Code Switch What's CODE SWITCH? It's the fearless conversations about race that you've been waiting for. Hosted by journalists of color, our podcast tackles the subject of race with empathy and humor. We explore how race affects every part of society — from politics and pop culture to history, food and everything in between. This podcast makes all of us part of the conversation — because we're all part of the story. Code Switch was named Apple Podcasts' first-ever Show of the Year in 2020.
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NPR

Code Switch

From NPR

What's CODE SWITCH? It's the fearless conversations about race that you've been waiting for. Hosted by journalists of color, our podcast tackles the subject of race with empathy and humor. We explore how race affects every part of society — from politics and pop culture to history, food and everything in between. This podcast makes all of us part of the conversation — because we're all part of the story. Code Switch was named Apple Podcasts' first-ever Show of the Year in 2020.

Most Recent Episodes

An artistic portrayal of the changing demographics of the United States. LA Johnson/NPR hide caption

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LA Johnson/NPR

Painting By Numbers

The 2020 census data is finally here! At first glance, it paints a surprising portrait of a changing United States: The number of people who identify as white and no other race is smaller; the share of multiracial people has shot up; and the country's second-largest racial group is... "some other race." But resident census-expert Hansi Lo Wang told us that when you start to unpack the data, you quickly find that those numbers don't tell the whole story.

Painting By Numbers

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A young Native American woman sits in a museum display case alongside artifacts and human remains. Gabriella Trujillo for NPR hide caption

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Gabriella Trujillo for NPR

Skeletons In The Closet

In a small suburb of Washington, D.C., a non-descript beige building houses thousands of Native human remains. The remains are currently in the possession of the Smithsonian Institution. But for the past decade, the Seminole Tribe of Florida has been fighting to get some of them back to Florida to be buried. The controversy over who should decide the fate of these remains has raised questions about identity, history, and the nature of archaeology.

Skeletons In The Closet

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The evolution of a nickname for a certain type of white woman. Connie Hanzhang Jin/NPR hide caption

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Connie Hanzhang Jin/NPR

The Once And Future 'Karen'

If you've been paying attention to the news over the past couple years, you know what a so-called 'Karen' is: a white woman who uses her race and gender to wield power over someone more vulnerable. But long before most people became familiar with the term Karen, POCs have been calling out Karen-esque behavior.

The Once And Future 'Karen'

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LA Johnson/NPR

The Rise Of The BBL

Black women have always faced immense pressure to make their bodies look a certain way. But if done the "wrong way," achieving that idealized figure can lead to just as much scrutiny and critique. So today, we're talking about the cosmetic procedure known as a Brazilian Butt Lift, and what its rise in popularity illustrates about the type of bodies that do and don't get valued.

The Rise Of The BBL

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Kacen Callender, author of middle and young adult novels, including Felix Ever After and Hurricane Child. Ashley Cain hide caption

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Ashley Cain

The Dramatic Life Of The American Teenager

Kacen Callender started out as a kid in St. Thomas writing fan fiction. Today, they are the author of multiple middle grade and young adult novels full of empathy, learning, and a healthy dose of high school drama.

The Dramatic Life Of The American Teenager

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Chelsea Beck/NPR

Who You Calling 'Hispanic'?

But seriously, who? Because while it is Hispanic Heritage Month, the notion of a multiracial, multinational, pan-ethnic identity called "Hispanic" is a relatively recent — and somewhat haphazard invention — in the United States. So on this episode, we're digging into how the term got created and why it continues to both unite and bewilder.

Who You Calling 'Hispanic'?

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Isabel Seliger for NPR

The Making And Remaking Of Afghanistan

For two decades, many Americans have seen Afghanistan depicted primarily through the lens of war. But that's not the full story — not even close. Afghanistan has a long, rich, complex history and culture. A lot of it flies in the face of the images those of us in the U.S. are exposed to. So this week, our friends at Throughline are helping us understand the fuller story.

The Making And Remaking Of Afghanistan

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Photo illustration by LA Johnson/NPR

The Lost Summer

Twenty years ago, during the dog days of summer , a fledgling journalist named Shereen Marisol Meraji — maybe you've heard of her? — headed to Durban, South Africa. Her mission: to report on a meeting of thousands of organizers and ambassadors gathered at a global conference on racism. The conference filled Shereen with hope and optimism — all of which would soon be wiped away.

The Lost Summer

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LA Johnson/NPR

The Folk Devil Made Me Do It

What moral panics reveal about the ongoing freakout over critical race theory in schools.

The Folk Devil Made Me Do It

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Seeing Ghosts, a memoir by Kat Chow. Grand Central Publishing hide caption

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Grand Central Publishing

'Seeing Ghosts' Across Generations

Kat Chow was 13 when her mother died, and with that loss came profound and lasting questions about identity, family and history. In her memoir, Seeing Ghosts, the author and former Code Switch reporter explores how her mother's death has haunted her through the years, in ways that are profound, tragic and, sometimes, darkly hilarious.

'Seeing Ghosts' Across Generations

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