July 24, 2017 Last Updated 8:14 am

The Atlantic premieres new podcast platform, ‘Radio Atlantic’

The pilot episode, “Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory,” grapples with the question of the past, present, and future of the American idea

Washington, D.C. — July 21, 2017 —  The Atlantic premieres “Radio Atlantic,” the flagship show on its new podcast platform. Co-hosted by editor in chief Jeffrey Goldberg, executive editor Matt Thompson, and contributing editor Alex Wagner, the new weekly show will draw upon The Atlantic’s 160 years of history, combined with the perspective of today’s sharpest journalists, to interpret the news as it happens. Each episode will hone in on a theme and incorporate a revolving cast of voices from The Atlantic’s masthead and beyond.

The pilot episode, “Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory,” grapples with the question of the past, present, and future of the American idea—which has been at the center of what The Atlantic has sought to understand and explain in its century and a half of publication.

Radio Atlantic is available now on iTunes, Google Play, and Stitcher. New episodes will be available on Fridays with new guests joining the hosts each week.

Radio Atlantic’s emphasis on history begins with its theme music: jazz musician and Late Show with Stephen Colbert bandleader Jon Batiste collaborated with The Atlantic to reinterpret the iconic “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” the lyrics of which were first published on the cover of The Atlantic in February 1862. As Goldberg explains in the podcast, the “Battle Hymn” outlived the Civil War and is patriotism manifest in rhyme; generations of Americans have turned to it for comfort and inspiration in times of triumph and trial.

The pilot episode features an interview with Batiste about the making of his “Battle Hymn” interpretation (and see more in a video of Batiste at TheAtlantic.com). Also in the first episode: conversations with The Atlantic’s David Frum and Molly Ball about this question of the American idea and their most recent reporting.

Frum, whose March 2017 cover story “How to Build an Autocracy” continues to reverberate, discusses how the early months of the Trump presidency compare with his expectations so far, whether this moment in American politics likens to the calamitous years of the Civil War, and the future of the party system. Frum says: “The party system [may have] stopped describing the country very well in the way that it stopped describing a country in the 1850s. And I don’t know that the Republican Party as it existed before 2016 can emerge again after this.”

Ball, who writes extensively on national politics, details the sentiment of Trump’s support seven months in. “These core Trump supporters won when he won the election. …Merely by winning and by putting his enemies in their place, he has given them what they wanted. And in that sense, their expectations for the next four years are pretty low.”

Qualcomm is the exclusive sponsor for the first season of Radio Atlantic.

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