Great Lengths

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Monday, July 19, 2010

Historian William Jelani Cobb looks at how Barack Obama won the Democratic nomination without the support of much of the established black leadership. He argues that the term "postracial" is harmful and inaccurate. Then, one man discusses the struggles he and his estranged cousin went through in order to get a kidney transplant. Also, music journalist Rob Sheffield talks about coming of age in the era of bad hair and Duran Duran. Novelist Robin Oliviera describes her new book. Plus, we'll talk to Knopf's Sonny Mehta and Paul Bogaards as they discuss why the posthumous translations of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy has been such a runaway success.

Barack Obama and the Paradox of Progress

Historian William Jelani Cobb looks at the 2008 election of Barack Obama—who won the Democratic nomination even though old-line civil rights leaders—Jesse Jackson, John Lewis, Andrew Young—all openly supported Hillary Clinton. In The Substance of Hope: Barack Obama and the Paradox of Progress, Cobb examines America's changing political and social landscape, and a new generation of voters with priorities not shaped by the legacy of Jim Crow.

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Searching for a New Kidney

Daniel Asa Rose discusses the lengths he and his cousin Larry Feldman went to in order to get a kidney transplant. In Larry’s Kidney, Rose tells the story of helping his black-sheep cousin, who he hadn’t spoken to in 15 years, go to China and secure a kidney transplant, even though Chinese law forbids transplants to Westerners.

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Talking to Girls About Duran Duran

Music journalist Rob Sheffield discusses coming of age in the 1980s, the years of MTV and John Hughes movies, the era of big dreams and bigger shoulder pads. Talking to Girls About Duran Duran: One Young Man’s Quest for True Love and a Cooler Haircut is his memoir of stumbling into adulthood.

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My Name Is Mary Sutter

Robin Oliveira discusses her first novel, about a young woman's struggle to become a doctor during the Civil War, My Name Is Mary Sutter. Mary Sutter is a head¬strong midwife from Albany, New York, who dreams of becoming a surgeon. Determined to overcome the prejudices against women in medicine, she goes to Washington, D.C. to help tend the Civil War wounded.

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Stieg Larsson’s Trilogy

It is unprecedented for a series of posthumous works in translation to reach number one around the world, but that’s what’s happened with Stieg Larsson’s trilogy The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s NestSonny Mehta, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group and Stieg Larsson’s editor and publisher in America, and Paul Bogaards Executive Vice President and Executive Director of Publicity for Knopf Doubleday, discuss the publication, success, and marketing of Stieg Larsson’s books.

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Leonard's Questions: Rob Sheffield

Rob Sheffield came on The Leonard Lopate Show to discuss his favorite books, music and more!


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