How much do you know about Oklahoma City? Probably you know about the bombing, the Dust Bowl, and the Trail of Tears. Maybe, if you’re a basketball fan, you know about the drama of their basketball team, the Thunder. A feeble history, then, of a flyover city in the public imagination. Sam Anderson wants to change all that. As a staff writer for The New York Times Magazine, he was sent off to O.K.C. a few years ago to write about a stolen basketball team, and fell so hard for what he calls “one of the great weirdo cities of the world” that he wrote a whole book about it.
Go beyond the episode:
- Sam Anderson’s Boom Town
- Read his original reporting on the Oklahoma City Thunder, “A Basketball Fairy Tale in Middle America”
- And his Summer 2004 essay for us, “Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Joyce,” as strange a travelogue of Dublin as you’ll ever read
- Peruse the Oklahoma Historical Society’s materials on the Land Run of 1889
- Read the original coverage of the Land Run in the May 18, 1889 edition of Harper’s Weekly (click here for a more legible text-only version) or in The New York Times
Tune in every week to catch interviews with the liveliest voices from literature, the arts, sciences, history, and public affairs; reports on cutting-edge works in progress; long-form narratives; and compelling excerpts from new books. Hosted by Stephanie Bastek.
Download the audio here (right click to “save link as …”)
Have suggestions for projects you’d like us to catch up on, or writers you want to hear from? Send us a note: podcast [at] theamericanscholar [dot] org. And rate us on iTunes! Our theme music was composed by Nathan Prillaman.
Permission required for reprinting, reproducing, or other uses.