Fresh Air

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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: 42 min 19 sec ago

'The Ballad Of Black Tom' Offers A Tribute And Critique Of Lovecraft

Mon, 02/29/2016 - 12:44pm

Growing up, Victor LaValle loved reading the horror stories of H.P. Lovecraft. It wasn't until later that LaValle recognized the racism in Lovecraft's work and felt the need to respond.

Teen Girls And Social Media: A Story Of 'Secret Lives' And Misogyny

Mon, 02/29/2016 - 12:44pm

Author Nancy Jo Sales says the Internet fosters a kind of sexism that is harmful to teen girls. Her new book is American Girls: Social Media and the Secret Lives of Teenagers.

Fresh Air Weekend: 'Hap And Leonard'; 'All My Yesterdays'; Maggie Smith

Sat, 02/27/2016 - 8:00am

Joe R. Lansdale worked as a janitor before finding success as a writer. Kevin Whitehead reviews a two-CD set featuring Thad Jones and Mel Lewis. Maggie Smith discusses the pressures of acting.

Film Shines A 'Spotlight' On Boston's Clergy Sex Abuse Scandal

Fri, 02/26/2016 - 12:49pm

Director Tom McCarthy and former Globe editor Walter Robinson discuss Spotlight, the Oscar-nominated film about Boston's clergy sex abuse scandal. Originally broadcast Oct. 29, 2015.

Adam McKay Of 'Funny Or Die' Dissects The '08 Economic Crash In 'The Big Short'

Fri, 02/26/2016 - 12:49pm

Not only do the characters in McKay's Oscar-nominated film warn about the collapse of the global economy — they make money off of it. Originally broadcast Dec. 23, 2015.

Going For Broke: Atlantic City Falls On Hard Times

Thu, 02/25/2016 - 12:32pm

Once a grand seaside destination, Atlantic City now faces the prospect of a takeover by the state of New Jersey. Historian Bryant Simon and reporter Amy Rosenberg discuss the city's rise and fall.

'All My Yesterdays' Captures The Beginning Of A 50-Year Engagement

Wed, 02/24/2016 - 12:26pm

Music from Thad Jones and Mel Lewis' first and seventh Mondays at the Village Vanguard is out on a new two-CD set. Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead says All My Yesterdays explodes with creative energy.

'Hap And Leonard' Creator Needed To 'Burn Bridges' To Make It As A Writer

Wed, 02/24/2016 - 12:26pm

Joe R. Lansdale grew up poor in east Texas and worked as a janitor and in a potato field before finding success as a writer. Honky Tonk Samurai is the latest book in his mystery series.

New Changes To French Beg The Question: Why Are English Spellings So Weird?

Wed, 02/24/2016 - 12:26pm

As the French debate spelling changes to their language, linguist Geoff Nunberg suggests that Americans take a closer look at some the quirks of English.

Maggie Smith On The Pressures Of Acting: 'You Want So Much To Get It Right'

Tue, 02/23/2016 - 12:55pm

Known for her recent work in Downton Abbey and the Harry Potter films, the Oscar-winning actress now stars in The Lady in the Van, a film about an elderly woman who lived in a van for 15 years.

Bonnie Raitt Explores Her Roots In 'Dig In Deep'

Tue, 02/23/2016 - 12:55pm

Raitt's new album is dominated by uptempo songs, R&B sounds and complex emotions. Rock critic Ken Tucker says the singer's distinctive style gives Dig In Deep a "vital glow."

'Doubter's Almanac' Is A Family Saga, Plus Algebraic Equations

Mon, 02/22/2016 - 2:08pm

Ethan Canin traces the complicated lives of two generations of mathematical geniuses in his new novel. Critic Maureen Corrigan calls it A Doubter's Almanac an "elegant and devastating novel."

'Pandemic' Asks: Is A Disease That Will Kill Tens Of Millions Coming?

Mon, 02/22/2016 - 1:34pm

Author Sonia Shah says that urbanization and air travel put the global population at an increased risk for disease. "Zika is a great example of how new pathogens are emerging today," she says.

Fresh Air Weekend: Trevor Noah; The I Don't Cares' Debut; 'Narconomics'

Sat, 02/20/2016 - 8:00am

Noah discusses The Daily Show and growing up in South Africa. Critic Ken Tucker reviews Wild Stab, the debut album by The I Don't Cares. Tom Wainwright explains the business models of drug cartels.

Long-Term Devastation Springs From A Hasty Judgment Call In 'A War'

Fri, 02/19/2016 - 12:38pm

Tobias Lindholm's Oscar-nominated film tells the story of a Danish commander's error in judgment during the war in Afghanistan. Critic David Edelstein says A War will "leave you in pieces."

Frame-By-Frame, Filmmakers Make The Mundane Miraculous In 'Anomalisa'

Fri, 02/19/2016 - 12:38pm

Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson discuss their Oscar-nominated film. Anomalisa's stop-motion "communicates fragility and humanity and brokenness," Kaufman says. Originally broadcast Dec. 22, 2015.

It's All In Your Head: Director Pete Docter Gets Emotional In 'Inside Out'

Fri, 02/19/2016 - 12:38pm

The director's Oscar-nominated film illustrates the inner workings of an 11-year-old's mind, and includes the characters Sadness, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Joy. Originally broadcast June 10, 2015.

Under Apartheid, Trevor Noah's Mom Taught Him To Face Injustice With Humor

Thu, 02/18/2016 - 1:57pm

The Daily Show host grew up biracial in South Africa; his mother was jailed for having a relationship with his father. But she always turned to humor before anger, Noah says — a trait he's inherited.

'Strange Gods' Chronicles The History Of Secularism And Conversion

Wed, 02/17/2016 - 12:20pm

Journalist Susan Jacoby tells Fresh Air that more than half of Americans will change religion at least once in their adult life time. Her new book is Strange Gods: A Secular History of Conversion.

New Recording Revives Ravel's 'L'Enfant Et Les Sortileges'

Wed, 02/17/2016 - 12:20pm

The opera, by the late composer Maurice Ravel, spins a modern fairy tale about a naughty child at bedtime. Critic Lloyd Schwartz reviews a new recording of it by conductor Seiji Ozawa.

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