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Big Cities

The Man on Mount Vesuvius

Napoli is a big city in a very special location: it lies directly at the foot of an active volcano. The last time Mount Vesuvius erupted was in 1944 but it could do so again in the future. Although the city has developed a security system and a team of vulcanologists work day and night to monitor the volcano the risk can’t be totally eliminated completely. Napoli residents have learned to live with it and are known for their philosophical approach to life. Raffaele Matrone, “the man on Mount Vesuvius,” is indeed a philosopher. The eloquent and knowledgeable docent has spent his life accompanying visitors from all over the world as they ascend Vesuvius. Matrone has taken over his father’s job, working at the volcano since his childhood years. He says he is “in love” with the mountain.  

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Full Episodes
Big Cities: Seven
Episode
26:46
Big Cities

E10: Traffic Alternative

Urban planners and average citizens in Thailand and Bogota are seeking solutions to ease congestion in their crowded cities.
Episode 110
Wetlands in Argentina
Episode
25:41
Big Cities

E9: Living With Water

Great water demands require greater water solutions to keep big cities afloat.
Episode 109
Big Cities: Mount Vesuvius
Episode
26:46
Big Cities

E8: Historical Preservation

From the depths of a volcano to the density of a forest, people around the world are preserving natural wonders in their home cities.
Episode 108
Big Cities: Q’eswachaka
Episode
26:46
Big Cities

E7: Traditional Practices

Looking back to traditional practices can help us find modern solutions to various environmental and social issues of city life.
Episode 107
Big Cities: Rice & Roses
Episode
26:45
Big Cities

E6: Helping Hands

Many people enjoy the anonymity found in city living, but this also creates dangers for more vulnerable people like the homeless and elderly.
Episode 106
Big Cities: Colin Boyd Shafer
Episode
26:46
Big Cities

Episode 5: Immigrant Support Systems

Big cities attract dreamers from all over the world. This episode features the people building communities of inclusion for immigrants.
Episode 105
Still from QLM's "The Vertical Village"
Episode
26:16
Big Cities

Episode 4: Cooperative Housing

Many people are ditching the confines of traditional apartment life and opting for communal living instead.
Episode 104
La Playita - Buenaventura
Episode
26:16
Big Cities

Episode 3: Bringing Life to Public Spaces

Two groups strive to reinvigorate public spaces amid blocky apartment structures and rigid urban development.
Episode 103
Mariachis in Boyle Heights
Episode
25:46
Big Cities

E2: Heart of the City

The heart of many large cities lies in their historic neighborhoods but across the world, the cultural vitality of these neighborhoods is threatened by the forces of gentrification and aging infrastructure. Hear from the people of Boyle Heights in Los Angeles and the Old Quarter in Hanoi, Vietnam as they work to improve and preserve their communities.
Episode 102
Favela Organica
Episode
26:46
Big Cities

E1: Sustainable Urban Farming

Maintaining a sustainable way of life through organic farming is possible — even in big cities.
Episode 101
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