New Orleans is a city in a swamp—a city, some argue, that should have never been built. So how did it become one of America’s most important sites in the 1800s, and a critical battleground in the American Civil War? This week, to mark the new season of Queer Eye, we’re exploring New Orleans history with Dr. Kathryn Olivarius in a special two-part episode. Today, we’re breaking down the basics on antebellum New Orleans. Tomorrow, we’ll learn all about New Orleans’ rampant history of yellow fever.
A note from the team: this episode discusses enslavement and references to bodily harm.
Kathryn Olivarius is a prizewinning historian of slavery, medicine, and disease. She is Assistant Professor of History at Stanford University. Her book Necropolis: Disease, Power, and Capitalism in the Cotton Kingdom, published by Harvard University Press, was recently awarded the Frederick Jackson Turner Prize.
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Our executive producer is Erica Getto. Our editor is Andrew Carson. Production support from Julie Carrillo, Chris McClure, and Emily Bossak.Our theme music is “Freak” by QUIÑ; for more, head to TheQuinCat.com.