Barry Yeoman

Barry Yeoman is a freelance journalist living in Durham. His work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Nation, The American Prospect, and Audubon Magazine, among other publications.

ARTICLES BY Barry Yeoman

  • Illustration of Titi Shodiya and Zakaiya Whatley who host the Dope Labs podcast
    June 28, 2021
    When Titi Shodiya and Zakiya Whatley launched the science podcast Dope Labs, they started not by talking about science, but instead by telling the story of their friendship. “Zakiya and I met in grad school,” Shodiya Ph.D. ’15, a materials scientist and engineer, told listeners. “It was a tough time, to say the least. And in our pursuit to get the hell out of there, we became cousins. You know how Black folks do. She’s my play cousin.”
  • Antonello Silverini illustration of a butcher and a bull
    March 19, 2021
    The defendant’s name was Mr. Scrub Bull. He entered Magistrate James McElroy Jameson’s makeshift courtroom in Pickens County, South Carolina, walking on four legs and escorted by rural and town policemen. There he stood, surely bewildered, as a court officer read the bill of indictments.
  • February 26, 2020
    When a Duke-led research team won a $300 million federal grant to help develop an AIDS vaccine in 2005, the global situation was looking grim.
  • June 11, 2018
    The honor of pressing the button fell to Matthias Gromeier. The button activated a pump that was connected to a syringe containing a genetically modified form of poliovirus, infused in a liquid. Once Gromeier initiated the process, the infusion would travel through a long plastic tube and into a small hole drilled into twenty-one-year-old Stephanie Lipscomb’s skull.
  • Deanna Adkins in the lobby of Duke Children's Hospital. Before 2014, the endocrinologist had never treated gender dysphoria.
    February 2, 2018
    Atom Edwards is a high-school junior who carries himself with a confidence that not all his peers possess. The youngest of four siblings, he has a lanky frame and a hi-top fade that lightens at the tips like icing on a cupcake. He makes A’s and B’s; plays guitar, piano, and saxophone; and sits on the Teen Council at Duke’s Nasher Museum of Art. He counts his friends by the dozen.
  • From left: SoundPure owner Todd Atlas; Durham county commissioner Wendy Jacobs; Durham Hotel owner Daniel Robinson; Shoeboxed's Taylor Mingos; Jake Stauch of NeuroPlus; photographer/arts advocate Tim Walter; and Durham City Council member Jillian Johnson on The Durham Hotel's roof.
    December 14, 2016
    The evening begins with a local beer on the rooftop of The Durham Hotel. It’s breezy outside, and not yet dark, with a gibbous moon just starting to rise. Customers emerge from the elevator and ritually peer over the edge, taking in the aerial view of a downtown that ten years ago would have looked abandoned.
  • June 1, 2016
    CLICK. A video of R&B musician Jill Scott fills the screen. She’s belting out “Strange Fruit,” a ballad written in the 1930s to protest the lynchings—hangings and other mob violence—that were terrorizing African-American communities. “Black bodies swinging in the Southern breeze,” Scott sings, deep and throaty. “Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees.”
  • December 16, 2015
    Scientists have offered wide-ranging ideas about why being near the ocean brings us such calm. They include the negative ions found in ocean waves, which are believed to boost the mood chemical serotonin, and our evolutionary propensity to find safety in flat, unforested environments where predators can’t hide. Studies have linked swimming and other aquatic exercises to improved mood and sharper brain function.
  • December 11, 2015
    On a Sunday afternoon this past March, Wallace J. Nichols took out a cloth drawstring bag and distributed its contents: oversized glass marbles the color of a tropical sea. “Hang on tight to your blue marble,” the tousle-haired marine biologist told the room full of adults celebrating Creek Week at the Durham County Library. “Don’t let it roll. Don’t drop it. Don’t throw them at the speaker or eat them.”
  • November 14, 2013
    Art Pope J.D. '81 wants you to know that he did not buy North Carolina’s 2010 elections. “Depending on your perspective, I get far more credit and far more blame than I deserve,” says the Raleigh businessman, who in January 2013 became Governor Pat McCrory’s budget director.
  • Lacey Chylack/Chris Seward.
    November 14, 2013
    Under a moonless sky in the North Carolina mountains, a Democratic gubernatorial candidate named Terry Sanford stood on the steps of the Henderson County courthouse and made a proposal that seemed audacious for 1960. It had been a stinking hot May day, but the night was cooling rapidly, and 350 voters had shown up to hear this former FBI agent and World War II paratrooper describe his vision.
