Some call it Hurricane Katrina. Some call it the Federal Flood. Others call it the day the levees broke. On August 29, 2005, the city of New Orleans was submerged. That story of hubris, incompetence, and nature's wrath is now etched into the national consciousness. But the people who lived through the flood and its aftermath have a different story to tell. A story of rumors, betrayal, and one of the most misunderstood events in American history. Hosted by Vann R. Newkirk II.
Michael Walsh • Yonkers Public Library • Dec 16, 2020
"Newkirk does an excellent job of showing how the conditions spiraled out of control in New Orleans on an hour-to-hour basis. Floodlines contrasts the narrations those interviewed, with how certain news outlets reported on Katrina’s aftermath in New Orleans. These outlets circulated misleading stories that described murders, rapes, and gangs of killers roaming the streets. The survivors speak about these false perceptions being a result of racist beliefs, and how hurtful these reports were to those merely trying to survive. This makes listening to Floodlines so important. I recommend listening to Floodlines to gain a better understanding of Hurricane Katrina and those who lived through it. The broad range of perspectives compel the audience to find out what happened next. Newkirk draws listeners into the series and maintains attention for all eight episodes. …"
Galen Beebe • Bello Collective • Dec 2, 2020
"It’s exactly what I want from a magazine’s podcast — an important story, beautiful writing, powerful characters, and rich sound design. And the website art is really nice, too."
Neroli Price • Daily Maverick • Aug 30, 2020
"Exquisite writing and smooth narration from The Atlantic’s Vann R. Newkirk II paint a vivid picture of how New Orleanians were failed over and over again by those in positions of power. This context provides a backdrop to the real heart of the story: the first-person accounts from those who lived through Katrina. These accounts crisscross the big picture, shrinking the distance between the listener and the story and making the narrative intimate and personal."
Nikki Lohr • PodcastReview.org • Apr 13, 2020
"Floodlines Is a Visceral History of Hurricane Katrina. Unfortunately for everyone, there has never been a better time to listen to a podcast about Katrina, amid the controversy surrounding the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic. Still, there are flashes of beauty in the podcast, when we hear New Orleanians helping one another. "
Nicholas Quah • Vulture • Apr 13, 2020
"The timing couldn’t have been more strange. Floodlines is the best audio documentary to come out this year so far by a mile. Much of its power lies in the way it’s able to link the big picture to more personal, intimate horrors. The music, evocative of the city’s jazz history, is deployed with impressive restraint, and the result is storytelling wrapped in a melancholic haze. I know it can be a really hard time for a lot of people to pick up this particular story, especially when there are opinion pieces out there...But I do believe it remains a worthwhile exercise, if you’re able, to stare into the abyss, because there may something in there to prepare you for what’s to come."
Veronique T. • Mar 2, 2021
"Powerful storytelling that kept me hooked episode after episode. This podcast retraces the aftermath of levees breaking in New Orleans from 2005 to today. It highlights methodically that the media portrayal and collective recollection of this tragic series of events, couldn’t be further from the experience of the people of New Orleans. It makes the strong argument that racial bias resulted in a toxic narrative that ultimately caused so many lives to be ruined. For all the hurt and injustice of this exposé, this is also a story of strength and survival. I definitely recommend listening to this podcast."