The Bob Edwards Show, April 11-15, 2011
Monday, April 11, 2011: Fifty years ago, a young, white lawyer from Boston headed to the deep South to help black Mississippians fighting for the right to vote. Gordon Martin served as a Justice Department attorney for the prosecution of a watershed lawsuit, a case that predated the national Civil Rights movement and helped reshape the South. Martin has written a book about the experience titled Count Them One by One. Then, PEN/Hemingway Award recipient Mark Richard turned to his childhood years in Southern hospitals for his memoir House of Prayer No. 2: A Writer’s Journey Home. Labeled a “special child” by doctors, Richard retreated into a world of books, attempting to block out his alcoholic father and crippled hips. He eventually defied both his doctors and his parents’ expectations and today is a journalist and author of two books of short stories.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011: Dean Faulkner Wells is the only niece of William Faulkner, the last Faulkner in her generation and the only living member of the family who grew up at Rowan Oak, Faulkner’s home in Oxford, Mississippi. She called him “Pappy.” Now 75-years-old, Mrs. Wells has recently written a book, Every Day by the Sun: A Memoir of the Faulkners of Mississippi. Then, Bob talks about publishing’s new titles for spring with Salon.com’s Laura Miller.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011: John Francis went 17 years without saying a word. He was tired of having to explain to people why he gave up using motorized transportation. Now a National Geographic Education Fellow, Francis tells his story in a new book, The Ragged Edge of Silence.
Thursday, April 14, 2011: For over twenty-three years, Al Gini was the “Resident Philosopher” for WBEZ in Chicago. A professor of business ethics at Loyola University, Gini has recently written Seeking the Truth of Things, a series of essays on topics he says people actually care about: the meaning of work, sin, laughter, moral courage and leisure. Then, our resident folklorists Steve Winick and Nancy Groce share songs and stories all about water.
Friday, April 15, 2011: Doyle McManus, Washington Bureau Chief for the Los Angeles Times joins Bob to talk about politics and other news. Next, while in high school, Joseph Frederick unfurled a 14-foot banner on a public sidewalk outside his school during the 2002 Olympic torch relay that read “Bong Hits 4 Jesus.” School officials claimed he was promoting the use of drugs and suspended him from school. Frederick sued the school. The feud went all the way to the Supreme Court and is a landmark free speech case. Jim Foster tells the story and explains the ramifications of the case in his book Bong Hits 4 Jesus: A Perfect Constitutional Storm in Alaska’s Capital. Then, in this week’s installment of our ongoing series This I Believe, we hear the essay of Colette Decker. She grew up on a farm in Wyoming, one of ten children. Harvest dollars didn’t stretch far, and each of the kids went to work early, even as their classmates had time for games or after school activities. Decker says she and her siblings knew they had less than others, and that created an intense drive to succeed — a hunger for achievement that would have been absent in an easier childhood.