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Bradford Pearson

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Latest 4 Apr 2021 | Updated Daily

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Episode 47 with Journalist, Researcher, and the Thoughtful Author of The Eagles of Heart Mountain, Bradford Pearson

The Chills at Will Podcast

Show Notes and Links to Bradford Pearson’s Work and Allusions/Texts from Episode 47 On Episode 47, Pete talks with Bradford Pearson about his writing journey, his research on the Japanese-American “internment camps” (the two talk about this fraught phrasing), and his recent engrossing, finely-drawn. and thoroughly-researched book The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration, and Resistance in World War II America. Bradford Pearson is the former features editor of Southwest: The Magazine. He has written for The New York Times, Esquire, Time, and Salon, among many other publications. He grew up in Hyde Park, New York, and now lives in Philadelphia. The Eagles of Heart Mountain is his first book and was published January 5 of this year. The book has been reviewed favorably in The Washington Post, who called the book “an absolutely stirring story.” Of the book, Publishers’ Weekly wrote, “Pearson succeeds in unearthing a feel-good story from a dark chapter in U.S. history. The result is a worthy portrait of triumph in the face of tragedy.” Buy The Eagles of Heart Mountain (Bookshop.org) Buy The Eagles of Heart Mountain (Amazon) Bradford's Article: "What Happened After My Kidnapping" from 2015, in Philadelphia City Life Obituary and descriptive article about George "Horse" Yoshinaga, the great journalist and athlete depicted in the book At about 3:20, Bradford Pearson talks about growing up in Hyde Park, NY, and his literary childhood and adolescence; he shouts out his transformative English teacher, (Mr. Briggs!) and the change in his love for literature that came with reading the great Moby Dick At about 8:10, Brad talks about George Yoshinaga, a main character in The Eagles of Heart Mountain, and his incredible journalism career At about 9:30, Brad talks about his athletic career, including his crew/rowing background At about 10:40, Brad traces his writing journey from late high school/college to his professional writing days At about 12:00, Brad talks about the origins and inspiration for The Eagles of Heart Mountain At about 13:30, Brad talks about the writers who have inspired him and continue to inspire him, including Cormac McCarthy, Denis Johnson, Valeria Luiselli, Patrick Radden Keefe, Nick Paumgarten, and Bryan Washington At about 19:00, Brad talks about how his reading experiences are different when he’s in the middle of writing his own book and reading in general as he is also a writer At about 23:20, Brad describes the horrific event and subsequent article, called “What Happened after my Kidnapping,” based on the event At about 28:00, Brad talks about the importance of Keiichi Imura’s contributions to the book and how his further descriptions of George “Horse” Yoshinaga and Babe Nomura “grounded” the story for Brad; additionally, Brad talks about the incredible help provided by Bacon Sakitani and the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center At about 34:25, Brad talks about the positive and meaningful feedback he’s received regarding The Eagles of Heart Mountain At about 37:00, Brad talks about the ways in which the book tells about a small slice of sporting life while also covering the greater tragedies of the Japanese-American internment and the racism leading up to it At about 39:30, Brad talks about the importance of labels and what nomenclature is considered “correct” when referencing the removal of Japanese and Japanese-Americans from the West Coast during WWII At about 42:30, Brad talks about the importance of sports at Heart Mountain Camp  At about 46:20, Brad talks about parallels between the events of the book and contemporary goings-on, including similar disinformation campaigns that fueled the hatred At about 48:50, Pete and Brad talk about the twisted and circular reasoning used by both “election fraud” devotees of 2020 and those who advanced the racist and xenophobic tropes that led to the horrific mistreatment of the Japanese and Japanese-Americans during WWII At about 50:45, Brad discusses some craft points, including the ways in which Brad began each chapter At about 56:05, Brad reads a section from The Eagles of Heart Mountain, a beautiful flashback scene from a football game at Heart Mountain At about 1:01:10, Brad talks about upcoming projects You can now subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts, and leave me a five-star review. You can also ask for the podcast by name using Alexa, and find the pod on Spotify, Stitcher,  and on Amazon Music. Follow me on IG, where I’m @chillsatwillpodcast, or on Twitter, where I’m @chillsatwillpo1. This is a passion project of mine, a DIY operation, and I’d love for your help in promoting what I’m convinced is a unique and spirited look at an often-ignored art form. The intro song for The Chills at Will Podcast is “Wind Down” (Instrumental Version), and the other song played on this episode was “Hoops” (Instrumental)” by Matt Weidauer, and both songs are used through ArchesAudio.com.

