Whose Century Is It?

Ideas, Trends & Twists Shaping the 21st Century.

Latest Episodes

Atrocity amnesia

Whose Century Is It? March 24, 2017

What happens when neighbors kill neighbors? What happens when the perpetrators try to bury the past? The past can still both shape and haunt the present, as the villagers of the small Polish town of Jedwabne have found, decades after other villagers there rounded up and killed hundreds of their Jewish neighbors. The World's Nina Porzucki visits the village to see how that past is remembered, and who's willing to talk about it.

Women's work

Whose Century Is It? March 08, 2017

Women around the world face varying degrees of gender discrimination in the workplace — whether they're hired, how much they're paid, whether they advance as fast as men doing the same job. In Jordan, where girls and women generally do better than their male counterparts in school, and where more women than men attend college, startlingly few women participate in the workforce. Why? Asma Khader, a Jordanian lawyer, women's rights activist and former government official, weighs in, in conversation with The World's Shirin Jaafari.

Badass librarians of the Internet Archive

Whose Century Is It? February 23, 2017

Librarians rock. And Internet Archive librarians, aiming to digitize and make universally available all human knowledge, including saving webpages that would otherwise disappear? They're on a whole 'nother level. In this age of alternative facts and disappearing government websites, hear how this small group of badass librarians is working to preserve knowledge, and empower investigative reporters and ordinary citizens to find webpages those with something to hide would rather you didn't find.

Keeping up with killer technology

Whose Century Is It? February 09, 2017

Drones have only been around for a couple of decades, but already, they're reshaping the contours of conflict and raising ethical quandaries. President Barack Obama launched more than 500 drone strikes during his tenure, 10 times more than President George W. Bush. But Obama's drones strikes killed far fewer civilians than did Bush's intervention in Iraq. Still, how much should drones and robotics be used in conflict, and when, and what unintended consequences might this unleash? Peter Singer, Strategist at the New America Foundation and author of "Wired for War: The Robotics Revolution and Conflict in the 21st Century" talks with The World's Jeb Sharp.

Make America Kind Again

Whose Century Is It? January 27, 2017

America became a global leader over the past century through openness, generosity, and soft power —the ability to attract, and to make others want to emulate your way of life, including inclusivity and equal rights. Donald Trump's vision of America, as voiced in his campaign and reflected in his first words and deeds as president, has caused more global dismay than attraction. Will the Trump era mark the end of the American century? Listen in to hear some early takes.

About the show

"Whose Century Is It?" is a biweekly podcast, exploring the ideas, trends and twists shaping the 21st century. Is this century China's, or once again America's, or someone else's entirely? It's too early to say; but creator and host Mary Kay Magistad offers interviews, stories and perspectives from around the world that provide informative — and often surprising — ways to think about the question. "Whose Century Is It?" is a coproduction between PRI's The World and Magistad, a former foreign correspondent and Asia hand who has reported from some 40 countries, on both sides of the turn of the 21st century.  

"Whose Century Is It?" is funded by a grant from the Henry Luce Foundation.