The Waters and Harvey Show

Mar 9, 2017

Blue Ridge Public Radio presents the second season of The Waters and Harvey Show. The weekly series addresses the experiences and influences of minorities across Western North Carolina and offers listeners informed conversations and interviews about history, culture and their impact on current affairs.

According to co-host Dr. Darin Waters, Assistant Professor of History at UNC Asheville, "We are excited to bring The Waters and Harvey Show to BPR News. Our series is committed to giving voice to historically marginalized people and communities. Through our lively conversations, we hope to encourage a deeper understanding of our vibrant community."

The Waters and Harvey Show explores the experiences of historically marginalized people and their communities, and considers the influence those experiences have within our increasingly diverse society.

"The Waters and Harvey Show strives to promote increased visibility and understanding of a range of challenging issues facing communities whose historical experiences often go unacknowledged. Blue Ridge Public Radio serves as an important platform on which to continue working toward this goal in a way that engages broader society," said co-host Dr. Marcus Harvey, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at UNC Asheville.

The program airs on Saturday afternoons at 3:00 pm on BPR News. It’s available for on-demand listening at and is widely available as a podcast including on the free BPR mobile app and other podcast channels.

Host biographies:

Dr. Darin J. Waters is an Assistant Professor of History and Special Assistant to the Chancellor for Community Outreach and Engagement at the University of North Carolina at Asheville where he teaches courses in American history, North Carolina History, Appalachian History, African American and Brazilian History.  He also specializes in the history of race relations in both the United States and Latin America. Dr. Waters received his doctorate from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2012.  While at Chapel Hill, he worked with Dr. Harry L. Watson and the noted African American historian Dr. John Hope Franklin.  Dr. Waters’ own research has focused on the history of African Americans in Asheville and Western North Carolina.  More recently, Dr. Waters has written about issues surrounding the construction of the nation’s collective historical memory, exploring the impact that that memory has on the present.   

Dr. Marcus L. Harvey is an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Asheville where he teaches courses on African indigenous and Atlantic religions, folklorist Zora Neale Hurston, and religion in American popular culture. He has expertise in the field of religion and literature as well. Dr. Harvey earned his Ph.D. in religion from Emory University in Atlanta in 2012. His research specialization focuses on the role of indigenous spiritual traditions in the creation of knowledge among the Akan of Ghana and the Yorùbá of Nigeria, as well as on the work of Zora Neale Hurston, one of the pre-eminent writers of twentieth-century African-American literature.  Dr. Harvey has presented and published nationally and internationally on topics related to the study of African forms of thought and black cultural experience. His work has also explored cultural identity issues surrounding the history of Asheville’s Goombay Festival.  

The Waters & Harvey Show – Program list:

Click on program title to listen to podcast.

Why study history? - Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey explore the work of Carter G. Woodson, the father of African American History, and discuss the new  National Museum of African American History and Culture.

History and Memory – Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey discuss the difference between memory and history. 

History and Memory: A French Perspective – A conversation with Dr. Oliver Gloag, Assistant Professor of French and Francophone Studies at UNC Asheville, on how race is absent from that nation’s historical memory.  

Mining the Past – A conversation Gene Hyde, Head of Special Collections, UNC Asheville.  Why is the collection and maintenance of archival data important?  

Exploring the Native American Past - A conversation with Dr. Trey Adcock, a member of the Cherokee Nation and an Assistant Professor in the Education Department at UNC Asheville. 

The State of Black Asheville/State of Black North Carolina. A conversation with Dr. Dwight Mullen, Professor of Political Science at UNC Asheville and author of the annual State of Black Asheville report. 

The State of Black Asheville II – How to build on the community’s strengths - A follow up conversation with Dr. Dwight Mullen, Professor of Political Science at UNC Asheville and author of the annual State of Black Asheville report. 

Beneath the Veneer – A discussion about a new documentary that looks at success, opportunity, and equality in America through the eyes of several African-American boys in Asheville. The filmmakers are Diane Tower-Jones and Sekou Coleman. 

Training The Next Generation – “It Takes A Village” -  African in its origins, this proverb expresses the way many communities functioned in the past. On this program a conversation with Keynon Lake, the Executive Director of My Daddy Taught Me That, who is working to keep this tradition alive in Asheville. 

Civility – A look at the ways some members of our community are working to repair and improve civic discussions. A conversation with high school students Jacob Dowler and Wyatt Gildea, who have started a Social Justice Club at Christ School.

