The Masters

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Friday, December 02, 2011

Alan Rickman (center) and company in a scene from "Seminar" on Broadway at the Golden Theater (Jeremy Daniel)

Hamish Linklater, Lily Rabe, and Alan Rickman discuss “Seminar,” Theresa Rebeck’s new comedy about the rigors of writing. Erica Heller discusses growing up with her famous father, Joseph Heller. Rosamund Barlett tells us about her new biography of Leo Tolstoy. And our latest Please Explain is all about how the brains of teenagers work!

“Seminar” with Lily Rabe, Hamish Linklater, and Alan Rickman

Lily Rabe, Hamish Linklater, and Alan Rickman discuss “Seminar,” a new comedy by Peabody Award winner Theresa Rebeck. In the play, four aspiring young novelists sign up for private writing classes with an international literary figure. Under his brilliant and unorthodox instruction, some thrive and others flounder. It’s playing at The Golden Theatre.

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Life with Joseph Heller

Erica Heller tells about growing up with her iconic father, Joseph Heller, and the rest of her family, which could be by turns caring, infuriating, and exasperating, and anything but dull. Her memoir, Yossarian Slept Here: When Joseph Heller Was Dad, the Apthorp Was Home, and Life Was a Catch-22, details the Hellers’ charmed but turbulent lives.

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Tolstoy: A Russian Life

Rosamund Bartlett talks about the life and legacy of Leo Tolstoy. At the time of his death, he was the most famous man in Russia, with a growing international following, and more revered than the tsar. Bartlett’s biography, Tolstoy: A Russian Life is a portrait of the brilliant, maddening, and contrary man who made a lasting impression on literature and culture.

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Please Explain: Teenagers' Brains

In October, neuroscientists Sandra Aamodt and Sam Wang were on Please Explain to discuss how a young children’s brains develop. And this week they return to discuss the brains of adolescents and teenagers—from sleep problems, gender differences, behavior issues, learning disabilities, and hormones. They investigate myths about brain development and sort through the factors that matter—and those that don’t—in brain development from childhood to college. They’re the co-authors of Welcome to Your Child's Brain: How the Mind Grows from Conception to College.

How well do you know your child's brain? Take this quiz!

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In Ruth Reichl's Kitchen, in the Wall Street Journal

Ruth Reichl, author of our December Leonard Lopate Show Book Club pick Comfort Me with Apples, invited the Wall Street Journal into her upstate kitchen. She spoke about her custom-designed kitchen, her favorite dishes to make for friends, and the meal that changed her life. Read the article here.

Tune in Monday at 12:30 to hear Ruth Reichl on the Leonard Lopate Show. Read the book and submit your questions!


Quiz: How Well Do You Know Your Child’s Brain

From Sandra Aamodt and Sam Wang’s book Welcome to Your Child’s Brain: How the Mind Grows from Conception to College, published by Bloomsbury. They were on Please Explain: Children's Brains on Friday, October 14, and we invited them back for Please Explain: The Teenage Brain, Friday, December 2.


 1) Which of the following is a good way to get your child to eat his spinach?

            a. Cover the spinach with melted cheese

            b. Start the meal with a few bites of dessert

            c. Feed him with soy-based formula as an infant

            d. All of the above

            e. None of the above


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