Wave header image graphic banner
Public Radio For Eastern North Carolina 89.3 WTEB New Bern 88.5 WZNB New Bern 91.5 WBJD Atlantic Beach 90.3 WKNS Kinston 88.1 W201AO Greenville 88.5 WHYC Swan Quarter
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
US

In Black And White: Chess’ Surging Pandemic Popularity (Rebroadcast)

Grandmaster chess player Garry Kasparov makes a move in a match against grandmaster Fabiano Caruana during the final day of the Grand Chess Tour at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center in St. Louis.
Grandmaster chess player Garry Kasparov makes a move in a match against grandmaster Fabiano Caruana during the final day of the Grand Chess Tour at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center in St. Louis.

Maybe you’re wondering whether we’re all pawns. Or maybe you’re hoping for the moment coronavirus gets placed in checkmate. Maybe you just want us to stop talking about chess this way.

Fine, we’ll chill and get back to your regularly scheduled text.

What is true is that people are looking for all sorts of diversions in the midst of the pandemic. TV shows, movies, video games, cooking, baking and many more indoor activities are all popular distractions. But chess in particular is enjoying a culture-fueled surge in popularity.

Both the pandemic and new Netflix mini-series “The Queen’s Gambit” have led to a boost in the game’s reach. There’s been a huge increase in board sales and Twitch streamers playing the game are also attracting viewers.

How is a very old game adapting to the 21st century? And is its community of enthusiasts changing alongside it?

 

Copyright 2020 WAMU 88.5

US
Kaity Kline