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McKinsey and Capitalism; Joe Berlinger on Hank Paulson; Jonathan Lethem on His New Novel; Please Explain

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Friday, September 13, 2013

Financial journalist Duff McDonald explains how the consulting firm McKinsey & Company has shaped American business since 1926. Filmmaker Joe Berlinger on his new documentary about how former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson steered the economy through the financial meltdown 5 years ago. Jonathan Lethem talks about his latest novel, Dissident Gardens. Plus, during this Jewish holiday season, this week’s Please Explain is all about Yiddish!

McKinsey and American Business

Founded in 1926, McKinsey consultants have brought change to the nation’s best organizations, remapped the power structure within the White House, and even revo­lutionized business schools. Financial journalist Duff McDonald shows how McKinsey hasinfluenced the course of American capitalism. In The Firm: The Story of McKinsey and Its Secret Influence on American Business he looks at how McKinsey helped invent most of the tools of modern management, it's successes, and its failures.

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“Hank: 5 Years from the Brink”

Joe Berlinger, director of the documentary “Hank: 5 Years from the Brink,” a portrait of Hank Paulson, Secretary of the Treasury and former CEO of Goldman Sachs. For three weeks in September 2008, Paulson was the one person charged with preventing the collapse of the U.S. economy, and he tells how he worked to persuade banks, Congress, and presidential candidates to sign off on nearly $1 trillion in bailouts—even as he found the behavior that led to the crisis, and the bailouts themselves, morally reprehensible. “Hank: 5 Years from the Brink” is available exclusively on Netflix September 16.

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Jonathan Lethem's Dissident Gardens

Jonathan Lethem discusses his new novel, Dissident Gardens, an epic yet intimate family saga about three generations of all-American radicals that was inspired by his own family.

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Please Explain: Yiddish

Chutzpah, glitch, klutz, schlep, and tchotchke are all Yiddish words that have entered into everyday usage. On this week’s Please Explain, we’ll find out all about the Yiddish language—where it comes from, how it’s influenced our culture, and its resurgence.

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Guest Picks: Jonathan Lethem

Jonathan Lethem was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about his latest novel, Dissident Gardens. He also told us he's a fan of Molly Ringwald movies. Find out what else Jonathan Lethem likes!

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