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Memoirs

The Leonard Lopate Show

Richard Dawkins and the Making of a Scientist

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Evolutionary biologist and famous atheist Richard Dawkins discusses his childhood, his intellectual development, and the story of how he came to write The Selfish Gene, considered by many to be one of the most important books of the 20th century. His first memoir, An Appetite for Wonder: The Making of a Scientist is about his childhood in colonial Africa, the beginning of his career as a skeptic in boarding school by refusing to kneel for prayer in chapel, and his intellectual awakening at Oxford.

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The New Yorker: Out Loud

James Wood and Adam Gopnik on family memoirs.

Monday, July 15, 2013

James Wood and Adam Gopnik on family memoirs.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

The High Cost of Health Care; Family Stories; Jeffrey Sachs on JFK

Monday, June 10, 2013

New York Times reporter Elisabeth Rosenthal explains why colonoscopies have gotten more expensive, despite their becoming more commonplace, and how that’s driven up healthcare costs. Alysia Abbott talks about growing up with her openly gay father in 1970s and 80s San Francisco. David Berg tells of growing up with a troubled father and the 1968 murder of his brother. Economist Jeffrey Sachs on the foreign policy triumphs during John F. Kennedy’s presidency.

The Brian Lehrer Show

Maya Angelou, Activist and Poet, Dies at 86

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

She wrote "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings," mentored Oprah Winfrey, won a National Book Award, was friends with both Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr., and  famously delivered the inaugural poem at Bill Clinton's 1993 swearing-in. In this 2013 episode of the Brian Lehrer show, Angelou, who died Wednesday in her home, talked about her memoir, "Mom & Me & Mom," which chronicles the story of her relationship with her mother and the grandmother who raised her. 

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Madeleine Albright on Writing and World Politics

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright talks to Brian Lehrer about diplomatic transitions and her memoir, now in paperback, Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937-1948.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Winter Journal

Friday, November 23, 2012

Author Paul Auster talks about his memoir Winter Journal and his work set in New York City.

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Annotations: The NEH Preservation Project

Inspiration Strikes After Tragedy: Alfred Kazin on His New Yorker Trilogy

Friday, November 02, 2012

WNYC

Starting Out in the Thirties (1965), the second installment of Kazin's New Yorker Trilogy, had just been published when he gave this brief talk on the genesis of his artistic motivation at a 1965 Books and Authors Luncheon.

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The Takeaway

New Collection of Essays Detail the 'Secret Love Lives' of American-Muslim Women

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Be it about wearing the veil or their general place in society, discussion in the West about Muslim women — especially those conducted by non-Muslims — tend to portray them as silent, oppressed, and submissive victims. However, a new book titled "Love, InshAllah: The Secret Love Lives of American Muslim Women" reveals the diverse and sometimes unconventional experiences of Muslim-American women in sex and romance. 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Shirley MacLaine Is Over All That

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Academy Award-winning actress Shirley MacLaine tells us which things she is over dealing with in life, in love, at home, and in the larger world, and which things she will never get over, no matter how long she lives. I’m Over All That and Other Confessions is a collection of small observations and big-picture questions, and includes stories of some of the great people she’s known—Alfred Hitchcock, Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, and the two Jacks (Lemmon and Nicholson).

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Something to Prove

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Today, Dr. Yvonne Thornton is the first African-American woman to be board certified in the obstetrical sub-specialty of maternal-fetal medicine. But getting to this point wasn't easy. Her latest book, Something to Prove, picks up where her first book, The Ditchdigger's Daughters, left off, and charts Dr. Thornton's ascension to the top of her field as a physician.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Bush's Book

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

James Gordon Meek, correspondent for the New York Daily News Washington bureau, and Anne Kornblut, national politics reporter for The Washington Post, discuss President Bush's new memoir, Decision Points.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Antonia Fraser Remembers Harold Pinter

Friday, November 05, 2010

Prize-winning biographer Antonia Fraser discusses her life with playwright Harold Pinter, one of the literary world's most celebrated marriages. Her memoir Must You Go? My Life with Harold Pinter is a love story and an insightful account of their years together, from their initial meeting through their shared devotion to their work, their crises and laughter, through his death in 2008.

Comments [5]

The Leonard Lopate Show

Rosanne Cash: Composed

Monday, November 01, 2010

Rosanne Cash talks about growing up as the child of country legend Johnny Cash, and of her relationships with her mother and her famous stepmother: June Carter Cash. Her memoir Composed is her account of her artistic development, recording her first album, and working her way to success. She talks about her marriages, the country music establishment, taking a new direction in her music, leaving Nashville to move to New York, and her process of songwriting.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

My Nuclear Family

Friday, September 24, 2010

Christopher Brownfield describes his early life in the Navy and how he, a submariner, ended up in Iraq. In My Nuclear Family: Coming of Age in America’s Twenty-first Century Military, he writes about his years serving on a nuclear submarine, his ship’s secret missions in the global war on terror, and why his faith in the entire operation began to erode. He also describes working with General Petraeus and developing plans for energy efficiency, development, and counterinsurgency in Iraq.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Michelle Norris on The Grace of Silence

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Michelle Norris, cohost of NPR’s All Things Considered, discusses “the hidden conversation” on race that’s unfolding in America. In her new book The Grace of Silence, she unearthed and confronted painful family secrets and came to terms with her own identity and the history of race in her family.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

James Ellroy on The Hilliker Curse

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Legendary crime writer James Ellroy talks about his mother’s death and his obsessive search for “atonement in women.” The Hilliker Curse: My Pursuit of Women is about guilt and the power of malediction. Ellroy describes his shattered childhood, his delinquent teens, his love affairs and marriages, his nervous breakdown, and the beginning of a relationship with an extraordinary woman who may just be the woman he’s been searching for.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Scott Simon, host of NPR’s Weekend Edition, tells the story of how he and his wife found true love with two tiny strangers from the other side of the world. In Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other: In Praise of Adoption, he shares the anxieties, along with the joy, of adoption, and includes the stories of other adoptive families.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Don Maynard

Monday, September 13, 2010

Pro Football Hall of Famer Don Maynard talks about his time playing with the New York Jets. You Can't Catch Sunshine tells the story of his transformation from laid-back Texan to the toast of New York, and how his unlikely friendship with a newly minted quarterback named Joe Namath, resulted in the most unlikely upsets in football history: Super Bowl III.

Comments [5]

The Leonard Lopate Show

Searching for a New Kidney

Monday, September 06, 2010

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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The Leonard Lopate Show

Coming of Age as the Son of Two Shrinks

Monday, August 23, 2010

Micah Toub describes growing up with parents who were both Jungian therapists. His memoir, Growing Up Jung: Coming of Age as the Son of Two Shrinks, is a personal history and a survey of Jungian psychology, and looks at whether it’s possible for the child of two shrinks to reach adulthood mentally unscathed.

Comments [3]