Past Shows


American Hearts and Minds

With the presidential primaries practically over, let’s take a moment on the psychiatrist’s couch, with an eye on the health of American hearts and minds. We spent months and months inside two overheated political races, ...

Sex and Safety on Campus

For decades now, we’ve worried about an epidemic of sexual assault and un-safety at American colleges and universities.But there’s a question of whether, amid the familiar panic and new paperwork, we’ve made real progress toward solving the ...

Democracy In The Dumps

In 1989, the political theorist Francis Fukuyama pronounced that liberal democracy, on the American model, as the inevitable finish line of political evolution around the world: What we may be witnessing is not just the ...

Ferrante Fever

This week: beach reading and classic literature intersect in one long literary shocker. The books are the four “Neapolitan Novels” of Elena Ferrante—from My Brilliant Friend to The Story of a Lost Child, published late ...

Could Confucius Change Your Life?

In an panicked moment, maybe what we need most is a new set of eyes—or a very old one.Whatever you may find to be the problem—capitalist excess or teens “keeping it real,” digital isolation, widespread anxiety, Trumpian narcissism, ...

Ireland Rises Again!

It has been 100 years since Ireland’s Easter Rising, a fascinating, tragic episode that blended literature and liberation, defeat and victory, national reverence and remorse, and, in William Butler Yeats‘s high poetic oxymoron of “Easter, 1916“, ...

Eileen Myles’s Moment

This week, we’re tuning into the writer Eileen Myles. Born outside Boston in 1949, Myles is just now having an all-American moment. Myles has spent the last forty years as a queer and feminist icon, who’d like to be ...

Our Borders, Our Selves

What makes a border in 2016? And how is it, on an earth supposedly flattened by free markets and liberal values, that the walls around us seem higher than ever before?From the big-data border of the EU to Donald Trump’s (proposed) Great Wall, the fences ...


January 7, 2016

Our Postmodern Myth: “Star Wars” is Back

There’s a big old *spoiler alert* hanging over this whole radio show. You’ve been warned! We’re beginning 2016 by confronting what is already its biggest cultural phenomenon. The Force Awakens, the latest installment of Star Wars, on ...
Renata Adler
August 25, 2015

Renata Adler on Sadness, Selfies, and Losing

Consider Renata Adler one of the defiantly smart women of the age.She was a star of the culture pages of the New York Times in the mid-60s then for decades at The New Yorker. These days, ...
January 8, 2014

On Pope Francis:

For people who like homework, here’s my essential on-line reading list on Pope Francis:A Big Heart Open to God: The Pope’s wonderfully expressive, open, personal account of himself in an interview with the Jesuit magazine ...
August 19, 2013

Albert Murray, 1916 – 2013

Of the incomparably stylish, argumentative and, in the end, authoritative Sage of Harlem, it surely could be argued that his “Stomping the Blues” (1976) is still the most provocative (and without question best illustrated) book ...
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Tom Frank
Tom Frank speaks about Democrats in 2016, inequality, and a politics of complacency. | Hear More
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