A highlight from The Kidnapping of Patty Hearst | The Appeal of True Crime | 5

American Scandal


In 1974, the nation was captivated by a new story that seems stranger than fiction. Patricia Hearst, the granddaughter of publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst, had been kidnapped from her home in Berkeley by a group of radical political activists. The group called itself the symbionese Liberation Army, and although her kidnappers threatened her life and kept her trapped in a dark closet for weeks, Hearst would soon agree to become a member of the SLA. Hearst went on to take part in bank robberies. She trained to be a guerrilla fighter, and after she issued scathing condemnations of her family and their worldview, it appeared that hers to become a different person, a convert to a radical cause. As the saga unfolded, it stirred debate about wealth, politics, and even the nature of free will. But for many, the kidnapping of Patricia Hearst was a story about the media, and the public's appetite for shocking and sensational news coverage. It's a discussion that reemerged decades later, with the rise of true crime, a genre that's forced conversations about the media's responsibilities when telling stories about criminals and their victims. My guest today is journalist and author Sarah weinman, who writes the crime column for The New York Times book review. She's the author of the Rio Lolita. Her latest book is scoundrel, which tells the story of a convicted murderer who grew famous in was set free, only to attempt murder once again. We'll discuss how the coverage of Patricia Hearst was part of a longer lineage of true crime. We'll look at what explains the enduring appeal of the genre. And how true crime can be both a force for good and ill. Our conversation is next. American scandal is sponsored by a new limited series on Hulu, welcome to chippendales. Starring Kumail Nanjiani, Murray Bartlett, annaleigh Ashford, and Juliette Lewis. It's inspired by the dark true events behind the founding of the chippendales male strip club empire and how it all took a sinister turn with multiple murders. There's so much more to this story than just a male strip club. There is partying, there's greed, and then there's murder. And it's all inspired by true events down to the nitty Gritty call to the FBI murder plot. So if you need a new show to get into, this is the one. Welcome to chippendales, has it all. Be sure to check out welcome to chippendales, now streaming only on Hulu. American scandal is sponsored by audible. If you're like most adults, you have chores to do. Commutes to make, waiting rooms to wait in, and time to yourself, you crave. I do too, but I make the most of all of them by listening with audible. Titles like confidence man by Maggie haberman, and like all audible members, I get one credit every month, good for any one of the many classics, bestsellers, and new releases regardless of price to keep forever. Let audible help you discover new ways to laugh, be inspired or be entertained. New members can try it free for 30 days, visit audible dot com slash AS or text AS to 505 hundred. That's audible dot com slash AS or text AS to 505 hundred to try audible free for 30 days. Audible dot com slash

Coming up next