Sociology

  • Pulitzer finalist: Colonizing Wisconsin was more about plunder than removing Indigenous people

    Michael Witgen’s deep research of Indigenous and early North American history is evident in his 2021 book “Seeing Red: Indigenous Land, American Expansion and the Political Economy of Plunder in North America.” A finalist for this year’s Pulitzer Prize in History, the book examines colonization of a region now known as the Midwest and was…

    Pulitzer finalist: Colonizing Wisconsin was more about plunder than removing Indigenous people
  • Plans for Vel Phillips statue at Wisconsin Capitol would build representation of women in public monuments

    A statue of the first Black woman elected to statewide office in Wisconsin may soon be added to the state Capitol grounds, joining a rare anthology of statues nationwide that portray real women throughout American history. About 6 percent of all public monuments portray an actual woman from history, according to research by Sierra Rooney,…

    Plans for Vel Phillips statue at Wisconsin Capitol would build representation of women in public monuments
  • ‘Essentially a human telephone’: Interpreting American Sign Language is her calling throughout Wisconsin

    Early in her life, Jacqueline Corey felt a deep calling to explore sign language, so when a course teaching the language became available at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, she seized the opportunity. “I took it, and I took every succeeding class I could after that to immerse myself in the culture, in the language…

    ‘Essentially a human telephone’: Interpreting American Sign Language is her calling throughout Wisconsin
  • A sense of wonder through the eyes — and ears — of a child

    Lulu Miller is known for her work on curiosity-driven radio shows and podcasts, including “Invisibilia” and “Radiolab,” where she is now a co-host. She is also the author of the book, “Why Fish Don’t Exist: A Story of Loss, Love and the Hidden Order of Life.“ Her latest project, near and dear to her heart,…

    A sense of wonder through the eyes — and ears — of a child
  • Tubas in Wisconsin: Getting down to brass tacks

    It feels like everyone’s dad in Wisconsin plays the tuba. That was Elizabeth Renner’s impression after she moved to Madison from Chicago a year ago. Her other thought was that people are still very much into polka music. “Shouldn’t that have died out decades ago?” she said. Renner asked several people about tubas and polka,…

    Tubas in Wisconsin: Getting down to brass tacks
  • WisContext: What The COVID-19 Pandemic Looks Like In Wisconsin: Maps And Charts

    Editor’s note: This article was originally published on April 1, 2020 and has since been updated, with the most recent changes made on Aug. 6, 2022. Data visualizations are updated on a recurring basis. Following its emergence, the COVID-19 pandemic struck Wisconsin in a series of waves with varying degrees of intensity that has peaked…

    WisContext: What The COVID-19 Pandemic Looks Like In Wisconsin: Maps And Charts
  • Appleton group gives, receives gifts to connect neighbors and create community

    When Sarah Scanlan met a woman she messaged on Facebook in her Appleton garden, she expected to give away camomile tea leaves. But then the two connected over composting, too, and Scanlan walked away with a gardening friend and a deeper sense of community. The two women met because of Appleton’s Buy Nothing Facebook group,…

    Appleton group gives, receives gifts to connect neighbors and create community
  • Why is Mount Horeb the ‘troll capital of the world’?

    What’s the deal with the trolls? That’s the No. 1 question people ask when they visit the Driftless Historium and Mount Horeb Area Historical Society, said executive director Destinee Udelhoven. Trolls are everywhere you look in the Dane County Village of Mount Horeb. Troll cartoons are on the street signs, and troll footprints are on…

    Why is Mount Horeb the ‘troll capital of the world’?
  • How To Become A Local After Moving To A New Place

    Moving to a new place can be hard. You don’t know your way around town, you have no idea what people do to have fun and many times you’re far away from your friends and family. It’s a process Charles Robert MckeIvy is in the midst of. MckeIvy recently moved to the Madison area and…

    How To Become A Local After Moving To A New Place
  • A Q For You: Where Does The Name ‘Chicken Q’ Come From?

    Marilee Cronin grew up near La Crosse, and she always wondered what the origin of the Chicken Q was. So she asked WPR’s WHYsconsin that very question. A Chicken Q is a name for a charcoal chicken dinner sold as part of a fundraiser. But the name is really only known regionally in the La…

    A Q For You: Where Does The Name ‘Chicken Q’ Come From?