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Project aims to spark conversation between Alabamians with differing political views

Gabby Dance

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Birmingham’s NPR station, WBHM, is one of six stations in the nation that was chosen to participate in One Small Step, a project that pairs people of differing political beliefs to discuss their backgrounds in hopes of finding common ground.

The station, which is a member-supported service of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, is currently searching for liberal and conservative Alabamians to participate in the project.

The conversations will be guided by open-ended questions about the participants’ lives and opinions. The goal is to spark a civil discussion that could help the two people understand each other’s’ viewpoints.

All conversations from the project will be recorded and preserved in the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress.

Applications for the project are currently online. WBHM will review applicants’ answers on the application to match them with a partner with differing political views.

Conversations are expected to be free-flowing, but participants will be provided with suggested questions and topics to guide them through the session.

Interviews will be approximately 40 minutes long, with the entire process taking one hour.

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The project was launched by StoryCorps, a national nonprofit organization that aims to preserve and share humanity’s stories. The project holds weekly broadcasts on NPR’s “Morning Edition.”

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