#49 : January 10, 1997
Stories about the animalness of animals, the irreducible ways in which they are not human.
#48 : January 3, 1997
Kitty Felde shows a side of the Yugoslav War Crimes Trials that hasn't been discussed anywhere: a portrait of Americans at the International Tribunal. And other stories.
#47 : December 20, 1996
Stories about the intersection of Christmas and retail, including David Sedaris's story "Santaland Diaries," which was first broadcast on NPR's Morning Edition many years ago in a much shorter version.
#46 : December 13, 1996
Though being gay no longer has much of a stigma in some parts of the country, being a sissy still does — even among gay men. In this show we have a number of surprising and unusual stories of sissies, their families, and why people still get so upset about them.
#45 : December 6, 1996
Four stories about people struggling at the fringes of our nation's media/music/infotainment industry.
#44 : November 29, 1996
In the midst of the five biggest poultry-consumption weeks of the year—the five weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas, when Americans consume one-fourth of all the turkey they eat in a year—This American Life presents stories about turkeys, chickens, ducks, and fowl of all kinds.
#43 : November 22, 1996
Inspired by a spate of new Chicago stage adaptations of the Faust story, This American Life brings you stories of people who made a deal with the devil.
#42 : November 15, 1996
Three stories of people trying to forget the past and move on.
#41 : November 8, 1996
More stories of the election you can't hear anywhere else.
#40 : November 1, 1996
Stories from acclaimed storyteller Spalding Gray and others.
#39 : October 25, 1996
This week: A show for Halloween. Stories of things that are supposed to be scary, but aren't.
#38 : October 11, 1996
Simulated worlds, Civil war reenactments, wax museums, simulated coal mines, fake ethnic restaurants, an ersatz Medieval castle and other re-created worlds that thrive all across America. (4 minutes)
#37 : September 27, 1996
Radio producer Scott Carrier quit his job at a low moment in his life. His wife left him and took the kids. And he got a job interviewing schizophrenics for some medical researchers. After doing it a while, he began to wonder if he was a schizophrenic himself. And more stories.
#36 : September 20, 1996
Host Ira Glass and playwright David Hauptschein took out advertisements in Chicago inviting people to come to a small theater with letters they've received, sent or found.
#35 : September 6, 1996
Evocative, funny, emotional stories collected over the last few months that haven't fit into any of our regular "theme" shows.
#34 : August 30, 1996
Unusual stories from the 1996 Democratic Convention in Chicago, with scenes and moments not documented elsewhere.
#33 : August 23, 1996
Host Ira Glass spent a Saturday night — from 9:00 p.m. until dawn the next morning — at one of the most frenetic, joyous, efficient, angry, boisterous hot dog stands in the nation: Chicago's own Wiener Circle.
#32 : August 16, 1996
Unusual stories about day-to-day life at the Republican Convention.
#31 : August 9, 1996
Stories of people whose lives are transformed by music.
#30 : July 26, 1996
Stories of obsession and compulsion. What happens when a little idea starts to control you. Co-hosted by Paul Tough.
#29 : July 19, 1996
Unusual perspectives on the presumptive Republican nominee.
#28 : July 12, 1996
Writer David Sedaris recalls the days when his mother and sister played armchair detective — until a very odd crime wave hit within their own home. Plus, host Ira Glass goes out on surveillance with a real-life private eye.
#27 : June 21, 1996
Stories about kids being mean to each other... including a mysterious handbook for bullies, a surprising experiment conducted by a teacher who wants to make kids be nice, and a story of youthful backstabbing told by David Sedaris.
#26 : June 14, 1996
Ira's own father Barry Glass co-hosts this special father's day edition of the show.
#25 : June 7, 1996
A set of documentary stories, radio essays and monologues about basketball, the Chicago Bulls, and their grip on Chicagoans' hearts and lives during the NBA Playoffs.
#24 : May 24, 1996
Stories of girls who have to figure out how they're going to act when the ground rules are constantly shifting.
#23 : May 10, 1996
Stories of the people who fall for a life in the theater.
#22 : May 3, 1996
Stories of the difficult relationships between parents and their grown children, including two long stories from Sandra Tsing Loh about her father.
#21 : April 26, 1996
A show about something most people have gone through. Friends get together to start a business, start a church, do political action together. And after a while, they start fighting and split up. We hear three true stories.
#20 : April 19, 1996
Stories of hero worship, of people admiring someone from afar, and trying to get closer to them.