines with a yearning for a greater purpose, Chakour shares her learnings in her new book, Awakening...


125. Guilaine Kinouani with Anastacia-Reneé: Living While Black

Mental health professionals are in high demand now more than ever. In the U.S. alone, around a third of the population sought therapy services in 2020. But mental health practitioners aren’t immune to issues of deep structural racism and white supremacy; if they aren’t recognized and consciously dismantled, the potential for further harm to Black people persists, and mental, physical, and emotional wellness remain out of reach. Over the past 15 years, radical psychologist Guilaine Kinouani...


124. Stanley Shikuma with Jasmine Pulido—Stop Repeating History: Tsuru for Solidarity

Tsuru for Solidarity is a nonviolent, direct action project of Japanese American social justice advocates working to end detention sites and support front-line immigrant and refugee communities that are being targeted by racist, inhumane immigration policies. In the 124th episode of Town Hall’s In the Moment podcast, Jasmine Pulido interviews writer and community activist Stanley Shikuma about Tsuru for Solidarity’s work and advocacy to close all U.S. concentration camps. The release of...


123. Hilda Lloréns with Lola E. Peters: Afro-Puerto Rican Women Building Environmental Justice

Puerto Rico has faced challenge after challenge in recent years, from economic crises and political upheaval to the aftermath of two consecutive and powerful hurricanes — Irma and María — in 2017. The devastation caused by the storms was widespread, destroying the already-fragile power grid, making most roads impassable, and costing thousands of people their lives. Years later, as rebuilding continues with ongoing struggles, an often-overlooked population of Afro-Puerto Rican women are...


122. Aaron Poochigian with Steve Scher: Baudelaire’s Flowers of Evil

Les Fleurs du Mal (The Flowers of Evil), Baudelaire’s best-known and most controversial body of work, was published in 1857. The poems were non-traditional by 19th-century Parisian standards, tracing themes of death, sex, corruption, mental health, and other taboo topics that raised more than a few eyebrows. Declared an offense against public morals, a French court suppressed the publication of six of his poems, a decision that was not reversed until nearly a century later in 1949. On the...