Streams

The Long Road Ahead

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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

First up on the show: a look at Iraq's political scene in the four months since its elections. Then, Andrew Beahrs describes his quest to find Mark Twain’s favorite regional American dishes. Also, Ayelet Waldman talks about her latest novel, Red Hook Road. Plus a pair of linguists tell us about their work to record and save dying languages.

Iraq: The Impasse

Joost Hiltermann, contributor to the New York Review of Books and the Middle East and North Africa Deputy Program Director at the International Crisis Group, discusses Iraq's political climate in the four months since its elections and the fear of a Baath Party resurgence. His article "Iraq: The Impasse," in the New York Review of Books summer issue, explains the apparent stalemate in the formation of a new government and explores this precarious stage in the country's development.

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Twain’s Feast

Andrew Beahrs discusses the all-American menu in Mark Twain’s classic work A Tramp Abroad, made up of regional dishes from a time before railroads had broken down the country’s culinary boundaries.  In Twain’s Feast: Searching for America’s Lost Foods in the Footsteps of Samuel Clemens, he looks for these forgotten regional specialties, tracing Twain's footsteps as he goes.

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Ayelet Waldman’s Red Hook Road

Ayelet Waldman talks about her latest novel, Red Hook Road. Set on the coast of Maine over four summers, it tells the story of two families whose lives are unraveled and stitched together by misfortune, good intentions, failure, and by love and calamity.

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Preserving Endangered Languages

Linguists Juliette Blevins and Daniel Kauffman discuss endangered languages and the Endangered Language Alliance, which is working to record and save dying languages. They’ll look at the richness of languages spoken in New York City, and how many of those languages are at risk of fading from the city and the world.

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