Latest Blog Posts

  • The Whole World is Watching

    Announcing our new weekly video series, The Whole World is Watching Media Burn is expanding on our successful online video productions by creating a new weekly mini-documentary series The Whole World Is Watching. We will harness the power of historical videos to illuminate contemporary culture and politics. It will be free to worldwide audiences, as always. THE WHOLE WORLD IS WATCHING The stories we tell about the world and our country’s past matter. Facts matter. History is being rewritten at … Continue reading

  • Remembering Comedian and Activist Dick Gregory (1932-2017)

    Remembering Comedian and Activist Dick Gregory (1932-2017)

    Dick Gregory died this past Sunday at the age of 84. In 1961, he became the first black comedian in the United States to achieve crossover success with white audiences. After three years as the emcee at the black-owned Roberts Show Club in Chicago, Hugh Hefner hired Gregory as a last-minute sub at the Playboy Club, propelling him into the national spotlight. From the start of his career, Dick Gregory was active in the civil rights movement. He used his … Continue reading


New Videos

  • 72 Years After Hiroshima and Nagasaki, The Threat of Nuclear War Continues

    72 Years After Hiroshima and Nagasaki, The Threat of Nuclear War Continues

    The Brutality of Nuclear War and Humanity’s Struggles Against It Seventy-two years ago this month, the United States dropped atomic bombs on the people of Nagasaki and Hiroshima, killings hundreds of thousands and expanding the horizon of humanity’s capacity for destruction. Since the inception of nuclear weapons, individuals and social movements have fought to curtail the threat of nuclear war and denounce the inhumanity and absurdity of living under the constant threat of total annihilation. Especially now, as world leaders … Continue reading

  • [WTTW Channel 11 35th Anniversary Celebration]

    0:02 Opening of WTTW Chicago. Title screen introducing this segment as a celebration of the station’s 35th Anniversary Celebration. Clip of Mayor Richard J. Daley talking about the station at its opening. Historical footage of the station’s programming. Mark Russell talks about the station and his involvement with it. Short messages from famous programs and people that have appeared on and supported WTTW over the 35 years. 4:10 Footage of the anniversary kick-off party. Public celebration events celebrating Channel 11 … Continue reading

  • Happy 50th Birthday to the Chicago Picasso

    Happy 50th Birthday to the Chicago Picasso

    Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Chicago Picasso In 1967, Mayor Richard J. Daley stood in the courtyard of the Chicago Civic Center and unveiled a fifty-foot tall metal structure, a public art piece designed by Pablo Picasso and given to the people of Chicago. While initially met with scorn and confusion, the sculpture has, over the years, become an iconic and admired feature of downtown Chicago. This collection of clips taken from the Media Burn Archive features Studs Terkel, … Continue reading

  • Milly’s Orchid Show 30th anniversary July 29th

    Milly’s Orchid Show 30th anniversary July 29th

    Three Decades of Cutting-Edge Cabaret Milly May Smithy is the alter ego of performer and musician Brigid Murphy. Since 1987, Murphy, as Milly, has hosted Milly’s Orchid Show, a variety show featuring an eclectic blend of music, dance, comedy and high art. The showcase introduced audiences in Chicago and around the country to performers including the Blue Man Group, David Sedaris, Emo Philips, and Nora Dunn. This Saturday, July 29, Milly’s Orchid Show will be making its return to Park … Continue reading

  • [The Fight Over Faith]

    0:00 Color bars. Cut to black. 3:12 CNN special, “The Fight Over Faith,” begins. Carol Marin reports on conflict within the Evangelical Christian church. Marin explains that different sects within the religion are fighting against each other over interpretations of the bible, even leading to official accusations of heresy within presbyterian churches. Interpretation concerning sexuality is one of the most relevant divergences between these groups. Marin speaks with people from different sects. 12:40 Cut to black. Segment returns. Marin defines … Continue reading

  • [Keeping the Faith]

    0:02 Color bars. Cut to black. Video information screen. 1:24 On screen text about the 2002 sexual scandal in the Catholic church. Several comments from members of the church about the jokes and rumors of pedophilia within the Catholic church. Carol Marin reports on the men being trained at Mt. St. Mary Seminary of the West in Cincinnati, Ohio, beginning by asking them why they would want to become priests in a time of scandal. 4:50 Marin talks about what … Continue reading

  • [Mosely Tape]

    0:15 The Channel 5 news opens with a report on the high cost of dealing with drug abuse for law enforcement. Carol Marin narrates this special, “The High Cost of Getting High.” She talks about current operations and the history of drug trafficking in Chicago. She cites statistics about the costs to the city of police, jails, courts, and other expenses for drug related crimes. 5:00 They talk with women in Cook County jail for drug related crimes. They talk … Continue reading

  • [As Time Passes]

    0:08 Color bars. “As Time Passes” title screen. 1:20 “As Time Passes,” narrated by Carol Marin, a Channel 5 news special, begins. This special covers survivors of urban violence, including rape, and gun violence. They begin by talking with a woman who was raped, Patsy Evans, and a man, Ricky Selenas, shot in a drive-by that paralyzed him from the waist down. The woman talks about how the trauma has affected her life. 8:55 Cut to black. Color bars and … Continue reading