1hr 4mins

16 Mar 2021

Episode artwork

Bradford Pearson, "The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration and Resistance in World War II America" (Atria, 2021)

New Books Network

In the spring of 1942, the United States government forced 120,000 Japanese Americans from their homes in California, Oregon, Washington, and Arizona and sent them to incarceration camps across the West. Nearly 14,000 of them landed on the outskirts of Cody, Wyoming, at the base of Heart Mountain.Behind barbed wire fences, they faced racism, cruelty, and frozen winters. Trying to recreate comforts from home, many established Buddhist temples and sumo wrestling pits. Kabuki performances drew hundreds of spectators—yet there was little hope.That is, until the fall of 1943, when the camp’s high school football team, the Eagles, started its first season and finished it undefeated, crushing the competition from nearby, predominantly white high schools. Amid all this excitement, American politics continued to disrupt their lives as the federal government drafted men from the camps for the front lines—including some of the Eagles. As the team’s second season kicked off, the young men faced a choice to either join the Army or resist the draft. Teammates were divided, and some were jailed for their decisions.Bradford Pearson's The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration and Resistance in World War II America (Atria, 2021) honors the resilience of extraordinary heroes and the power of sports in a sweeping and inspirational portrait of one of the darkest moments in American history.Paul Knepper used to cover the Knicks for Bleacher Report. His first book, The Knicks of the Nineties: Ewing, Oakley, Starks and the Brawlers That Almost Won It All was published in September 2020. You can reach Paul at paulknepper@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @paulieknep. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoicesSupport our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/new-books-network

1hr

12 Mar 2021

Similar People

Episode artwork

Bradford Pearson, "The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration and Resistance in World War II America" (Atria, 2021)

New Books in History

Many scholars have interrogated the incarceration of 120,000 Japanese-Americans during WWII – with an eye to understanding the particular type of racism that allowed the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt to punish based on heritage rather than any particular action or crime. Bradford Pearson’s new book The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration, and Resistance in World War II America (Atria/Simon and Schuster, 2021) provides a political history of the incarceration of Japanese-Americans during WWII by, first, going back in time to highlight the complex history of how Japanese (and Chinese) Americans first came to the West coast in the 17th century and the nuances of the racism they encountered over the centuries. Once Pearson establishes the origins of Anti-Asian-American racism, he follows several teenagers who played football both free and incarcerated. These nisei, American citizens of Japanese heritage, had their education and participation in a sport that has come to define what is “American” interrupted by the transports, relocations, and imprisonments that placed families in concentration camps across the United States. Pearson uses their role in a football team created in one concentration camp – Heart Mountain Relocation Center in Cody, Wyoming – to document racism and discrimination but also sports competition as a means of escapism and regaining dignity. Pearson, the former features editor of Southwest: The Magazine and a journalist who has published in the New York Times, Esquire, Time, and Salon, uses foundational works in history and political science, his own oral histories, government surveillance files, and archives associated with Heart Mountain, to create a relevant history for considering how we define citizenship in the U.S., the role of the legislature and courts in establishing and maintain white supremacy, American acceptance of incarceration based on race, and the importance of fully contextualizing American public figures such as Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Earl Warren.Susan Liebell is an associate professor of political science at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. Why Diehard Originalists Aren’t Really Originalists recently appeared in the Washington Post’s Monkey Cage and “Retreat from the Rule of Law: Locke and the Perils of Stand Your Ground” was published in the Journal of Politics (July 2020). Email her comments at sliebell@sju.edu or tweet to @SusanLiebell. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoicesSupport our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/history

47mins

1 Mar 2021

Episode artwork

Bradford Pearson, "The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration and Resistance in World War II America" (Atria, 2021)

New Books in Asian American Studies

Many scholars have interrogated the incarceration of 120,000 Japanese-Americans during WWII – with an eye to understanding the particular type of racism that allowed the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt to punish based on heritage rather than any particular action or crime. Bradford Pearson’s new book The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration, and Resistance in World War II America (Atria/Simon and Schuster, 2021) provides a political history of the incarceration of Japanese-Americans during WWII by, first, going back in time to highlight the complex history of how Japanese (and Chinese) Americans first came to the West coast in the 17th century and the nuances of the racism they encountered over the centuries. Once Pearson establishes the origins of Anti-Asian-American racism, he follows several teenagers who played football both free and incarcerated. These nisei, American citizens of Japanese heritage, had their education and participation in a sport that has come to define what is “American” interrupted by the transports, relocations, and imprisonments that placed families in concentration camps across the United States. Pearson uses their role in a football team created in one concentration camp – Heart Mountain Relocation Center in Cody, Wyoming – to document racism and discrimination but also sports competition as a means of escapism and regaining dignity. Pearson, the former features editor of Southwest: The Magazine and a journalist who has published in the New York Times, Esquire, Time, and Salon, uses foundational works in history and political science, his own oral histories, government surveillance files, and archives associated with Heart Mountain, to create a relevant history for considering how we define citizenship in the U.S., the role of the legislature and courts in establishing and maintain white supremacy, American acceptance of incarceration based on race, and the importance of fully contextualizing American public figures such as Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Earl Warren.Susan Liebell is an associate professor of political science at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. Why Diehard Originalists Aren’t Really Originalists recently appeared in the Washington Post’s Monkey Cage and “Retreat from the Rule of Law: Locke and the Perils of Stand Your Ground” was published in the Journal of Politics (July 2020). Email her comments at sliebell@sju.edu or tweet to @SusanLiebell. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoicesSupport our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/asian-american-studies

