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Slow Burn

In the early 1970s, the future of abortion in America was far from settled. Roe v. Wade would change everything, though few knew it at the time. For the seventh season of Slate’s Slow Burn, host Susan Matthews explores the path to Roe—a time when more Republicans than Democrats supported abortion rights. You’ll hear the forgotten story of the first woman ever to be convicted of manslaughter for having an abortion, the unlikely Catholic power couple who helped ignite the pro-life movement, and a rookie Supreme Court justice who got assigned the opinion of a lifetime.

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Warning: This podcast is a series podcast

This means episodes are recommended to be heard in order from the very start. Here's the 10 best episodes of the series anyway though!

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S1 Ep. 1: Martha

People called her crazy, and to be fair she must have seemed crazy. But she was onto something. How Martha Mitchell, the celebrity wife of one of Nixon’s closest henchmen, tried to blow the whistle on Watergate—and ended up ruining her life.Slate Plus members get a bonus episode of Slow Burn every week. Find out more at slate.com/slowburn. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

27mins

28 Nov 2017

Rank #1

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S3 Ep. 1: Against the World

On the first episode of Slow Burn’s third season: How a violent robbery severed Tupac’s friendship with Biggie Smalls and sparked a bicoastal beef that consumed the world of hip-hop.In November 1994, while on trial for sexual abuse, Tupac Shakur is shot five times in a New York recording studio. In the aftermath, he starts to suspect that his erstwhile friend Christopher Wallace, better known as Biggie Smalls, might be involved. It was the start of a beef that would consume the world of hip-hop and end with both men dead.Slate Plus members get bonus episodes of Slow Burn and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

32mins

30 Oct 2019

Rank #2

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S2 Ep. 7: Bedfellows

Today it’s conventional wisdom that all feminists hypocritically turned their backs on Monica Lewinsky. In fact, the scandal provoked an intense debate within the feminist movement about sex, power, and consent. For some, it was obvious that Clinton had victimized Lewinsky and needed to be thrown overboard. For others, it was just as obvious that the scandal was part of a political war in which Clinton was the good guy. In the seventh episode of our series on Clinton’s impeachment, Leon Neyfakh excavates the arguments and ideas that divided liberals—and feminists in particular—at the height of the scandal.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

47mins

26 Sep 2018

Rank #3

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S4 Ep. 1: White Knight

In the first half of the 1980s, it looked like David Duke’s career as a professional racist was over.But the former Ku Klux Klan leader had a comeback plan: He was going to keep quiet about hismost hateful beliefs—and run for the Louisiana House of Representatives.On the first episode of Slow Burn’s fourth season: the campaign that changed David Duke’s life,and that made him a threat to take control of Louisiana.Season 4 of Slow Burn is produced by Josh Levin and Christopher Johnson. Mixing by PaulMounsey. Slow Burn’s production assistant is Madeline Ducharme and Sophie Summergrad isthe podcast’s assistant producer.Slate Plus members get bonus episodes of Slow Burn every season, early access to episodes 2 and 3, plus zero ads. Sign up now to listen and support the show. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

49mins

10 Jun 2020

Rank #4

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S1 Ep. 4: Lie Detectors

How a folksy segregationist senator, a team of young investigators, and a few whistleblowers staged the hearings that made Watergate must-see TV.Slate Plus members get a bonus episode of Slow Burn every week. Find out more at slate.com/slowburn. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

33mins

19 Dec 2017

Rank #5

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S3 Ep. 6: Til Somebody Kills You

In this episode: In the summer of 1996, Tupac Shakur seemed to be on the verge of a decision—about what kind of career he wanted to have, and what kind of life he wanted to live. And then he went to Las Vegas.Slate Plus members get bonus episodes of Slow Burn and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

29mins

4 Dec 2019

Rank #6

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S3 Ep. 5 Plus: "East vs. West"

Slate Plus members get a bonus episode of Slow Burn every week. To listen to the rest of the bonus episodes this season, sign up for Slate Plus now.In this Slow Burn bonus episode, host Joel Anderson and producer Christopher Johnson discuss the growing feud between Tupac and Biggie and the role of Faith Evans. Then, you’ll hear an extended interview with Larry “The Blackspot” Hester, a former staff writer at Vibe who interviewed Tupac, Biggie, and other people at Death Row and Bad Boy as their drama heated up.Production by Chau Tu. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

1hr 11mins

30 Nov 2019

Rank #7

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S1 Ep. 2: The Defeat of Wright Patman

In 1973, the Senate Watergate hearings gripped the nation. But the first congressional hearings on the scandal took place a year earlier—and featured an angry Texan shouting at four empty chairs.Slate Plus members get a bonus episode of Slow Burn every week. Find out more at slate.com/slowburn. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

30mins

5 Dec 2017

Rank #8

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S3 Ep. 8: Dead Wrong

Questions have swirled around the murders of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls ever since their deaths. Who killed them, and why? How come no one was ever charged in either case? Is Tupac still alive and hiding out somewhere?On the final episode of the season, we look at the investigations into the deaths of two rap legends and the competing theories of their cases. We also explore their enormous legacies, and what hip-hop lost when they died.Slate Plus members get bonus episodes of Slow Burn every season, plus zero ads. Sign up now to listen and support the show. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

39mins

18 Dec 2019

Rank #9

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Slow Burn Live: The Kingdom and the Power

