Arts & Culture

Maria Mudd Ruth: "Rare Bird" (Rodale)

July 18, 2005

A small, mysterious bird has been flying along the Pacific coast since well before Captain Cook mapped those shores. A nature writer reveals why it took 185 years to find its secret nesting place and how it's now endangered.

Marc Shell: "Polio and its Aftermath" (Harvard U. Press)

July 15, 2005

Fifty years ago, Jonas Salk announced a vaccine against polio. But the disease remains far from conquered. A survivor of childhood polio examines the impact of polio on our culture and what it still can teach us.

East Meets West: Hiroshige at the Phillips Collection

July 13, 2005

An exhibit at the Phillips Collection in Washington illustrates the influence of 19th-century Japanese woodblock prints on early Western modern painting. Diane and her guests talk about this cultural and artistic encounter and how it...

Elizabeth Kostova: "The Historian" (Little, Brown)

July 11, 2005

One of the summer's hottest reads is a first novel by a woman who wrote in obscurity for ten years. She talks with Diane about writing a fresh take on the Dracula legend as seen through the eyes of scholars.

John Sacret Young: "Remains: Non-Viewable"

July 7, 2005

The co-creator, writer, and executive producer of "China Beach," the television series about Vietnam, offers a memoir about how the death of his first cousin in Vietnam impacted his life and shaped him as a writer.

Jim Lehrer: "The Franklin Affair" (Random House) (Rebroadcast)

July 4, 2005

In his 15th novel, the PBS news anchor investigates a possible 18th century scandal. His new book uncovers some little known controversies about the life of Benjamin Franklin and provides a satire of the world of founding father...

Umberto Eco: "The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana" (Harcourt)

June 20, 2005

The Italian author explains how he drew on the pop culture of his youth in Fascist Italy for his latest novel. It's the story of a middle-aged antique books dealer trying to rediscover his identity after he awakes from a stroke with...

Readers' Review: "The Wife" by Meg Wolitzer

June 15, 2005

Listeners join an in-studio panel to discuss this story of the long and stormy marriage between a world-famous novelist and his wife.

Richard McCann: "Mother of Sorrows" (Pantheon)

May 31, 2005

Ten interwoven stories about growing up in the suburbs. They're stories of discovery, loss and the relationship between a son and his complicated mother.

Mireille Guiliano: "French Women Don't Get Fat" (Knopf)

May 27, 2005

French women are known to enjoy bread, pastry, wine, and regular three-course meals. One French woman shares her secrets of eating for pleasure without getting fat.

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