47mins

1 Mar 2021

Most Popular

Episode artwork

Bradford Pearson, "The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration and Resistance in World War II America" (Atria, 2021)

New Books in American Studies

Many scholars have interrogated the incarceration of 120,000 Japanese-Americans during WWII – with an eye to understanding the particular type of racism that allowed the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt to punish based on heritage rather than any particular action or crime. Bradford Pearson’s new book The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration, and Resistance in World War II America (Atria/Simon and Schuster, 2021) provides a political history of the incarceration of Japanese-Americans during WWII by, first, going back in time to highlight the complex history of how Japanese (and Chinese) Americans first came to the West coast in the 17th century and the nuances of the racism they encountered over the centuries. Once Pearson establishes the origins of Anti-Asian-American racism, he follows several teenagers who played football both free and incarcerated. These nisei, American citizens of Japanese heritage, had their education and participation in a sport that has come to define what is “American” interrupted by the transports, relocations, and imprisonments that placed families in concentration camps across the United States. Pearson uses their role in a football team created in one concentration camp – Heart Mountain Relocation Center in Cody, Wyoming – to document racism and discrimination but also sports competition as a means of escapism and regaining dignity. Pearson, the former features editor of Southwest: The Magazine and a journalist who has published in the New York Times, Esquire, Time, and Salon, uses foundational works in history and political science, his own oral histories, government surveillance files, and archives associated with Heart Mountain, to create a relevant history for considering how we define citizenship in the U.S., the role of the legislature and courts in establishing and maintain white supremacy, American acceptance of incarceration based on race, and the importance of fully contextualizing American public figures such as Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Earl Warren.Susan Liebell is an associate professor of political science at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. Why Diehard Originalists Aren’t Really Originalists recently appeared in the Washington Post’s Monkey Cage and “Retreat from the Rule of Law: Locke and the Perils of Stand Your Ground” was published in the Journal of Politics (July 2020). Email her comments at sliebell@sju.edu or tweet to @SusanLiebell. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoicesSupport our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/american-studies

47mins

1 Mar 2021

Episode artwork

Bradford Pearson, "The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration and Resistance in World War II America" (Atria, 2021)

New Books in Political Science

Many scholars have interrogated the incarceration of 120,000 Japanese-Americans during WWII – with an eye to understanding the particular type of racism that allowed the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt to punish based on heritage rather than any particular action or crime. Bradford Pearson’s new book The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration, and Resistance in World War II America (Atria/Simon and Schuster, 2021) provides a political history of the incarceration of Japanese-Americans during WWII by, first, going back in time to highlight the complex history of how Japanese (and Chinese) Americans first came to the West coast in the 17th century and the nuances of the racism they encountered over the centuries. Once Pearson establishes the origins of Anti-Asian-American racism, he follows several teenagers who played football both free and incarcerated. These nisei, American citizens of Japanese heritage, had their education and participation in a sport that has come to define what is “American” interrupted by the transports, relocations, and imprisonments that placed families in concentration camps across the United States. Pearson uses their role in a football team created in one concentration camp – Heart Mountain Relocation Center in Cody, Wyoming – to document racism and discrimination but also sports competition as a means of escapism and regaining dignity. Pearson, the former features editor of Southwest: The Magazine and a journalist who has published in the New York Times, Esquire, Time, and Salon, uses foundational works in history and political science, his own oral histories, government surveillance files, and archives associated with Heart Mountain, to create a relevant history for considering how we define citizenship in the U.S., the role of the legislature and courts in establishing and maintain white supremacy, American acceptance of incarceration based on race, and the importance of fully contextualizing American public figures such as Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Earl Warren.Susan Liebell is an associate professor of political science at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. Why Diehard Originalists Aren’t Really Originalists recently appeared in the Washington Post’s Monkey Cage and “Retreat from the Rule of Law: Locke and the Perils of Stand Your Ground” was published in the Journal of Politics (July 2020). Email her comments at sliebell@sju.edu or tweet to @SusanLiebell. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoicesSupport our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/political-science

