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Margot Adler: the Pacifica radio years

NPR reports that one of its most beloved and distinguished correspondents, Margot Adler, has died at age 68 after a struggle with cancer.

The NPR remembrance observes that Adler shaped “what we would call the NPR sound today: human, curious, conversational.” It should be noted that prior to her joining NPR, she was a mainstay at the Pacifica radio network in the 1970s. Many of her interviews and commentaries from those years can be found at the Pacifica Archives. These include conversations with Joseph Cambpell and I.F. Stone, and her explorations of Paganism and witchcraft.


Born in Little Rock, Arkansas, Adler was the granddaughter of the famous psychiatrist and associate of Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler. She did most of her work with Pacifica at WBAI-FM in New York City, and joined NPR in 1979. The photograph on the right identifies the three individuals as “Author and Druidic priest Isaac Bonewits, author, Wiccan priestess, journalist, and radio presenter Margot Adler, and artist, hacker, and radio presenter Rob Vincent at the 2004 Pagan Pride celebration in Battery Park, New York City.”


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2 Responses to Margot Adler: the Pacifica radio years

  1. Jerry Drawhorn August 1, 2014 at 9:21 pm #

    An interesting sidelight.

    Margot participated in the 1965 Freedom Marches in Mississippi and was interviewed by a KZSU-Stanford newsperson that was sent of as a group of about a dozen several KZSU student volunteers to document and develop news reports back to the student-run station.

    Over 300 hours of recordings were made and are now transcribed and the tapes digitized at the Stanford library collections. This important record of the meetings, thoughts, motives, reactions both before and after the major events, the speeches, the debates between the groups…is probably the most extensive sound record of any social movement that exists. And it was all done by students from a college radio station!

    Here’s the interview with Margot:

  2. Rob Vincent September 27, 2015 at 5:53 pm #

    Thank you for this post. That’s my photo of Margot Adler, Isaac Bonewits, and myself.

    Margot Adler was an incredible inspiration to me, on professional levels as a radio broadcaster and writer as well as on personal and spiritual levels. I’ll always treasure the all-too-few opportunities I had to speak with her.

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