Caroline Bird, Eric Berne, and Elie Abel

Thursday, April 14, 1966

This episode is from the WNYC archives. It may contain language which is no longer politically or socially appropriate.

Maurice Dolbier introduces Caroline Bird, author of "The Invisible Scar," a work about the Great Depression. She discusses the difficulties of gaining employment during the Depression - particularly, she notes the impact on women. She also discusses the role of sex during the depression, for both the married and unmarried. She says that the risks were much higher and that having more than two children were a luxury.
She contrasts the generation of the Depression to the one that followed. Bird sounds almost sentimental about the generation who grew up in the thirties - she describes a closeness with neighbors and a spirit of unity that no longer exists. She describes her generation's clear goals, which are a contrast to the generations born during the Depression and those born after World War II. The Depression babies yearn for attention, and the baby boomers - the generation raised with television, and who protest simply to protest. She describes them as selfish, she insinuates that they are not truly interested in racial equality and the plight of the Vietnamese, and rather just crave attention and expect the middle-aged liberal to fix things.

Next, Dolbier introduces Dr. Eric Berne, author of the bestseller, "Games People Play."Berne discusses how he became a poet and writer and eventually a psychiatrist, then describes the mapping of interpersonal relationships which lead to the book and the development of transactional analysis.

Finally, Dolbier introduces Elie Abel to speak. Author of "The Missile Crisis," Abel shares his thoughts about book publication. He speaks also of the reviews, noting that he doesn't understand the term "nonfiction novel." He speaks about President Kennedy, the Cuban Missile Crisis and the process of writing a present history.

Audio courtesy of the NYC Municipal Archives WNYC Collection

WNYC archives id: 71394
Municipal archives id: T2549

Hosted by:

Maurice Dolbier


Elie Abel, Eric Berne and Caroline Bird


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About Books and Authors Luncheon

Hear, first-hand, the thoughts and voices of some of the greatest thinkers, adventurers, and characters of our nation.

Legendary New York Herald-Tribune book review editor Irita Van Doren, moderator of the series [1949-1968], has an intellectual largesse and a genuine interest in the American literary arts, which produces engaging, sometimes off-beat discussions with both first-time and veteran authors. 

In addition to literary writers like Louis Auchincloss, James Michener, and Rachel Carson, listeners are enthralled by nonliterary experts speaking on their autobiographies.  Sammy Davis, Jr., expounds on Yes, I Can!; burlesque star Gypsy Rose Lee entertains audiences while promoting Gypsy, A Memoir; and sociologist Vance Packard defends his groundbreaking exposé on advertising, The Hidden Persuaders. 

Those notable personalities join a slew of others like Steve Allen, Marian Anderson, Bennett Cerf, Noel Coward, Jules Feiffer, Edna Ferber, A. E. Hotchner, Fannie Hurst, Jane Jacobs, Somerset Maugham, Vladimir Nabokov, Gore Vidal, Jessamyn West, and Marguerite Young.  An indispensable catalog of craft talk and biographical context, the New York Herald-Tribune Books and Authors Luncheon series explores all manner of disciplines and issues in American arts and history.


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