Monday, November 2, 2009
In 1913, Leo Frank, a Jewish factory supervisor from “up North,” was lynched for the murder of 13-year-old Mary Phagan, a child laborer who worked in Frank’s pencil factory. The case remains one of the most complex and compelling in American history. It’s a true murder mystery but framed by the South’s complicated history of bigotry, xenophobia and class prejudice. Ben Loeterman wrote and directed a new PBS documentary that reexamines the story. The People V. Leo Frank airs November 2 at 10PM. Then, Bob talks with the top-selling rock duo of all time, Daryl Hall & John Oates. After more than 40 years of recording together, the Philadelphia musicians have enough songs to fill up a four-CD, 74-crack collection, 28 of them Top 40 hits. The new box set is called, “Do What You Want, Be What You Are: The Music of Daryl Hall and John Oates.”
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Becoming Human is a three-part special featured as part of PBS’s NOVA science television program. The new series describes the latest research about how humans evolved and how we can better understand our human ancestors. Rick Potts is the Director of the Smithsonian Institution’s Human Origins Program which opens in March 2010 at the National Museum of Natural History, and Graham Townsley is the producer and director of the PBS series. Then, although Israeli singer-songwriter Yasmin Levy’s father passed away when she was an infant, his life’s work lives on through his daughter’s music. Yitzhak Levy was a composer and musicologist who specialized in the preservation of Ladino Sephardic music. Ladino is an ancient and endangered form of Spanish originally spoken by Spanish Jews in the middle ages, and today is spoken by fewer than 200,000 people. Levy’s album “Mano Suave” is her first released in the U.S.
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Bob asks Susan Davis, lead reporter for the Wall Street Journal’s Washington Wire, about the results of Tuesday’s off-year elections in New Jersey, New York, Virginia, and Maine. Then, Jonathan Lethem describes his new novel this way: “It’s set on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, it’s strongly influenced by Saul Bellow, Philip K. Dick, Charles G. Finney and Hitchcock’s “Vertigo,” and it concerns a circle of friends including a faded child-star actor, a cultural critic, a hack ghost-writer of autobiographies, and a city official. And it’s long and strange.” Chronic City is Lethem’s seventh novel. His previous novels include the best-sellers, Fortress of Solitude and Motherless Brooklyn.
Thursday, November 5, 2009
For nine years, Dr. Julie Holland worked the night shift in the emergency room at Bellevue, the legendary psychiatric hospital in New York City. As the attending physician, Holland was the one-woman front line in charge of assessing and treating some of the city’s most troubled citizens: a naked man found barking like a dog in Times Square, a schizophrenic who begged for an injection of club soda to quiet his voices, a subway conductor who couldn’t get over seeing a woman pushed into the path of his train. Weekends at Bellevue is the title of Dr. Holland’s new book about her life inside and outside of the hospital. Then, entertainment critic David Kipen tells Bob what’s new in theaters.
Friday, November 6, 2009
David Broder of The Washington Post joins Bob to talk politics. Next, “The Men Who Stare At Goats” starring George Clooney, Jeff Bridges and Kevin Spacey is out in theaters today. The movie is based on the book written by British journalist Jon Ronson. It’s a wickedly funny tour of the hush-hush fringes of military intelligence — from experiments in mind control, to the ability to kill a goat by just staring at it. We replay Bob’s 2005 interview with Ronson about his book. Then, in this week’s installment of our ongoing series This I Believe, Bob talks with executive director Dan Gediman about the essay from General Lucius D. Clay. During World War II, Gen. Clay was Director of Material for the Army and then Deputy Director for War Mobilization and Reconversion. After the war he was U.S. Military Governor of Germany. Clay ordered and organized the massive air-lift to feed people in Soviet-blockaded Berlin.