Interviews By Topic

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Junot Diaz — the Dominican-born, MacArthur genius, Pulitzer Prize-winning author — has written some of some of the most brilliant contemporary fiction about the immigrant experience. He spoke to Steve about his book "This Is How You Lose Her."More

internet activist on laptop

In her new book, "Now I Know Who My Comrades Are," Emily Parker profiles a few online activists, and writes about how they're transforming life in China, Cuba and Russia.More

Konya, Turkey.

Orhan Pamuk is Turkey’s most famous writer and a cultural ambassador for Turkey around the world.  He talks with Steve Paulson about his novel “Snow,” in which a secular poet is confronted by Islamic fundamentalists in a provincial town.More

Junot Diaz recommends Samuel R. Delany's reverse-chronology novel that captures the tragic story of a closeted poet who struggles to reckon with his desires.More

David Foster Wallace’s masterpiece — Infinite Jest — is famously difficult to read. Colleen Leahy and Makini Allwood are climbing the literary mountain of a book, and sharing their experience on a podcast called "And But So."More

woman on beach

It's summertime and the living is easy — but the reading shouldn't be. "To The Best Of Our Knowledge" producers compile a reading list for those seeking a challenge as their beach read. More

Syna So Pro

Musical guest Syna So Pro explains how her classical music training informs her electronic loops.More

Bob Hansmen

One professor crosses St. Louis’ racial divide.More

Nicole Paris

Father-daughter beatboxers Nicole Paris and Ed Cage take vocal percussion from the cradle to the stage.More

Sam Coster

How a brush with cancer inspired three brothers — Sam, Seth and Adam Coster — to build a bigger game.More

Historical photo of the St. Louis Arch

Edward McPherson on the legacy of the St. Louis Arch.More

"The Tradition" book cover design by Phil Kovacevich and art by Ralphi Burgess. (Copper Canyon Press)

The poet Jericho Brown grew up in a black church in Louisiana. He left that church years ago, but his poems keep returning to worship and the Bible — and to religion.More

Religious historian Jeffrey Kripal believes that anomalous experiences — near-death experiences, telepathic dreams and other primal spiritual encounters — are the deep roots of religion. You might call it "religion before it becomes religion."More

Elizabeth Krohn says she left her body, went somewhere else, met and talked to God. And then came back to dream the future. What does her experience tell us about where religion comes from?More

How painting radium on watches and instrument dials killed more than 50 young women working in Ottawa, Illinois.More

Moby Dick

Ricardo Pitts-Wiley is the director and writer of the theatrical production of “Moby Dick: Then and Now,” which re-imagines Melville's tale in a context relevant to its cast — inmates at Rhode Island’s state juvenile correctional facility.More

Borges

When Steve was handed the assignment of interviewing Jorge Luis Borges — but with less than 24 hours to prepare — the opportunity felt like more of a curse than a blessing.More

ipad reading

Are we losing the ability to read difficult books? Cognitive scientist Maryanne Wolf says we need to develop a "bi-literate reading brain" so that we can switch back and forth between the deep reading of print and the skimming of electronic texts.More

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