Friday, January 27, 2012

Programs for the Week of 1/30

I’ll be on vacation all next week and we put our heads together to come up with a line-up from the Here on Earth archives we think might be

Jean’s Pick of the Week (watch video): An Open Door: Jewish Rescue in the Philippines: It’s not often that you come across a Holocaust story that has not yet been told. But, thanks to Here on Earth producer Marika Suval who discovered Filipino filmmaker Noel “Sonny” Izon, last Monday’s show broke the story of 1,200 Jews who were rescued by the people of the Philippines at a time when most other nations, including the United States, turned them down. What’s more, the story was corroborated by several listeners who called in to testify that they had first-hand knowledge of some of the very Jews who were rescued. It was inspiring and exciting.

Monday: Tree of Life (Encore): Terrence Malick's ambitious and controversial film is up for an Academy Award this year. It was both booed and cheered before it won the Palme d'Or at Cannes. The film raises deep existential questions about the meaning of life, death, and pain, and we managed to find the perfect guests to talk about it. My hunch is that a lot of the people who walked out on The Tree of Life might stick around to hear what Barbara Newman and David Sterritt had to say about it.

Tuesday: Healing the Heart of Democracy (Encore): Parker Palmer is always good for what ails us, but never more so than right now as we hit the shoals of this year’s presidential election. In his new book, designed to re-invigorate American democracy in its most localized settings, and to connect it to those larger global movements that both inspire and disappoint us, he spells out what we can do to form habits of the heart conducive to embracing democracy's endless conflicts.

Wednesday: The Runaway Little Free Libraries Project (Encore): Rick Brooks and Todd Bol caught a tiger by the tail when they decided to promote worldwide literacy and build communities one Little Free Library at a time. This was far and away one of our most popular programs of the season.

Thursday: American Born Chinese (Encore): I had great fun with Gene Luen Yang, the creator of this graphic novel which Publisher’s Weekly describes as "more than just the story of a Chinese-American childhood: it's a fable for every kid born into…a life they wish they could escape."

Friday: Twain's Feast (Encore): I loved this slightly far out Food Friday show about the attack of culinary homesickness Mark Twain suffered while traveling through Europe during the winter of 1879, eating bad hotel food. His fantasy menu, which included more than 80 mouth watering items, tells us so much about the astonishing variety of local specialties Americans regularly feasted on when the country was still wild.

I’ll be back on Monday, February 6, with a program about Swedish Nobel laureate Tomas Transtromer I’ve been longing to do for a long time. You come too!


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