47mins

1 Mar 2021

Episode artwork

Bradford Pearson, "The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration and Resistance in World War II America" (Atria, 2021)

New Books in Asian American Studies

In the spring of 1942, the United States government forced 120,000 Japanese Americans from their homes in California, Oregon, Washington, and Arizona and sent them to incarceration camps across the West. Nearly 14,000 of them landed on the outskirts of Cody, Wyoming, at the base of Heart Mountain.Behind barbed wire fences, they faced racism, cruelty, and frozen winters. Trying to recreate comforts from home, many established Buddhist temples and sumo wrestling pits. Kabuki performances drew hundreds of spectators—yet there was little hope.That is, until the fall of 1943, when the camp’s high school football team, the Eagles, started its first season and finished it undefeated, crushing the competition from nearby, predominantly white high schools. Amid all this excitement, American politics continued to disrupt their lives as the federal government drafted men from the camps for the front lines—including some of the Eagles. As the team’s second season kicked off, the young men faced a choice to either join the Army or resist the draft. Teammates were divided, and some were jailed for their decisions.Bradford Pearson's The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration and Resistance in World War II America (Atria, 2021) honors the resilience of extraordinary heroes and the power of sports in a sweeping and inspirational portrait of one of the darkest moments in American history.Paul Knepper used to cover the Knicks for Bleacher Report. His first book, The Knicks of the Nineties: Ewing, Oakley, Starks and the Brawlers That Almost Won It All was published in September 2020. You can reach Paul at paulknepper@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @paulieknep. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoicesSupport our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/asian-american-studies

1hr

1 Mar 2021

Episode artwork

Episode 86: Bradford Pearson

Gangrey Podcast

Bradford Pearson is the author of “The Eagles of Heart Mountain: A True Story of Football, Incarceration, and Resistance in World War II America.” The book was published by Atria Books of Simon and Schuster. Pearson’s book tells the story of Japanese internment camps during World War II, and a very special high school football team. That team offered hope to those who were being held in an internment camp on the outskirts of Cody, Wyoming.Pearson spent a lot of time in historical archives to tell this story. It’s something he’s always enjoyed doing. He likes looking for a needle in a haystack, for a bit of information that ties everything together. He went to the National Archives, as well as archives in Wyoming and at UCLA. Pearson has been on the podcast before. He was on Episode 40 in November of 2015. At the time, he was an editor at Southwest: The Magazine. We talked about his story, “My Kidnappers,” which was published by Philadelphia Magazine. He has also written for the New York Times, Esquire, Time, and Salon, among other publications.

46mins

5 Jan 2021

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Episode 40: Robert Sanchez and Bradford Pearson

Gangrey Podcast

This episode of the podcast features the work of Robert Sanchez of 5280 magazine in Denver and Bradford Pearson. Sanchez is a senior staff writer for 5280. In 2014, he was named the City and Regional Magazine Association’s Writer of the Year. He also won that organization’s award for best profile in 2014, for his story “The Rise and Fall of Terrance Roberts.” Sanchez has been a finalist for the City and Regional Magazine Association Writer of the Year three times, and is also a three-time finalist for the prestigious Livingston Awards for Young Journalists. His work has been anthologized twice in “Best American Sports Writing,” and has also been included in “Next Wave: America’s New Generation of Great Literary Journalists” and in the “Missouri Anthology of Narrative Journalism.”Sanchez also contributes features to ESPN The Magazine and has been published in Esquire and Men’s Health. He’s also worked for the Associated Press, the Denver Post, the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Rocky Mountain News.Bradford Pearson is a managing editor at Southwest: The Magazine. In September, he published his story “My Kidnappers” in Philadelphia magazine. The story is about a time when Bradford was in college, and he was robbed and kidnapped at gunpoint. In the piece, he actually tracks down the men who did this to him. Bradford has also been an editor at D Magazine in Dallas. In our Required Reading segment, Zack Lemon offers his thoughts on Tom Junod’s classic piece “The Rapist Says He’s Sorry.” Lemon is a senior at Ashland University who has served as the managing editor of the award-winning student newspaper The Collegian. He is now the senior reporter at the paper, where he has won first place in the Ohio Newspaper Association’s College Newspaper Competition for in-depth reporting for a watchdog piece on the university administration. He recently finished an internship at the Columbus Dispatch.

58mins

6 Nov 2015