Strange Fruit

“In the East End, there’s dance everywhere. In the West End, you don’t see that.” John O. Keen, artistic director of Keen Dance Theater, is taking on theNinth Street Divide (and the race divide, and the economic divide) in the world of dance.

After 11 years in New York, the Louisville native returned home to start his own dance troupe, with lessons affordable to low-income dancers, and a focus on diversity in casting and story telling.

Keen joins us this week to talk about how embracing dancers of difference races, body types, backgrounds, and training levels creates a stronger ensemble.

And in Juicy Fruit, Salon’s Erin Keane sits in to talk about the allegations of sexual assault against Bill Cosby—and all the victim-blaming in their wake, both in casual conversation and in the media. CNN’s Don Lemon, for example, questioned an alleged victim about why she didn’t use her teeth to fight off Cosby after she’s allegedly been drugged. When Janice Dickinson told her story to Entertainment Tonight, the first question we see interviewer Kevin Frazier ask is, “Were you trying to fight him off?”

Erin’s piece in Salon examines her own complicity in what seemed like an unspoken agreement among entertainment journalists to avoid asking about the allegations for all these years.

While Cosby himself has remained officially silent on the accusations (besides a statement from his lawyer which was removed the next day), he did address them after our show went to tape, at an appearance in Florida Friday night, saying he “shouldn’t have to answer to innuendos.”

She also wrote about that cosmic-sounding interview the New York Times Magazine did with Willow and Jaden Smith, which included quotes about the ability to slow down and speed up time. “When you’re thinking about something happy, you’re thinking about something sad,” Jaden explained.

“When you think about an apple, you also think about the opposite of an apple. It’s a tool for understanding mathematics and things with two separate realities. But for creativity: That comes from a place of oneness. That’s not a duality consciousness.”

People reacted strongly to the interview, many of them criticizing Will and Jada Pinkett-Smith’s parenting (which is nothing new). But are the kids actually troubled? Or is this just another case of concern trolling and respectability politics?

Strange Fruit can now be heard on 89.3 WFPL in Louisville (and live streaming at wfpl.org) on Saturday nights at 10 p.m.

Laura is LPM's Director of Podcasts & Special Projects.