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Fresh Air

Fresh Air from WHYY, the Peabody Award-winning weekday magazine of contemporary arts and issues, is one of public radio's most popular programs. Hosted by Terry Gross, the show features intimate conversations with today's biggest luminaries.
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Dec 5, 2016

Nicole Maines was born an identical twin, but unlike her twin brother, never identified as male. She became prominent in the trans community after winning a discrimination lawsuit. Kylar Broadus directed The Transgender Civil Rights Project and was the first openly transgender person to testify before the U.S. Senate. They’re both featured in the HBO documentary, ‘The Trans List.’  Ken Tucker reviews Miranda Lambert’s new album, ‘The Weight of These Wings.’

Dec 3, 2016

Carrie Fisher was an insecure 19-year-old when she appeared as Princess Leia in the first ‘Star Wars’ movie, a role that would come to define her career. She tells Terry Gross that despite becoming romantically involved with her older, married co-star, Harrison Ford, she often felt isolated on set. Fisher has a new memoir called 'The Princess Diarist.'  Cleve Jones became an activist after Harvey Milk's assassination, and he lost countless friends to the AIDS epidemic. He conceived the AIDS Memorial Quilt in 1985. His memoir is 'When We Rise.'

Dec 2, 2016

Christenberry, who died on Monday, drew on his childhood experiences in the rural South. One of his pieces was inspired by an encounter he had with a Klansman. [Originally broadcast in 1997] Charlie Rich, who died in 1995, was known for "countrypolitan" music, which featured orchestral arrangements and backup singers. A new Rich tribute album has just been released. [Originally broadcast in 1992.] Film critic David Edelstein reviews ‘Jackie,’ a biopic about Jacqueline Kennedy.

Dec 1, 2016

‘New York Times’ reporter Eric Lipton warns that Donald Trump could take actions as president that would benefit his business holdings, and "it wouldn't be a formal ethics violation," Lipton says. Also jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews prolific guitarist Mary Halvorson’s album ‘Away with You.’

Nov 30, 2016

Kenneth Lonergan's new film is about a janitor (Casey Affleck), crippled by guilt and grief, who returns to his hometown after the death of his brother. Also, critic at large John Powers reviews two works that confront the refugee crisis. 

Nov 29, 2016

Jones became an activist after Harvey Milk's assassination, and he lost countless friends to the AIDS epidemic. He says, "There are some days when it is so painful that I really can barely function." He conceived the AIDS Memorial Quilt in 1985. His memoir is ‘When We Rise.’

Nov 28, 2016

Carrie Fisher was an insecure 19-year-old when she appeared as Princess Leia in the first Star Wars movie, a role that would come to define her career. She tells Terry Gross that despite becoming romantically involved with her older, married co-star, Harrison Ford, she often felt isolated on set. Fisher has a new memoir, called 'The Princess Diarist.'  Also, classical music critic Lloyd Schwartz reviews the national touring production of the Broadway musical "An American in Paris.'

Nov 26, 2016

Writer Zadie Smith talks about nostalgia and why she likes talking to people with whom she disagrees. Her new novel is 'Swing Time.' Also, ‘Daily Show’ host Trevor Noah revisits his childhood in apartheid-era South Africa in his new memoir, ‘Born a Crime.’ Noah says writing the book helped him see that his mother was the real hero of his story.

Nov 25, 2016

Before he died earlier this month, Cohen released a new album with songs that wrestled with mortality, transcendence and the question of God — themes he touched on in this 2006 interview with Terry Gross.

Nov 24, 2016

For Thanksgiving, two archival interviews with American music icons: Cash spoke to Terry Gross in 1997, Charles in 1998.

Nov 23, 2016

The powerhouse soul singer for The Dap-Kings spoke to 'Fresh Air' in '07 and again in '16, after she'd been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Jones died on Nov. 18. Book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews Michael Chabon’s new novel, ‘Moonglow.’

