Feminist sociologist and gender researcher Michael Kimmel talks about the “aggrieved entitlement” of so many white men in America. His book is Angry White Men: American Masculinity at the End of an Era. Then, we look at the rise of rape culture in America with Kate Harding. Her book is Asking For It: The Alarming Rise of Rape Culture–and What We Can Do About It. Continue reading
Lesléa Newman talks about her latest book of poetry, I Carry My Mother (Headmistress Press, 2015). The elegiac volume is composed of poems chronicling her mother’s last illness and dying, as well as her own grief.
Then, poet Martine Bellen reads from and discusses her new collection, This Amazing Cage of Light: New And Selected Poems (Spuyten Duyvil Press, 2015). Inspired by myth, history and everyday life, her evocative poems explore identity and connection. Continue reading
Michael Golding talks about A Poet of the Invisible World, his stunning new novel set in 13th century Persia. This fable explores the spiritual path taken by its main character, a Sufi poet with four ears.
Then, Robin Cook tells us about his new medical thriller, Host. It’s about what happens when medical research into the newest class of drugs — biologics — intersects with a greed-driven medical system. Continue reading
Dale Russakoff talks about her acclaimed new book, The Prize: Who’s in Charge of America’s Schools. It’s about the ambitious plan hatched by Cory Booker, Chris Christie and Mark Zuckerberg to reform Newark’s schools from the top down.
Then, Kristina Rizga tells the inspiring story of an inner city high school that’s changing students’ lives. Her book is Mission High: One School, How Experts Tried to Fail It, and the Students and Teachers Who Made It Triumph. Continue reading
Into the Mind Field
Ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee: Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee.
—Job 12:7–8, King James Version
Another big group of dolphins had just surfaced alongside our moving vessel—leaping and splashing and calling mysteriously back and forth in their squeally, whistly way, with many babies swift alongside their mothers. And this time, confined to just the surface of such deep and lovely lives, I was becoming unsatisfied. I wanted to know what they were experiencing, and why to us they feel so compelling and so—close. This time I allowed myself to ask them the question that is forbidden fruit: Who are you? Science usually steers firmly from questions about the inner lives of animals. Surely they have inner lives of some sort. But like a child who is admonished that what they really want to ask is impolite, a young scientist is taught that the animal mind—if there is such—is unknowable. Permissible questions are “it” questions: about where it lives, what it eats, what it does when danger threatens, how it breeds. But always forbidden is the one question that might open the door: Who? Continue reading
We talk with Joyce Carol Oates about her wonderful new memoir, The Lost Landscape: A Writer’s Coming of Age (Harper Collins). It tells the story of her coming of age as a writer, from her childhood in rural western New York state until her launching as a celebrated novelist.
We spend the hour talking with journalist Joel K. Bourne, Jr. about population, the threat of famine and new ways to prevent it. His book is The End of Plenty: The Race To Feed A Crowded World. Continue reading
Then, Ta-Nehisi Coates just received a MacArthur “genius” fellowship. We re-air our 2008 interview with him about his memoir, The Beautiful Struggle.
Wendell Stevenson talks about her book, Circling The Square: Voice From The Egyptian Revolution (Harper Collins, August 2015.) Then we re-air our 2011 interview with Marina Sitrin about Occupy Wall Street.
Marcel Theroux talks about his new novel Strange Bodies. It’s a fantastic multi-genre romp — part sci-fi, part thriller, part disquisition on literary immortality. And then we pivot to the renaissance in radio storytelling, talking with cartoonist Jessica Abel about her graphic book, Out On The Wire: The Storytelling Secrets of the New Masters of Radio.
Lou Ureneck talks about his book, The Great Fire. It tells the story of the burning of Smyrna by the Turks and the rescue of thousands of civilians by an American. We also talk with British novelist Lissa Evans about her dark comedy Crooked Heart, set in wartime London. It’s about a young refugee from the Blitz and his rescuer, a small time con artist. Continue reading
Then, we re-air portions of our 2011 interview with Bacigalupi about his sci fi novel for young adults, Shipbreaker. Also set in the climate-changed world of the near future, it takes place in Florida in a time of sea level rise. Continue reading
Journalist Scott Sherman talks about the fight to save the New York Public Library. His book is Patience and Fortitude: Power, Real Estate, and the Fight to Save a Public Library (Melville House, 2015). Then, we air part of our 2014 interview with Eric Alterman about his book Inequality And One City: Bill de Blasio and the New York Experiment. Continue reading
J.A. Mills talks about her book, Blood of the Tiger: A Story about Conspiracy, Greed, and the Battle to Save A Magnificent Species. It’s about how the survival of tigers in the wild are threatened by tiger farms in China. Then, Martin Windrow tells us about his memoir of a unique human/avian friendship, The Owl Who Liked Sitting on Caesar. Continue reading