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: 1 hour 20 min ago

For Laura Jane Grace, Punk Was A Form Of Armor

Tue, 04/04/2017 - 2:43pm

The founder of the band Against Me! felt so conflicted about her gender growing up that she thought she was schizophrenic. Since transitioning, she's become more in touch with herself.

(Image credit: Ryan Russell/Total Treble Music)

Singer-Songwriter Valerie June Draws On Her Southern Roots In 'The Order Of Time'

Mon, 04/03/2017 - 1:13pm

Though the Tennessee-born musician lives in Brooklyn now, she still takes inspiration from the Gospel music she grew up with. Rock critic Ken Tucker reviews June's latest album.

Author Looks To Other Countries To Rethink America's Complicated Tax Code

Mon, 04/03/2017 - 1:13pm

When it comes to taxes, T.R. Reid says other countries have done "what the U.S. Congress evidently can't do — they've made it simple." His new book is A Fine Mess.

Fresh Air Weekend: Illustrator Emil Ferris; 'Devil And Webster'; For-Profit Colleges

Sat, 04/01/2017 - 8:00am

Ferris had to learn to draw again after West Nile left her paralyzed. Maureen Corrigan reviews Jean Hanff Korelitz's new novel. Tressie McMillan Cottom says for-profit colleges sell "risky education."

(Image credit: Fantagraphics)

During World War II, Even Filmmakers Reported For Duty

Fri, 03/31/2017 - 2:04pm

Mark Harris says the military worked with Hollywood directors to create movies about the war. His book, Five Came Back, is the basis for a new Netflix docu-series. Originally broadcast March 3, 2014.

In 'Monsters,' Graphic Novelist Emil Ferris Embraces The Darkness Within

Thu, 03/30/2017 - 12:58pm

After West Nile virus left her paralyzed, the Chicago illustrator had to relearn how to draw. She says that experience was key to the publication of My Favorite Thing Is Monsters.

(Image credit: Fantagraphics)

The U.S. Has An 'Active Cyber War Underway' To Thwart The North Korean Nuclear Threat

Wed, 03/29/2017 - 12:21pm

New York Times reporter David Sanger talks about North Korea's nuclear program and warns that the regime, which has been "fodder for late night comedians for many many years," is no joke.

'One Of The Boys' Tells The Story Of A Corrosive Father-Son Relationship

Wed, 03/29/2017 - 12:19pm

Daniel Magariel's debut novel explores the fierce love a 12-year-old boy has for his abusive father. Critic Maureen Corrigan calls it a "slim, deeply affecting and brutal story."

(Image credit: MarianCarrasquero/NPR)

Inside DARPA, The Pentagon Agency Whose Technology Has 'Changed the World'

Tue, 03/28/2017 - 12:27pm

Journalist Sharon Weinberger discusses the Defense Advance Research Projects Agency, which develops innovative scientific technologies for the military. Her new book is The Imagineers of War.

How For-Profit Colleges Sell 'Risky Education' To The Most Vulnerable

Mon, 03/27/2017 - 12:49pm

Tressie McMillan Cottom worked in enrollment at two for-profit colleges, but quit because she felt uncomfortable selling students an education they couldn't afford. Her new book is Lower Ed.

(Image credit: Cargo/Getty Images/Imagezoo)

Fresh Air Weekend: Comic Pete Holmes; Ron Powers Discusses His Sons' Schizophrenia

Sat, 03/25/2017 - 8:00am

Holmes, who grew up a devout Christian, says he draws on his early career and "churchy" roots in HBO's Crashing. Powers talks about mental illness and his efforts to help his sons.

(Image credit: McCall B. Polay/HBO)

A Middle-Aged Misanthrope Reconnects With His Long Lost Daughter In 'Wilson'

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 2:46pm

Daniel Clowes' angst-ridden graphic novel is the basis for a new film starring Woody Harrelson and Laura Dern. Critic David Edelstein says Wilson's abrasive protagonist is worth getting to know.

The Supreme Court Ruling That Led To 70,000 Forced Sterilizations

Fri, 03/24/2017 - 2:46pm

In the early 20th century, American eugenicists used forced sterilization to "breed out" traits considered undesirable. Adam Cohen tells the story in Imbeciles. Originally broadcast March 7, 2016.

Remembering Chuck Barris, Self-Proclaimed 'King Of Daytime Television'

Thu, 03/23/2017 - 12:53pm

Barris, who died Tuesday in New York, created The Dating Game, The Newlywed Game and The Gong Show, and later wrote the autobiography, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. Originally broadcast in 1986.

An 'Intimate Portrait' Of Dorothy Day, The Catholic Activist With A Bohemian Past

Thu, 03/23/2017 - 12:53pm

Kate Hennessy drew from family letters, diaries and memories in writing Dorothy Day, a biography of her late grandmother. Day founded the Catholic Worker Movement and is now a candidate for sainthood.

Inside The Wealthy Family That Has Been Funding Steve Bannon's Plan For Years

Wed, 03/22/2017 - 1:06pm

Jane Mayer writes in the New Yorker about Robert Mercer and his daughter, Rebekah, who have poured millions of dollars into Breitbart News, and who pushed to have Bannon run Trump's campaign.

Smart, Satirical 'Devil And Webster' Takes On College Identity Politics

Wed, 03/22/2017 - 10:34am

Jean Hanff Korelitz's new novel surveys student life at a New England college in turmoil. Critic Maureen Corrigan says The Devil and Webster is "wittily on target."

(Image credit: Raquel Zaldivar/NPR)

Comic Pete Holmes Draws On His Early Career And 'Churchy' Roots In 'Crashing'

Tue, 03/21/2017 - 12:39pm

Holmes, who grew up a devout Christian, says he saw himself as a "Good Boy" comic in the early stages of his career. "I was basically picturing [Jesus] in the back of the club."

(Image credit: McCall B. Polay/HBO)

Remembering Rock N' Roll Pioneer Chuck Berry

Mon, 03/20/2017 - 12:20pm

The legendary guitarist, songwriter and singer died Saturday at the age of 90. Rock historian Ed Ward looks back on Berry's music and career. Originally broadcast in May 2008.

Father Of 2 Sons With Schizophrenia Talks Of His Struggle To Save Them

Mon, 03/20/2017 - 12:13pm

"There is no greater ... feeling of helplessness than to watch two beloved sons deteriorate before [your] eyes," says Ron Powers. His new book is No One Cares About Crazy People.

(Image credit: Roy Scott/Ikon Images/Getty Images)

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