Nov 22, 2016

The ‘Daily Show’ host revisits his childhood in apartheid-era South Africa in his new memoir, ‘Born a Crime.’ Noah says writing the book helped him see that his mother was the real hero of his story.

Nov 21, 2016

Writer Zadie Smith talks about the nature of talent, nostalgia, and why she likes talking to people with whom she disagrees. Her new novel is ‘Swing Time.’

Nov 19, 2016

Coppola was 29 when he signed on to direct ‘The Godfather.’ Coppola talks about his disagreements with the studio, casting Marlon Brando, and his own Italian-American family.  Also, Casey Affleck talks about his new film 'Manchester by the Sea,' his childhood, and getting cast in 'Gone Baby Gone,' by his brother Ben.

Nov 18, 2016

As a child, Colson Whitehead imagined the Underground Railroad to be a subway beneath the earth that escaped slaves could ride to freedom. He returns to his childhood vision in his novel, 'Underground Railroad,’ which won the National Book Award. Congressman John Lewis recalls marching for voting rights from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965, when he was beaten by police. He spoke to Terry Gross in 2009. Film critic David Edelstein reviews ‘Manchester by the Sea.’ 

Nov 17, 2016

‘Bloomberg’ journalist Joshua Green discusses Steve Bannon's work for the alt-right website Breitbart News. Trump's chief strategist, Green says, was "one of the major figures" in Clinton's defeat. Also, Casey Affleck talks about his new film ‘Manchester by the Sea,' his childhood, and getting cast in ‘Gone Baby Gone,’ by his brother Ben.

Nov 16, 2016

Coppola was 29 when he signed on to direct a film based on Mario Puzo's novel about an Italian-American crime family. "I was always just trying to bluff the studio to let me do it my way," he says.

Nov 15, 2016

‘New Yorker’ writer Evan Osnos talks about the executive orders and other actions that Trump can use to undo existing agreements on climate change, immigration and foreign policy.

Nov 14, 2016

The ‘Pitch Perfect’ star talks about being small with a powerful voice, her break-out role in 'Up in the Air,' and why church scared her as a kid. Her new book of personal essays is ‘Scrappy Little Nobody.’ Rock critic Ken Tucker reviews the album ‘Mid-Thirties Single Scene’ from Scott and Charlene’s Wedding.

Nov 12, 2016

In the HBO series 'Insecure,' Issa Rae's character feels like she's "not black enough for the black people and not white enough for the white people." John Powers reviews the film 'Certain Women.' Also, Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy offer a pessimistic view of human nature in 'Westworld,' HBO's futuristic TV series about a theme park that allows tourists to act out their Wild West fantasies.

Nov 11, 2016

To mark Veterans' Day, we’re replaying interviews with Iraq War veterans Brian Castner and Kayla Williams, and WWII veteran Robert Kotlowitz. Also, Brian Turner reads his poem ‘Here, Bullet.’ Film critic David Edelstein reviews ‘Arrival.’

Nov 10, 2016

"Television has really become where a lot of the action is right now," critic David Bianculli says. His new book revisits the best of the small screen — from ‘I Love Lucy’ to ‘The Walking Dead.’ Maureen Corrigan reviews ‘Pieces of Soap,’ a book of essays by Stanley Elkin.

Nov 9, 2016

We discuss the 2016 election with ‘Atlantic Magazine’ correspondent James Fallows, who spent three years flying his own plane to small towns across the U.S., reporting on the people he met.

Nov 8, 2016

In the HBO series ‘Insecure,’ Issa Rae’s character feels like she’s “not black enough for the black people and not white enough for the white people." Rae talks about her comedy influences, growing up with a Senegalese father, and her web series ‘The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl.’  John Powers reviews the film ’Certain Women.’

Nov 7, 2016

"Donald and I go all the way back to when his hair was dark brown," Garry Trudeau jokes. His new book, ‘Yuge!,’ is a collection of 30 years of comic strips featuring Trump as a character. Also, Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy offer a pessimistic view of human nature in ‘Westworld,’ HBO's futuristic TV series about a theme park that allows tourists to act out their Wild West fantasies.

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