A special edition of Slow Burn features Leon Neyfakh live on stage. In the second of two episodes, Leon was joined in by Emily Bazelon, Wesley Morris, Dan Savage, and Andi Zeisler to explore lingering questions about the Clinton legacy. Plus, Clara Jeffery discusses Hillary Clinton.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

53mins

5 Dec 2018

Rank #10

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S2 Ep. 8: Move On

Juanita Broaddrick told Ken Starr’s team of prosecutors that Bill Clinton had raped her in 1978. Her story wasn’t included in the Starr Report—but members of congress found out about it anyway, and had to decide how it would affect their vote on impeachment. In the final episode of our series on Clinton’s impeachment, Leon Neyfakh talks to Broaddrick, and to Lisa Myers, the NBC News reporter whose interview with Broaddrick became a cause célèbre during the impeachment trial. What does it mean that Broaddrick’s story has never really become a part of Bill Clinton’s?--Slate Plus members get a bonus episode of Slow Burn every week. Find out more at slate.com/slowburn. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

57mins

10 Oct 2018

Rank #11

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Introducing The Queen

Linda Taylor was a con artist, a kidnapper, maybe even a murderer. She was also America’s original “welfare queen,” the villain Ronald Reagan needed to create a vision of a country being taken advantage of by its poorest citizens. In this new narrative mini-series, Josh Levin, one of the editors behind Slow Burn, reveals the never-before-told story of a woman whose singular life was forgotten in the rush to create a vicious American stereotype.This podcast is based on Josh Levin’s new book, The Queen: The Forgotten Life Behind an American Myth. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

24mins

4 Jun 2019

Rank #12

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S4 Ep. 2: Robe and Ritual

David Duke dreamed of becoming the charismatic leader who’d bring racism to the masses. Hetried to make that dream a reality by seizing on America’s most powerful symbol of whitesupremacist terror.On the second episode of Slow Burn’s fourth season: what David Duke’s years as a leader in theKu Klux Klan reveal about his beliefs and ambitions, and why Duke decided to leave the Klanbehind.Season 4 of Slow Burn is produced by Josh Levin and Christopher Johnson. Mixing by PaulMounsey. Slow Burn’s production assistant is Madeline Ducharme and Sophie Summergrad isthe podcast’s assistant producer.Slate Plus members get bonus episodes of Slow Burn every season, early access to episode 3, plus zero ads. Sign up now to listen and support the show. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

50mins

17 Jun 2020

Rank #13

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S2 Ep. 3: Cred

When Bill Clinton went to Washington, rumors and accusations from his Arkansas past went with him. But even his most dedicated political enemies couldn't predict where their efforts would lead.Slate Plus members get a bonus episode of Slow Burn every week. Find out more at slate.com/slowburn. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

42mins

22 Aug 2018

Rank #14

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Secret Tracks

Every week, Slate Plus members get a special episode of Slow Burn in which Leon Neyfakh talks to people connected with the Clinton impeachment saga. This week, we’re presenting excerpts from those bonus episodes, featuring interviews with Linda Tripp, consultant Dick Morris, former acting solicitor general Walter Dellinger, and Dillon Teachout, an intern in the independent counsel’s office. Learn more about Slate Plus membership at slate.com/slowburn. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

32mins

3 Oct 2018

Rank #15

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S2 Ep. 4: Alone, Together

What happened between Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky? Why did it happen? And what are we supposed to do about the fact that the whims and impulses of individual men can—and constantly do—alter the course of history? In the fourth episode of our series on Clinton’s impeachment, Leon Neyfakh details Clinton and Lewinsky’s reckless affair.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

42mins

29 Aug 2018

Rank #16

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S3 Ep. 2: Cops on My Tail

In 1992, Ronald Ray Howard shot and killed Texas state trooper Bill Davidson. His lawyer argued he’d been driven to murder by the music he’d been playing in his car: a dubbed copy of Tupac Shakur’s first album, 2Pacalypse Now. On the second episode of Slow Burn’s third season: How gangsta rap and law enforcement found themselves at war. Slate Plus members get bonus episodes of Slow Burn and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

33mins

6 Nov 2019

Rank #17

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S4 Ep. 3: The Nazi and the Republicans

In 1989, David Duke got a foothold in American politics. To build on that victory, he’d have tofend off a Republican official determined to bring him down.In the third episode of our series: the people who tried to stop David Duke’s rise, and the oneswho accommodated him.Season 4 of Slow Burn is produced by Josh Levin and Christopher Johnson. Mixing by PaulMounsey. Slow Burn’s production assistant is Madeline Ducharme and Sophie Summergrad isthe podcast’s assistant producer.Slate Plus members get bonus episodes of Slow Burn every season, plus zero ads. Sign up now to listen and support the show. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

54mins

24 Jun 2020

Rank #18

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S3 Ep. 7: To Live and Die in LA

In this week's episode: After Tupac’s murder: Revenge killings in Compton, a day of atonement in Harlem, and Biggie Smalls risks everything by going back to Cali.Slate Plus members get bonus episodes of Slow Burn and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

31mins

11 Dec 2019

Rank #19

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S1 Ep. 8: Going South

What had to happen for the Watergate scandals to end Richard Nixon’s career? And was his downfall inevitable? In the final episode of Slow Burn’s first season, Leon Neyfakh assesses the president’s desperate final campaign to save himself—and the people and institutions that finally brought him down.Slate Plus members get a bonus episode every week. Find out more at slate.com/slowburn. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

44mins

30 Jan 2018

Rank #20