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Blue Dot: NASA and Civil Rights: The complex story of racial justice and the space race

Dave talks to three contributors to the book NASA and The Long Civil Rights Movement. Recently published for the first time as a paperback, the book is a collection of essays that came out of a symposium that drew on the expertise of historians to examine NASA's role in the deep south (and beyond) during the height of the space race and to the present day.

Guests include the book's editor, NASA Historian Brian Odom, Cathleen Lewis, curator for the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum and University of Wisconsin history professor Brenda Plummer. From the first black engineers to the first African American astronaut Guion Bluford it's a complex and vital discussion about one of the nation's premier agencies that now strives for diversity and inclusion as it plans to head back to the Moon with the Artemis program.

Dave Schlom is the longtime host and creator of Blue Dot. From surfing to Voyager in interstellar space, rock guitar to orcas in our imperiled oceans, the topics on Blue Dot are as varied as the host’s interests and connections -- which are pretty limitless! An internationally respected space history journalist, Dave is also deeply fascinated by all aspects of the grand workings of nature’s awesome machinery on scales ranging from galactic to subatomic. And topics take in all aspects of the arts and sciences.
Matt Fidler is a producer and sound designer with over 15 years’ experience producing nationally distributed public radio programs. He has worked for shows such as Freakonomics Radio, Selected Shorts, Studio 360, The New Yorker Radio Hour and The Takeaway. In 2017, Matt launched the language podcast Very Bad Words, hitting the #28 spot in the iTunes podcast charts.