  • November 5, 2012
    On the first day of his marine conservation course this past January, Martin Smith told his eight undergraduates that they would play a game. One student would wait in the hallway. The other seven would stand around a conference table and go fishing.
  • Survey says: Genetic testing yielded unexpected results for both Yeoman and his dog, Scooter. Credit: Jared Lazarus
    November 30, 2010
    When we adopted Scooter in 2008, my partner and I were curious about the ancestry of our sleek five-month-old puppy. Clearly she was a Labrador retriever mix, as the Durham County animal shelter had labeled her. She possessed the classic Lab muzzle, along with a dense black coat and an eagerness to please. But what else was she?
  • Building a case: CEHI maps overlay demographic data, property-tax records, and health information to determine at-risk neighborhoods. In details from individual maps, left, more specific data emerge about households receiving public assistance (green), children under six living in poverty (purple), and racial breakdown of owners and renters (brown).
    October 1, 2010
    Last fall, Durham County health director Gayle Harris faced a thorny question: How do you get a confused and suspicious public inoculated against H1N1 influenza? The much-feared flu strain had already arrived in Durham, forcing Duke to cancel several summer youth camps. Nationwide, H1N1 had infected 22 million people, killing 3,900, according to estimates by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Still, persuading Durhamites to get vaccinated was proving tough.
  • November 30, 2009
  • November 30, 2009
     Tim Profeta M.E.M. '97, J.D. '97, director of Duke's Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, arrives one April morning at the Capitol Hill office of a Republican senator from the Midwest. He's here to discuss one of the most difficult issues facing Congress this year: how to slow the devastating pace of global warming.
  • October 1, 2009
    Reaching for the sky: Despite job-hunting disappointments, Conyers never gave up on his ch
  • Indomitable scholar: Kennington, shown here in front of the historic Alamance County Courthouse in Graham, North Carolina, embarked on her job search with dogged determination. Bill Bamberger
    October 1, 2009
    December 2008. For the past seven years, Kelly Kennington Ph.D. '09 has kept her mind planted firmly in the 1800s. As a doctoral candidate in Duke's history department, she has immersed herself in records from Missouri's St.
  • January 31, 2009
     (Note: On January 20, 2009, Kevin Martin stepped down as chair of the FCC to join the Aspen Institute in Maryland as a senior fellow. )If Kevin Martin, chair of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), was worried that the citizens of the Pacific Northwest were going to storm the podium where he was standing, his face never betrayed it.
  • Nature's way: Koehl's research combines biology and engineering to better understand the natural world; opposite, Caribbean spiny lobster, panulirus argus. Photos of Mimi Koehl by Jim Wilson '74 / Illustrations by Ippy Patterson
    October 1, 2008
     The week was not going well for rasta lobsta or for its creator, Mimi A.R. Koehl.
  • It takes all kinds: Like middle-schoolers everywhere, Durham Nativity School students can be serious or silly, depending on the day and the challenges they face. Barry Yeoman
    April 1, 2007
      As an August drizzle falls outside, thirty-one middle-schoolers sit at long tables in a North Carolina mountain lodge.
  • November 30, 2006
    Before she showed up at Duke's Morreene Road Pain Clinic last year, Christy Anderson had suffered through intense migraines for more than three decades. They hunkered down in her forehead for days at a time, making her feel as if someone had planted a suction machine behind her eyebrows. During the worst attacks, all the forty-six-year-old Anderson could do was lie in the dark, motionless, hoping not to throw up. Raising her two children became an exhausting burden.
  • Brooke: "Going to war is not unknown in my family" © Forrest Stuart MacCormack
    March 31, 2006
     Francis Brooke was still asleep in Baghdad's Mansour neighborhood when one of his houseboys came running in, shouting about a commotion on the street outside. It was 10:30 on a Thursday morning, and Brooke had spent the previous night with Ahmad Chalabi, head of the Iraqi National Congress.


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