Remembering the Civil War – Understanding its place in our imagination and exploring and documenting North Carolina’s unique and complex history during and after the Civil War. On this program – a conversation with David Winslow, Senior Consultant to the North Carolina Civil War History Center.

Community Story Telling – Listening to the personal stories of real people, facing real challenges in the community may help us better understand social conditions. Of equal importance is the opportunity for the story teller to share those challenges. Interview with  JaNesha Slaughter, UNC Asheville senior, whose work at the Key Center for Community Engaged Learning is focused on  grassroots activism 

The Realities of a Career in Sports – An interview with Johnny Davis, former NBA player and coach, who is encouraging young men in the African American community to temper their   expectations about pro sports and better prepare themselves for a successful life in other professions. 

The Realities of a Career in Sports II – Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey ask former NBA player and coach, Johnny Davis, to join them for a follow-up conversation. In this episode they discuss how historical narrative can bestow or withhold empowerment to contemporary communities – especially for African Americans. 

Resilience, Reinvention, Innovation – Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey speak with Troy Ball, founder and owner of Asheville Distilling Company, about her new book “Pure Heart: A Spirited Tale of Grace, Grit, and Whiskey.” They found out how she overcame personal and professional obstacles to build a successful company and a non-profit foundation. 

The Y at 110 - With a dual mission to eliminate racism and to empower women, Asheville’s YWCA celebrates 110 years of fighting for social and economic justice. On this episode, a conversation with YWCA CEO Beth Maczka and UNC Asheville history professor Sarah Judson.   

The Legacy of Reconstruction – Part 1 - Southern Appalachia’s experience during Reconstruction continues to have repercussions today. A noted historian observed that the process of reconciling a society torn apart by civil conflict is often as contentious as the conflict itself. On this program, a conversation with historian Steven Nash about his new book: Reconstruction's Ragged Edge: The Politics of Postwar Life in the Southern Mountains.

A Splendid Failure – In Part 2 of a conversation with historian Steven Nash, we delve into the rise of the KKK and how politics was realigned in Western North Carolina during Reconstruction, which W.E.B. DuBois called “a splendid failure.”  Dr. Nash’s new book is Reconstruction’s Ragged Edge: The Politics of Postwar Life in the Southern Mountains.

A Life of Trail Blazing – Part 1 - Alfred J. Whitesides, Jr. has trail blazed across his entire life, from high school civil rights activist, banker, community leader, and now Buncombe County’s first African American Commissioner. Mr. Whitesides is also an accomplished storyteller. In this conversation, he reflects on his early days in Asheville. 

Continuing the conversation with Alfred J. Whitesides, Jr. - Continuing the conversation with Buncombe County Commissioner Alfred J. Whitesides, Jr.  Whitesides talks about the role that family ( his own and that of Martin Luther King Jr’s ) played in his life – setting standards of expectation and conduct . He talks about his work with ASCORE during high school in Asheville and his years of study at NCCU – North Carolina Central University -  the first public liberal arts institution for African Americans in the nation.

Charlotte lawyer and Asheville native James Ferguson - A conversation with Charlotte attorney James Ferguson. Ferguson talks about growing up in a very segregated Asheville  in the 1950s and 60s . His schooling at Stephens-Lee High School – the only secondary school for African Americans in WNC at that time and his work in ASCORE while at Stephens Lee. Ferguson also talks about his time at NCCU and Columbia Law School. 

Vance Monument Debate – At the center of Asheville stands a monument in honor of Zebulon Vance, the Governor of North Carolina during the Civil War. His life, his politics, and the obelisk in his name are discussed in this edition of the program. Guests include distinguished historian and Vance biographer, Dr. Gordon McKinney, and Kimberly Floyd, Site Manager of the Vance Birthplace Historic Site. Their discussion is also a preview of a symposium about Vance being held at UNC Asheville September 14-15.   

WNC’s Resilient African American Community – This edition explores the ways that local groups and organizations are working to strengthen their communities. Today’s guest is Tracey Greene-Washington, a founder of CoThinkk, a relatively new Asheville-based philanthropic organization. Its giving circle and other fundraising activities provide grants to African American and Latino organizations. CoThinkk is partnering with UNC Asheville for the 4th Annual African Americans in WNC Conference set for October 19-21.  

