Plot Twist

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By WNYC Studios. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

From boosters to breakthrough infections, pandemic vocabulary is still all over the news. On this week’s On the Media, why the terms we use to talk about the virus obscure as much as they reveal. And, why the history of medical progress is filled with so many twists and turns. Plus, why a preference for simple stories has made it so hard to keep track of the pandemic.

1. Katherine J. Wu [@KatherineJWu], staff writer at The Atlantic, on the slippery definitions of our pandemic vocabulary. Listen.

2. Dr. Paul Offit [@DrPaulOffit], professor of pediatrics at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, on why medical progress always carries risk. Listen.

3. OTM correspondent Micah Loewinger [@MicahLoewinger] speaks with Soren Wheeler [@SorenWheeler] and Rachael Piltch-Loeb [@Rpiltchloeb] about why the narrative arc of the COVID-19 pandemic has been deeply unsatisfying. With some help from Kurt Vonnegut. Listen.

Music:

In the Bath - Randy Newman

Milestones - Bill Evans Trio

Paperback Writer - Quartetto d'Archi Dell'orchestra Sinfonica di Giuseppe Verdi

Quizas Quizas Quizas - Ramon Sole

Misterioso - Kronos Quartet

Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered - Brad Mehldau Trio

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