Kat Chow

Kat Chow is a journalist covering race, ethnicity, and culture for NPR's new Code Switch team. In this role, Chow is responsible for reporting and telling stories using social media, sparking conversations online, and blogging.

Prior to coming to NPR, Chow worked with WGBH in Boston and was a reporting fellow for The Cambodia Daily, an English-language newspaper in Phnom Penh.

While a student at the University of Washington in Seattle, Chow was a founding member of a newsmagazine television show and freelanced for the Seattle Weekly. She also interned with the Seattle Times and worked on NBC's Winter Olympics coverage in Vancouver, B.C. You can find her tweeting away for Code Switch at @NPRCodeSwitch, and sharing her thoughts at @katchow.

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7:54am

Thu December 18, 2014
Monkey See

The Many Rabbit Holes (Or Should We Say Labyrinths) Of Serial

Originally published on Thu December 18, 2014 5:01 pm

Sarah Koenig and producer Dana Chivvis in the studio.
Elise Bergerson Serial

2:22pm

Tue December 2, 2014
Code Switch

A Brief History Of Racial Protest In Sports

Members of the St. Louis Rams raise their arms in a "hands up, don't shoot" pose as they walk onto the field before an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders.
L.G. Patterson AP

On Sunday, five St. Louis Rams players jogged onto the field with their arms raised by their heads, a stream of fog behind them: hands up, don't shoot.

The players — Tavon Austin, Kenny Britt, Jared Cook, Chris Givens and Stedman Bailey — were invoking the gesture that's been widely used in protesting the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson. This followed the announcement that a grand jury would not indict Wilson in Brown's death, and the release of a hefty batch of evidence shown to the jury by St. Louis prosecutor Robert McCullough.

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3:51am

Thu November 27, 2014
Code Switch

Stories Of Your First Thanksgiving In The U.S.

Originally published on Thu November 27, 2014 12:12 pm

We don't endorse using a trident to carve your turkey.
floodllama Flickr

This past week, we called for stories about your first Thanksgiving in the United States. Who'd you spend it with? Where were you coming from? What'd you eat? What'd you think of it? we wondered.

And many of the stories we heard from you were about food: You had issues roasting the turkey properly. Your mom found, um, a creative solution to making your bird golden-brown. You ate a lot of different alternative Thanksgiving meals. Your stories were goofy and weird, but most of them made us smile. Here are some of them:

Leticia Ortiz

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8:57am

Wed November 26, 2014
Code Switch

In Ferguson, A Trove Of Evidence — But No Trial

Originally published on Wed November 26, 2014 12:23 pm

A photo of officer Darren Wilson released as part of evidence shown before the grand jury.
CBS News

On Monday night, St. Louis County prosecutor Robert McCulloch delivered the news that police officer Darren Wilson would not be indicted in the shooting death of Michael Brown. And in an unusual move, the announcement was accompanied by the release of an enormous batch of evidence presented to the grand jury — including much-talked-about photos of Wilson, taken after he shot and killed Brown.

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2:38pm

Sun November 23, 2014
Code Switch

Running Late? Nah, Just On 'CPT'

Originally published on Mon November 24, 2014 9:19 am

Almost there! Always delayed.
iStockphoto

In our semi-regular Word Watch feature, we take a look at a word or phrase that has caught our attention, whether for its history, usage, etymology, or just because it has an interesting story.

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7:02pm

Tue November 18, 2014
Code Switch

Ex-Georgia Gov. Carl Sanders, Racial Moderate In A Split South, Dies

Originally published on Tue November 18, 2014 9:26 pm

Former Georgia Gov. Carl Sanders shakes hands with members of the crowd at a campaign event leading up to a runoff against Jimmy Carter for the Democratic nomination for Governor in Atlanta.
AP

Carl E. Sanders, who served as governor of Georgia from 1963 to 1967 and is credited with bringing about more racial integration to the state, died in Atlanta on Sunday. He was 89.

Sanders was considered to be a Southern moderate, and fought to create a "New South." His politics set him apart from lawmakers who tried to keep public schools and facilities segregated.

In his inaugural address in January 1963, Sanders said:

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12:19pm

Tue November 18, 2014
Code Switch

The Many Stories Behind Double-Eyelid Surgery

Originally published on Fri November 21, 2014 1:23 pm

Double eyelids, single eyelids — ” why do we change our eyes, or keep them the way they are?
Claire O'Neill/NPR

This is the second half of a look at the history and motivations behind the Asian blepharoplasty, popularly known as "double-eyelid surgery." On Monday, we dug into its background and some of its history. Today, we'll explore the "why."

A lot of assumptions are made about why people undergo double-eyelid surgery. Assumptions like: They wanted to look more white, or they wanted to look less Asian.

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11:18am

Mon November 17, 2014
Code Switch

Is Beauty In The Eye(Lid) Of The Beholder?

Originally published on Fri November 21, 2014 1:25 pm

A plastic surgeon performs a double-eyelid surgery on a patient at the BK Clinic in Seoul in August 2007.
Han Jae-Ho Reuters/Landov

This is part one of a two-part series looking at the history and motivations behind the Asian blepharoplasty, popularly known as "double-eyelid surgery." Find part two here.

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7:50am

Thu September 18, 2014
Race

Jacqueline Woodson On Being A 'Brown Girl' Who Dreams

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 2:37 pm

Author Jacqueline Woodson reads from her newest novel, Sept. 15.
Kat Chow NPR

The first time author Jacqueline Woodson says she really understood poetry — and loved it — was after reading Langston Hughes in elementary school.

"Until then, I thought it was some code that older white people used to speak to each other. I didn't know what was going on with the line breaks and the words," Woodson recalls. "Once the floodgates opened, they opened."

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5:27am

Sun September 14, 2014
Code Switch

Overthinking It: Using Food As A Racial Metaphor

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 2:02 pm

This is a Twinkie.
Christian Cable Flickr

In February, a state-run media outlet in China mocked Gary Locke, who was signing off as U.S. ambassador to that country. "Gary Locke is a U.S.-born, third-generation Chinese-American, and his being a banana — 'yellow skin and white heart' — became an advantage for Obama's foreign policy,' " the editorial read.

Years ago, a (possibly apocryphal) story circulated about Democratic activists throwing Oreos at Michael Steele, the black former head of the Republican party.

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