Coming to terms with the Civil War – The legacy of the Southern Confederacy and its lingering monuments have triggered disturbing events and charged debate. In this episode, we talk with Dr. David Blight, the eminent Yale historian whose seminal work is in the field of memory studies. Can a nation ever heal and come to terms with the immense tragedy of the Civil War?

We Cannot Escape History – Lincoln famously reminded Americans during the Civil War that they would be remembered. One of those whose memory is contentious is North Carolina’s Civil War Governor Zebulon Vance. Today’s program continues a conversation with historian and Vance biographer Gordon McKinney and Kimberly Floyd, the site manager of the Vance Birth Place and Historic Site in Weaverville.

The Civil War in the Southern Highlands – In this edition, a conversation with Les Rekker, the Director of the Rural Heritage Museum at Mars Hill University. A new exhibit at the museum about life in the region during the Civil War is helping us reckon with its unique human perspective.

Music of the Highlands of Southern Appalachia - The music tradition of a people or a region tells us a great deal about a people and their culture. On this program we’ll find out about the African American component to the music of Southern Appalachia with Doug Orr, co-author of “Wayfaring Strangers.”

Word On The Street - A conversation with Tamiko Ambrose Murray, co-founder of Asheville Writers in Schools and Community, and its “Word On The Street” online magazine. The project is designed to give young people in communities of color a voice, and an opportunity to show their gifts and talents.

NASA’s Pioneering African American Women – The hit movie “Hidden Figures” is a true story about the critical contributions that African American women made to America’s space program during the height of the Cold War in the 1960s. Our guest, Dr. Christine Darden, was a member of that remarkable team and speaks about how her dreams of becoming a mathematician were realized at NASA. 

A Gateway To Understanding & Tolerance - Outgoing University of North Carolina Asheville Chancellor Mary Grant is a champion of Liberal Arts in education. She argues that this approach is needed now more than ever.

Building Community – In a conversation with community advocate Shuvonda Harper, Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey discuss the concept and reality of how community is built and maintained. The experience of Asheville’s Southside Neighborhood shines a light on what was lost in that community and what is now being rebuilt and relaunched.

Reflections – The Waters & Harvey Show celebrates a full broadcast year on Blue Ridge Public Radio. The co-hosts pause to reflect what they’ve learned through their interviews of fascinating guests over the course of nearly three-dozen programs.

Legacy on the Land – Noted authors and conservation movement pioneers Audrey and Frank Peterman are advocates for breaking the color barrier in the national park system and opening up these national treasures in a truly inclusive way. They join Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey to discuss their approach to encouraging all Americans to re-engage with the nation’s natural wonders. 

Growing Brave By Reflection - Darin Waters cites Thomas Paine’s writing that a real person “smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection.”  He and co-host Marcus Harvey take time out from their lively interviews to reflect on what they’ve learned over the course of this series. 

Brave Reflection – On this program co-hosts Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey continue a conversation that reflects on some of the thornier issues that have been raised during the series.

North Carolina’s Lost Colony – Noted author Andrew Lawler talks about his new book that explores the mystery Roanoke Island, a short-lived settlement that was established in 1585.  He also discusses how myths about American identity are tied to this very early English effort to colonize the New World.

The Curiosity Drive – On this program, the co-hosts speak with college student Daniel Suber about growing up in public housing and how curiosity and education have powered him forward. He’s now a community activist and advocate focused on finding solutions to the challenges many local communities face.

Teaching Diversity – The founding director of Asheville’s Center for Diversity Education, Deborah Miles, is retiring. She looks back on what the CDE has accomplished and the challenges ahead for the community.

Building On A Theory Of Hope – Asheville’s South Side Community was once the thriving center of the region’s African-American community. In a conversation with Sekou Coleman, we’ll find out about South Side Rising, a major project that harnesses the arts to build civic health in that community. 

The Marvelous Math Club – In this program, we’ll hear about a project in Asheville that hopes to narrow racial and economic gaps in education by reframing how students think about math. Guests are the program’s co-creators, UNC Asheville math professor Sam Kaplan and Marta Alcala-William of Asheville Public Schools.

A Small Place With A Huge History – Historian Dan Pierce talks about his new book “Hazel Creek: The Life and Death of an Iconic Mountain Community.” Its demise raises questions about how stereotypes of Southern Appalachian people cleared the way for absorbing the community into the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. 

