Books

(Photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/roemerman/444304025/">Steven Roerman </a>via Flickr Creative Commons)

Jay Wexler's new book and blog focus on the odd Constitutional clauses we should, maybe, focus on a little less...and those we should, perhaps, turn into awesome t-shirts.

Erik Eisele / NHPR

As of early 2010, more than 2 million US troops have served in Iraq and Afghanistan. Larry Minear, a researcher on international and internal armed conflicts, has spent a lot of time talking to more than 175 of these veterans, many of whom came from New Hampshire and Vermont. He talked to them about what motivated them to go to war, what they did once they went over, and how they rejoined society upon their return.

Is time real, or is change just a kind of optical illusion resting on a deeper unchanging reality?

As finite creatures, with death hovering just out of our sight, the true nature of time haunts all our endeavors. Tomorrow, physicist Brian Greene tackles time's illusion in his Fabric of Reality PBS series. Science, however, is just one way we ask about the reality of time.

Zimpenfish / Flickr Creative Commons

Amazon is back in the business of getting books on print - only now, they're hopping the middle man. Jason Boog, Editor of the publishing website Galley Cat, explains.

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Karl-Ludwig Poggeman / Flickr Creative Commons

Editor for Scientific American Michael Moyer explains how genetically-modified mosquitoes could stop the spread of Dengue Fever; unless uncomfortable corporate practices don't cause a GMO backlash first.

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Kaveh Khodjasteh / Flickr Creative Commons

Deaf Israeli slam-poet Aneta Brodski collaborates with Palestinian interpreter Veronica Staehle, uniting culture and language through art.

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Republic, Lost

Nov 1, 2011

"Why have fundamentally good people, with good intentions, allowed our democracy to be co-opted by outside interests?", asks Harvard professor, Lawrence Lessig. His new book "Republic, Lost" explores how he says money has corrupted American politics.  Lessig blames special interests and campaign finance rules to the fact that U.S citizens trust government less than ever. He also  suggests  a widespread mobilization and new Constitution Convention to regain control over what he says is a 'corrupted but redeemable representational system. 

Guest

Rick Broussard, Editor of Volume 2 in the New Hampshire Pulp Fiction Series, explains why New Hampshire is such a good background for a mystery anthology.

When Steve Jobs was 6 years old, his young next door neighbor found out he was adopted. "That means your parents abandoned you and didn't want you," she told him.

Jobs ran into his home, where his adoptive parents reassured him that he was theirs and that they wanted him.

This month’s installment of our 11 for '11 series of big picture conversations on the issues of our times. Today, we talk with Harvard experimental psychologist Stephen Pinker about his new book, Better Angels of Our Nature, about the history of violence, and why it's declined

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Outcasts United

Sep 12, 2011

In 2009, we spoke with new York Times reporter Warren St. John about his book Outcasts United– which tells the story of the Fugees soccer team and the growth of community around them.  The book is currently being featured in the Concord Reads program at the Concord Public Library.  Concord is a city that has experienced its own influx of refugees from war torn countries in recent years.  Here is what Warren had to say about the Fugees' inspiring story.

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[Spoiler alert: This review gives away some elements of the story.]

When a friend gave me Merce Rodoreda's Death in Spring, he told me it would blow my mind. Ten pages in, I doubted his claim.

The book begins when the narrator, a 14-year-old boy from a small mountain village, slips into a cold, sometimes savage river to escape a bee. His swim is interspersed with descriptions of his isolated community, with its pink painted homes and wisteria vines that "over the years, upwrenched houses."

This month’s installment of our 11 for '11 series of big picture conversations on the issues of our times. Today, we talk with poet and journalist Eliza Griswold, about her book The Tenth Parallel: Dispatches from the Fault Line Between Christianity and Islam. Griswold spend seven years traveling the band of the globe called the 'tenth parallel,' the latitude about ten degrees above the equator where two worlds collide.

(Photo by The American Libary Association via Flickr/Creative Commons)

Elizabeth Gilbert reads from her new book, Committed: A Skeptic Makes Piece with Marriage, and talks about her relationship, skipping yoga in the mornings, and why Pamela Anderson is a great philosopher.

This segment was produced by Shannon Dooling.

The controversial author and self-proclaimed inventor of a new genre of literary non-fiction, Ben Mezrich's bestselling books include Bringing Down the House and The Accidental Billionaires. The first was the source for the film, 21 and the second was adapted into the Academy Award-winning movie The Social Network.

This month’s installment of our 11 for '11 series of big picture conversations on the issues of our times. Today, we talk with psychologist, author and blogger Bruce Levine, a radical progressive calling for the resurgence of an active and energized democracy. Polls show that politicians are out of step with the will of the citizens on issues like the wall street bailout, health care reform and the current deadlock over raising the debt ceiling.

David J. Murray, cleareyephoto.com

David McCullough is widely known for his Pulitzer Prize-winning writing on great leaders and American politics, in books such as Truman and John Adams. In his newest work he turns his focus to Americans abroad in Nineteenth Century Paris.

In this edition of Writers on a New England Stage, McCullough reads from his newest book, The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris, a chronicle spanning generation, and sits down for a conversation about his work, his influences, and America's age-old fascination with The City of Light.

David J. Murray, cleareyephoto.com

Neil Gaiman is often credited for expanding the audience for comics beyond white, teenage boys with his Sandman series. But he is also a true multi-media phenom, a filmmaker, (now) recording artist, screenwriter for the likes of Dr. Who, and prolific author, including the multi-award winning, groundbreaking novel American Gods.

A new book by George Mason University Economics Chair Tyler Cowen has inspired spirited debate among beltway and economics circles. Published only as an e-book, The Great Stagnation: How America Ate All the Low-Hanging Fruit of Modern History, Got Sick, and Will (Eventually) Feel Better argues that America's economic growth plateaued in the 1970s. Median wages have stagnated since, he says, because we have eaten all the low hanging fruit that enabled innovation to flourish and average income to grow across the board.

In January, the global food price index rose for the seventh month in a row, reaching the higest level since record keeping began in 1990. Raj Patel is an activist and academic whose book, Stuffed and Starved, predicted the food crisis that caused riots on four continents back in 2008. More recently, his book, The Value of Nothing, argues that we as citizens should rethink our assumptions about rational markets and the very meaning of democracy.

How has technology changed the ways that we interact with one another? Sherry Turkle's Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other is the third in a trilogy exploring this question. Social networking, e-mail and texting, Turkle says, provide the façade of socialization but ultimately leave their users dissatisfied and disconnected. It may be time to reflect and reconsider the role we really want technology to play in our lives.

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