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Hosted by Terry Gross, Fresh Air from WHYY is the Peabody Award-winning weekday magazine of contemporary arts and issues. One of public radio's most popular programs, Fresh Air features intimate conversations with today's biggest luminaries.
Updated: 6 min 56 sec ago

Comic Roy Wood Jr. Taps Into America's Psyche On 'The Daily Show'

Wed, 03/21/2018 - 12:16pm

Wood says the years he spent performing in comedy clubs in the South and Midwest — sometimes in places where he felt unsafe as a black man — prepared him for his work on The Daily Show.

(Image credit: Comedy Central )

Author Traces Christianity's Path From 'Forbidden Religion' To A 'Triumph'

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 12:04pm

Religion scholar Bart Ehrman says that the early spread of Christianity transformed the entire history of the West — for better or worse. His new book is The Triumph Of Christianity.

(Image credit: Feng Wei Photography/Getty Images)

CD Set Offers A Long, Satisfying View Of The New York Philharmonic Orchestra

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 12:47pm

The New York Philharmonic celebrates its 175th birthday with a box set dating back to its very first recordings a century ago, featuring some of the greatest musicians of the 20th-century.

Attacked By Alt-Right Trolls, A Jewish Journalist Links Trump To The Rise Of Hate

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 12:47pm

Trump "has made nationalist policy into the policy of the executive branch," says New York Times editor Jonathan Weisman. His new book, (((Semitism))), is about being Jewish in the Trump era.

Fresh Air Weekend: Author Luis Alberto Urrea; Personal Essayist Tim Kreider

Sat, 03/17/2018 - 8:00am

Urrea's new novel borrows from the story of his brother, who died of cancer. Kevin Whitehead reviews a box set by the late pianist Teddy Wilson. Kreider discusses Because I Love You.

(Image credit: Joe Mazza/Little Brown)

Amy Rigby Maintains Her Punk Mischievousness On 'The Old Guys'

Fri, 03/16/2018 - 1:53pm

Rigby's new album, which features jangly guitars and thumping drums, sounds like an old-fashioned rock 'n' roll album. But critic Ken Tucker says that The Old Guy is definitely not "a nostalgia item."

From 'F-Bomb' To 'Photobomb,' How The Dictionary Keeps Up With English

Fri, 03/16/2018 - 1:53pm

New words that enter the dictionary must meet three criteria, says Merriam-Webster lexicographer Kory Stamper: widespread use, sustained use and meaningful use. Originally broadcast April 19, 2017.

The Kronos Quartet Explodes Its Range On Two New Collaborations

Thu, 03/15/2018 - 1:18pm

Two new records showcase the quartet's recent collaborations with Laurie Anderson and a group from Mali. Critic Milo Miles says it's evident how much time and care went into Landfall and Ladilikan.

Robots Are Now 'Creating New Robots,' Tech Reporter Says

Thu, 03/15/2018 - 1:18pm

The evolution of artificial intelligence has exploded over the past five years, leading to computers that can drive and talk. New York Times' Cade Metz explains how machines are learning on their own.

From The 'Fresh Air' Archives: Eddie Bunker, Who Honed His Writing Craft In Prison

Wed, 03/14/2018 - 1:05pm

Bunker, who died in 2005, spent 18 years in prison before becoming a successful writer. He co-wrote the screenplay for the 1985 film Runaway Train, which helped launch the career of actor Danny Trejo.

Humor Blends With Tragedy In The Farcical 'Death of Stalin'

Wed, 03/14/2018 - 1:05pm

Armando Ianucci's new film satirizes the days in 1953 when the Soviet Union lost its totalitarian leader and members of his inner circle argued, plotted and killed while selecting a successor.

Danny Trejo On Acting, Addiction And Playing 'The Mean Chicano Dude'

Wed, 03/14/2018 - 11:33am

Trejo says that his experience standing in the San Quentin prison yard waiting for a riot prepared him for acting: "You're absolutely scared to death ... [but] you have to pretend you're not."

(Image credit: Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Disney)

'Russian Roulette' Authors Seek To Connect The Dots Between Trump And Putin

Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:00pm

Journalists Michael Isikoff and David Corn have been at the forefront of the investigation of the Trump campaign's ties to Russia. Their new book attempts to put all the pieces of the story together.

(Image credit: Evan Vucci/AP)

New Books Revive The Cold Cases Of Agatha Christie And The Golden State Killer

Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:32pm

Maureen Corrigan recommends two books that grapple with real-life mysteries: Laura Thompson's biography of the sphinxlike Agatha Christie, and I'll Be Gone In The Dark, by the late Michelle McNamara.

(Image credit: Pegasus Books)

Blacklisted From Syria, A Journalist Says: 'I Couldn't Imagine Staying Away

Mon, 03/12/2018 - 1:21pm

Rania Abouzeid has been covering Syria since 2011 — despite the fact that she's been called a spy, placed on wanted lists by Syrian intelligence and banned from entering the country.

'The Sparsholt Affair' Confirms Alan Hollinghurst's Status As A Literary Master

Mon, 03/12/2018 - 1:21pm

Hollinghurst's new domestic epic leapfrogs across seven decades to examine how the laws of social propriety shape the destinies of a father and son. Critic John Powers says the novel is fascinating.

Fresh Air Weekend: John Oliver; Transgender Activist Sarah McBride

Sat, 03/10/2018 - 8:00am

Oliver dives into often obscure stories on Last Week Tonight. Justin Chang reviews A Wrinkle in Time. McBride is the spokesperson for the LGBTQ rights organization the Human Rights Campaign.

(Image credit: HBO)

New Collection Catches Jazz Bassist Charles Mingus 'Live at Montreux 1975'

Fri, 03/09/2018 - 1:33pm

A new 2-CD set features a decades-old recording of Mingus and his quintet at Switzerland's Montreux Jazz Festival. Citic Kevin Whitehead says the album showcases one of Mingus' most explosive bands.

From Refugees To Politics, Mohsin Hamid Writes The Change He Wants To See

Fri, 03/09/2018 - 1:33pm

"All of us who are writers are doing something that actually matters," Hamid says. His novel, Exit West, follows a couple deciding whether to flee their homeland. Originally broadcast March 8, 2017.

With Go-For-Broke Exuberance, 'A Wrinkle In Time' Celebrates The Power Of Love

Fri, 03/09/2018 - 1:33pm

Ava DuVernay's adaptation of Madeleine L'Engle's novel assets that a young girl's imagination can change the world. Critic Justin Chang says despite some gaudiness, the film has its own kind of magic.

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