Fresh Air

Monday-Thursday at 7pm
  • Hosted by Terry Gross

Opening the window on contemporary arts and issues with guests from worlds as diverse as literature and economics.  

Writer Julie Klausner conceived of her Hulu comedy series Difficult People with a dark vision in mind. She thought of what kind of show she'd want to create if she knew she only had weeks to live, and she went from there.

"I just intended to write a show that I would want to do if I were ... going to be hit by a bus in a couple weeks," Klausner tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "[And] that's sort of what came out."

What first grabs a reader about Mary Mann Hamilton's memoir, Trials of the Earth, is its backstory. Hamilton was born in Arkansas around 1866; her family ran a boarding house and at 18 she married one of the guests, an older Englishman named Frank Hamilton who claimed to have an aristocratic past.

Do people think about food more in times of scarcity than in times of plenty? Married culinary historians Jane Ziegelman and Andy Coe think so. Ziegelman and Coe are the authors of A Square Meal, which examines the impact of the country's decade-long Great Depression on American diets.

Ziegelman tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that the Depression was one of the "most important food moments" in U.S. history. Coe agrees: "The Great Depression was a time when Americans had food front and foremost in their minds and were worrying about it every day."

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

'It's A Playground': Meryl Streep On Acting With Abandon: In her new film, Streep plays Florence Foster Jenkins, a socialite who didn't let her less-than-great voice stop her from becoming an opera singer. Streep says she can relate to that kind of passion.

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Dave Davies in for Terry Gross.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "JULIUS CAESAR")

New York Times reporter Rukmini Callimachi is known for her in-depth reporting on terrorism and the Islamic State. Her recent jailhouse interview with Harry Sarfo, a German citizen who joined ISIS and trained in Syria before disavowing the group, revealed the organization's particular interest in recruits from Europe.

Meryl Streep works hard to sing badly in her new film, Florence Foster Jenkins. In it, she plays the title character, based on an actual heiress and socialite born in 1868, who devoted her life to music — despite the fact that she had a squeaky, screechy singing voice.

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

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TERRY GROSS, HOST:

When author Colson Whitehead first heard about the Underground Railroad as a child he imagined a subway beneath the earth that escaped slaves could ride to freedom. He tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that when he found out that it was not a literal train, he felt "a bit upset."

Copyright 2016 American Public Media. To see more, visit American Public Media.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

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TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

In February of 1974, Patty Hearst, the 19-year-old granddaughter of the wealthy newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst, was kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army, a small, armed revolutionary group with an incoherent ideology and unclear goals.

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

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Comedian Ali Wong is so committed to her work that she estimates that she performed on stage almost every day for 11 years before her daughter was born. In fact, she was 7 1/2 months pregnant when she filmed her first comedy special, Baby Cobra, for Netflix.

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