Journalist Evan Osnos talks about the Silicon Valley survivalists who are stockpiling food and weapons and investing in luxury underground bunkers. "They feel a sense of fragility in our politics," he says. Osnos has also been writing about Trump.
Journalist Stephen Kinzer's book, ‘True Flag,’ explains how the Spanish-American War launched an ongoing debate about America's role in the world. Kinzer has also been writing about President Trump. Book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews ‘A Really Good Day,’ by Ayelet Waldman.
In the '60s, the CIA began a secret program that aimed to curb Communism by arming and training local fighters in Laos. Author Joshua Kurlantzick calls it "the largest covert operation in US history." Kevin Whitehead reviews a new double album from jazz trio BassDrumBone. Film critic David Edelstein reviews ‘The Founder,’ starring Michael Keaton, about the founder of McDonalds.
Journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones says school segregation will continue to exist in America "as long as individual parents continue to make choices that only benefit their own children." Comedian and commentator Zahra Noorbakhsh often jokes about being a "pork-eating, alcohol-drinking Muslim, but after Trump's election she finds herself wanting to connect with her religious traditions. Rachel Bloom talks to 'Fresh Air' producer Ann Marie Baldonado about ‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,’ the CW musical comedy series, now in its second season, that she co-created and stars in.
Writer Zadie Smith talks about nostalgia and why she likes talking to people with whom she disagrees. Her new novel is 'Swing Time.' [Originally broadcast November 2016]
Norm Eisen and Richard Painter discuss Trump's business conflicts. The new president will be "violating the constitutional conflicts clause ... as soon as he takes the oath of office," Eisen says.
Khalid Latif is one of the people profiled in ‘The Secret Life of Muslims,’ a digital series about Islamophobia. He is also the first Muslim chaplain at New York University. Comedian and commentator Zahra Noorbakhsh often jokes about being a "pork-eating, alcohol-drinking, married-to-an-atheist" Muslim, but after Trump’s election she finds herself wanting to connect with her religious traditions. Commentator Mat Johnson looks back on Obama’s legacy.
Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich says that for Mormon women living in 19th century Utah, "plural marriages" were empowering in complicated ways. Rachel Bloom talks to ‘Fresh Air’ producer Ann Marie Baldonado about the CW musical comedy series, now in its second season, that she co-created and stars in. Bloom plays a woman who follows an ex across the country.
Journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones says school segregation will continue to exist in America "as long as individual parents continue to make choices that only benefit their own children."
Bridges talks about growing up in an acting family and the cult of 'Big Lebowski' fans. TV critic David Bianculli reviews the new Netflix adaptation of Lemony Snicket’s ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events.’ NFL and MLB sportscaster Joe Buck talks about why he rubs some fans the wrong way, and his dad, hall-of-fame broadcaster Jack Buck.
TV critic David Bianculli reviews the new Netflix show based on ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’ by Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler). Handler spoke to Terry Gross in 2001 and in 2012, when he brought his accordion to the studio. Also, we remember celebrated Indian actor Om Puri, who died last week. David Edelstein reviews the German comedy ‘Toni Erdmann.’
New Yorker staff writer Michael Specter talks about the dramatic advances in genetic research. He says there are new tools that allow scientists "to edit genes in the way a word processor would edit words," so they can alter, delete, and rearrange the DNA of living organisms. Critic at large John Powers reviews '20th Century Women,' the new film written and directed by Mike Mills.
Buck's new memoir, ‘Lucky Bastard,’ details his experiences in sports and life, including his addiction to hair-plug transplants. When it comes to announcing, he says, "I don't have a rooting interest for either side." Rock critic Ken Tucker reviews Natalie Hemby’s album ‘Puxico.’
Author Lisa Servon says a growing number of Americans are finding alternatives to traditional banks, including prepaid debit cards, check-cashing centers, and payday lenders. Her book is ‘The Unbanking of America.’ Also, we remember activist and jazz writer Nat Hentoff with an excerpt of his 1986 interview.
Bridges talks about the lessons he learned from his father, actor Lloyd Bridges, the cult of ‘Big Lebowski’ fans, and how he calms his nerves on set. Maureen Corrigan reviews Betty Fussell’s book of essays, ‘Eat, Live, Love, Die.’
'Hamilton' creator Lin-Manuel Miranda talks about Disney, code-switching as a kid in New York, and addressing Vice President-elect Mike Pence at a recent performance. ’La La Land’ hearkens back to Hollywood’s glory days of song and dance. Director Damien Chazelle says he aimed to make a movie even musical skeptics would love.
Gethard tells stories of hitting rock bottom in his new one-man off-Broadway show, which is billed as a comedy about "suicide, depression, alcoholism and all the other funniest parts of life." [Originally broadcast October 2016] Film critic David Edelstein reviews ‘Paterson.’
‘La La Land’ hearkens back to Hollywood’s glory days of song and dance. Chazelle says he aimed to make a movie even musical skeptics would love.
Omar Saif Ghobash has written a book of letters to his sons, urging them to find knowledge, wisdom and understanding in all cultures and to reject hate and extremism. Ghobash is the United Arab Emirates ambassador to Russia. Also, we remember world religions scholar Huston Smith. He spoke to Terry Gross in 1996.
The ‘Hamilton’ creator talks about making mixtapes in the ‘90s, code-switching as a kid in New York, and addressing Vice President-elect Mike Pence at a recent performance.
Jeff Ross says he learned to "dish it out and take it" as a kid in Newark, N.J. He says that ideally a celebrity roast is "like a party where everybody goes and has a good time." [Originally broadcast September 2016]
Film critic David Edelstein, TV critic David Bianculli, critic at-large John Powers, rock critic Ken Tucker and jazz critic Kevin Whitehead share their picks for the best of 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. [Originally broadcast November 2016]
For the first time since hosting 'The Late Show,' Colbert talks to Terry Gross about shedding his 'Colbert Report' character and becoming comfortable playing himself. [Originally broadcast November 2016] Also, this year marked the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. Classical music critic Lloyd Schwartz reviews a recent CD that celebrates Shakespeare in words and music.
Carrie Fisher, the actress who became a pop culture icon for her performance as Princess Leia in ‘Star Wars,’ has died at age 60. She spoke to Terry Gross in 1990, 2004 and most recently in 2016 for her memoir, ‘The Princess Diarist.’ Rock critic Ed Ward reflects on The Ramones' self-titled first album, which debuted 40 years ago.