Art On The Streets – Asheville is getting closer to commissioning its latest public art project. A conversation on this program -on how public art can help deepen our sense of attachment to our community with the chair of the City of Asheville’s Public Art and Cultural Commission Jason Miller and selection panel member Michael Carter. 

The Coolcast – Today’s guest is special to co-host Darin Waters. It’s his son Jonathan, who is working to keep himself and his generation engaged in our nation’s civic life. Jonathan’s new podcast, The Coolcast, addresses the challenges and opportunities ahead for the Biggest Generation: Millennials. He’s particularly interested in how young men of color are grappling with the move into adulthood. 

Leading The Future – As the Asheville area is grapples with the profound challenges of growth, leadership for the years ahead isn’t guaranteed. In this program, a conversation with Ed Manning, who runs Leadership Asheville, about supporting a culture of civic decision making and problem solving. 

Summer Learning Loss – Horizons is a new program in Asheville that reaches students from low-income families who are particularly vulnerable to summer learning loss because of a lack of access to quality summer programs.  We’ll find out more in this conversation with Asheville business leader Himanshu Karvir who launched Horizons.

Reflecting On A Life Of Service To Others – Co-host Marcus Harvey welcomes his father - Dr. Louis Charles Harvey – to the program. Dr. Harvey will soon retire from Washington, DC’s venerable Metropolitan AME Church. He is a scholar, educator, and pastor, and speaks about the challenges he faced and the accomplishments he attained over his distinguished career.

A Spirit of Civic Engagement -   Civic health is the social and economic vitality that results when citizens interact productively with their neighbors, involve themselves in community institutions, and actively engage in public issues. North Carolina’s current level of civic engagement offers great room for improvement. Today’s guest is Leslie Boney, the Director of the Institute for Emerging Issues at North Carolina State University.

Black Mountain College’s Legacy – The experimental college that was located outside Asheville had an outsized influence on American arts and culture. One of its many breakthroughs was inviting renowned African American artist Jacob Lawrence to become a summer teacher there at a time when Jim Crow was very much in force in North Carolina. Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey talk with the executive director of the Black Mountain College Museum, Jeff Arnal, about preserving the legacy of the school.

Big Data For Social Change - The collection and use of endless streams of information is troubling for some, but many see the possibility of harnessing big data for positive social change. On this program, Darin Waters and Marcus Harvey are joined by political scientist Dwight Mullen, who originated the annual research-based State Of Black Asheville, along with Patrick Conant of Code For Asheville. 

It Takes A Village Revisited – Kenyon Lake, the founder of My Daddy Taught Me That, discusses the dramatic growth of his mentoring program, and takes a look at My Sistah Taught Me That. It’s the spin-off for girls that his wife, Leslie Council Lake, has established.  Both organizations are responding to the significant achievement gap experienced by African American students in Asheville area schools.

North Carolina’s Jazz Giants - Jazz is one of American’s most original art forms and North Carolina musicians have played a critical role in shaping it. Bill Heath is the founder of the Carolina Bop Society and takes us through the who’s who of jazz masters from the state.

Data Access and Equity  - The challenges, dangers and benefits of data collection and analysis. Who controls access to data and where are the inequities in that access ? How can Civic Technology address these concerns and maximize the benefits of the data ?  A  conversation with Patrick Conant and Jesse Michael. 

A Culture of Leadership – Western North Carolina faces a raft of important decisions for its future and looks within its community for leaders to manage these complicated processes. Leadership Asheville plays a critical role in this process and its Executive Director, Ed Manning, joins the conversation to discuss the progress that’s being made toward developing a more robust culture of leadership for the area. 

Town-Gown Community Building – As Asheville faces a range of critical challenges and decisions, we take a look at how the city and its university interact. Our guests are Asheville Mayor Esther Manheimer and Dr. Nancy Cable, Chancellor of the University of North Carolina – Asheville. They discuss the need for a very open and honest collaboration between the two large institutions and the progress that’s been made to address major issues facing the community.

Defiant Requiem - Understanding resistance to oppression is critical to a deeper appreciation of freedom. Verdi’s “Requiem” was performed as an act of defiance by Jews held captive at an infamous concentration camp in Czechoslovakia during WW2.  The performance comes to Asheville to help launch several educational and community initiatives.

Rabbit’s Café - Historic African-American landmarks have disappeared in Asheville at an alarming rate. A project is underway to restore and relaunch Rabbit’s Café & Hotel, which played a very significant role in the community’s past. Today’s guest is musician Claude Coleman who is leading the project.