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Emily Strasser, "Half-Life of a Secret: Reckoning with a Hidden History" (UP of Kentucky, 2023)

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Manage episode 354507204 series 2149396
Контент предоставлен Marshall Poe. Весь контент подкастов, включая эпизоды, графику и описания подкастов, загружается и предоставляется непосредственно компанией Marshall Poe или ее партнером по платформе подкастов. Если вы считаете, что кто-то использует вашу работу, защищенную авторским правом, без вашего разрешения, вы можете выполнить процедуру, описанную здесь https://ru.player.fm/legal.

In 1942, the US government began construction on a sixty-thousand-acre planned community named Oak Ridge in a rural area west of Knoxville, Tennessee. Unmarked on regional maps, Oak Ridge attracted more than seventy thousand people eager for high-paying wartime jobs. Among them was author Emily Strasser's grandfather George, a chemist. All employees—from scientists to secretaries, from military personnel to construction workers—were restricted by the tightest security. They were provided only the minimum information necessary to perform their jobs.

It wasn't until three years later that the citizens of Oak Ridge, and the rest of the world, learned the true purpose of the local industry. Oak Ridge was one of three secret cities constructed by the Manhattan Project for the express purpose of developing the first atomic bomb, which devastated Hiroshima on August 6, 1945.

In Half-Life of a Secret: Reckoning with a Hidden History (UP of Kentucky, 2023), Emily Strasser exposes the toxic legacy—political, environmental, and personal—that forever polluted her family, a community, the nation, and the world. Sifting through archives and family memories, and traveling to the deserts of Nevada and the living rooms of Hiroshima, she grapples with the far-reaching ramifications of her grandfather's work. She learns that during the three decades he spent building nuclear weapons, George suffered from increasingly debilitating mental illness. Returning to Oak Ridge, Strasser confronts the widespread contamination resulting from nuclear weapons production and the government's disregard for its impact on the environment and public health. With brilliant insight, she reveals the intersections between the culture of secrecy in her family and the institutionalized secrecy within the nuclear industry, which persists, with grave consequences, to this day.

Emily Strasser: Emily Strasser is a writer based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She received her MFA in nonfiction from the University of Minnesota. Her work has appeared in Catapult, Ploughshares, Guernica, Colorado Review, The Bitter Southerner, The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, Gulf Coast, and Tricycle, among others, and she was the presenter of the BBC podcast “The Bomb.” Her essays have been named notable in Best American Essays 2016 and 2017 and nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She was a winner of the 2015 Ploughshares Emerging Writer’s Contest, a 2016 AWP Intro Award, a 2016 Minnesota State Arts Board Artist’s Initiative Grant, and the 2016 W.K. Rose Fellowship from Vassar College. She served as a 2018-19 Olive B. O’Connor Fellow in Creative Writing at Colgate University and a 2019 McKnight Writing Fellow.

Cody Skahan (cas12@hi.is) is a student in the MA program in Anthropology at the University of Iceland as a Leifur Eriksson Fellow. His work focuses on environmentalism in Iceland, especially the social and political implications of the youth environmentalist movement in an arctic country that has created for itself a façade of being environmentally and socially progressive. More generally, his other interests span anywhere from critical theory, psychoanalysis, anarchism, cultural studies, anime, and applying theory through praxis. Cody has a blog where he is trying to write more rather than just only read and talk about books.

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iconПоделиться
 
Manage episode 354507204 series 2149396
Контент предоставлен Marshall Poe. Весь контент подкастов, включая эпизоды, графику и описания подкастов, загружается и предоставляется непосредственно компанией Marshall Poe или ее партнером по платформе подкастов. Если вы считаете, что кто-то использует вашу работу, защищенную авторским правом, без вашего разрешения, вы можете выполнить процедуру, описанную здесь https://ru.player.fm/legal.

In 1942, the US government began construction on a sixty-thousand-acre planned community named Oak Ridge in a rural area west of Knoxville, Tennessee. Unmarked on regional maps, Oak Ridge attracted more than seventy thousand people eager for high-paying wartime jobs. Among them was author Emily Strasser's grandfather George, a chemist. All employees—from scientists to secretaries, from military personnel to construction workers—were restricted by the tightest security. They were provided only the minimum information necessary to perform their jobs.

It wasn't until three years later that the citizens of Oak Ridge, and the rest of the world, learned the true purpose of the local industry. Oak Ridge was one of three secret cities constructed by the Manhattan Project for the express purpose of developing the first atomic bomb, which devastated Hiroshima on August 6, 1945.

In Half-Life of a Secret: Reckoning with a Hidden History (UP of Kentucky, 2023), Emily Strasser exposes the toxic legacy—political, environmental, and personal—that forever polluted her family, a community, the nation, and the world. Sifting through archives and family memories, and traveling to the deserts of Nevada and the living rooms of Hiroshima, she grapples with the far-reaching ramifications of her grandfather's work. She learns that during the three decades he spent building nuclear weapons, George suffered from increasingly debilitating mental illness. Returning to Oak Ridge, Strasser confronts the widespread contamination resulting from nuclear weapons production and the government's disregard for its impact on the environment and public health. With brilliant insight, she reveals the intersections between the culture of secrecy in her family and the institutionalized secrecy within the nuclear industry, which persists, with grave consequences, to this day.

Emily Strasser: Emily Strasser is a writer based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She received her MFA in nonfiction from the University of Minnesota. Her work has appeared in Catapult, Ploughshares, Guernica, Colorado Review, The Bitter Southerner, The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, Gulf Coast, and Tricycle, among others, and she was the presenter of the BBC podcast “The Bomb.” Her essays have been named notable in Best American Essays 2016 and 2017 and nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She was a winner of the 2015 Ploughshares Emerging Writer’s Contest, a 2016 AWP Intro Award, a 2016 Minnesota State Arts Board Artist’s Initiative Grant, and the 2016 W.K. Rose Fellowship from Vassar College. She served as a 2018-19 Olive B. O’Connor Fellow in Creative Writing at Colgate University and a 2019 McKnight Writing Fellow.

Cody Skahan (cas12@hi.is) is a student in the MA program in Anthropology at the University of Iceland as a Leifur Eriksson Fellow. His work focuses on environmentalism in Iceland, especially the social and political implications of the youth environmentalist movement in an arctic country that has created for itself a façade of being environmentally and socially progressive. More generally, his other interests span anywhere from critical theory, psychoanalysis, anarchism, cultural studies, anime, and applying theory through praxis. Cody has a blog where he is trying to write more rather than just only read and talk about books.

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/military-history

  continue reading

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