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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Through the Cracks

Available on Apple Podcasts / Podcasts

A new WAMU podcast, Through the Cracks, tells the story of Relisha Rudd, an eight-year-old girl who went missing from a Washington, D.C., homeless shelter in 2014. By the time the police began their official investigation, in March of that year, no one in Rudd’s family, at her shelter, or at her school had seen Relisha for at least 18 days. This podcast, hosted by Jonquilyn Hill, isn’t a true-crime investigation; it’s an examination of how society failed Relisha, from systemic poverty and its de-stabilizing impacts to the unchecked shelter system and beyond. Hill is a compassionate guide, never losing sight of Relisha, the loss at the heart of her subject, even as she zooms out to scrutinize the fissured structures that surround the case. It’s important—oftentimes enraging—reporting, but it also feels particularly significant these days, when so many children are without the usual, albeit imperfect, safety nets, such as school. —C.J.F.

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