The Culture Gabfest discuss This American Life, Serial, S-Town, and skepticism of narrative nonfiction.

The Tropes and Gimmicks That Make Narrative Podcasts So Suspiciously Seductive

The Tropes and Gimmicks That Make Narrative Podcasts So Suspiciously Seductive

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July 6 2017 3:10 PM
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The Tropes and Gimmicks That Make Narrative Podcasts So Suspiciously Seductive

The Culture Gabfest unpacks why so many podcasts sound like This American Life.

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Woman in headphones listening music in nature and at the mountain (intentional pale color style)

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In the Slate Plus bonus segment of Thursday’s edition of the Culture Gabfest, Dana, Stephen, and Julia have mixed feelings about This American Life–style audio storytelling.

Julia wants to dig deeper into Stephen’s skepticism toward the narrative style that has come to dominate public radio and podcasting—what is it about This American Life, Serial and S-Town’s seductive, engaging storytelling that makes him so suspicious? Is there too much temptation to mold or massage narrative nonfiction into a good story?

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