Fresh Air

Weekdays, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

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

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

Comic W. Kamau Bell finds humor in the parts of America that make him uncomfortable. Speaking to Fresh Air's Terry Gross, Bell likens his new CNN series, United Shades of America, to a travel show that takes him "to all sorts of different places that I [am] either afraid to go, or you wouldn't expect me to go."

"I've always been a fan of [Parts Unknown host Anthony] Bourdain," Bell says. "I always thought if I had a show like that, you would replace food with racism. Instead of sampling the food, I would sample the racism or the culture."

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

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

In the "Prologue" to her 2012 autobiography, Country Girl, Edna O'Brien tells readers about being tested for deafness a few years ago at a National Health clinic in London where she lives.

O'Brien was told by the technician there that in terms of her hearing, "she's a broken piano." That dismissive phrase haunted O'Brien and, somewhat in defiance, she wrote what turned out to be a spectacular memoir.

Growing up, comics Nadia Manzoor and Radhika Vaz never dreamed that they would one day co-star in a sketch-comedy series about two women in Brooklyn.

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

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

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.

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

At 46, former Daily Show correspondent Samantha Bee says she's not very concerned with what people think of her.

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

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

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

Brazil has been in the news a lot these days, but not for happy reasons. As it prepares to host the Olympics this August, the economy is tanking, the president is heading toward impeachment and the country has become ground zero for the Zika virus. All this is enough to make one recall Charles de Gaulle's famously dismissive remark, "Brazil is not a serious country."

"[T]here was no difference between men, in intelligence or race, so profound as the difference between the sick and the well."

That fairly familiar line, a mere fleeting perception from The Great Gatsby, is the bedrock wisdom of Charles Bock's beautiful and harrowing new novel, Alice & Oliver. Alice is a new mother in her 20s who, one day, out of the blue, coughs up bloody phlegm, collapses and is diagnosed with leukemia.

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

Editor's note: The following interview contains descriptions that some may find disturbing.

Forget "enhanced interrogation techniques" — Eric Fair says what he did as an interrogator in Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq was torture.

"The idea that there's interrogation, and then enhanced interrogation, and then torture — there is no middle ground," he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "Torture is an enhanced interrogation."

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.

Fresh Air Remembers Actress Patty Duke

Apr 1, 2016
Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

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

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The new documentary Everything Is Copy — about the late writer, director and journalist Nora Ephron — was written and directed by her son, Jacob Bernstein. The documentary, which debuted on HBO in March, shares the story of Ephron's life. Bernstein tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that the film's title comes from an Ephron family saying — "everything is copy," meaning that anything and everything that happens to you is fair game to write about.

Ray Romano became famous in the mid 1990s as the star of the sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond, which was loosely based on his life as a married man with a daughter and twin boys. After that show ended in 2005, he co-created and co-starred in TNT's Men of a Certain Age, about three friends dealing with middle age, and had a recurring role on NBC's Parenthood.

When You Become The Person You Hate On The Internet

Mar 29, 2016

I was feeling cheeky one afternoon when I posted to Facebook that the '90s hit "Breakfast at Tiffany's" was the worst song of all time. It had been nearly two decades since the release of that single — about a bickering couple who reconcile thanks to an Audrey Hepburn film — but I heard the chorus in passing that day, and it got stuck on this crazy-making loop in my brain.

Author Peggy Orenstein says that when it comes to sexuality, girls today are receiving mixed messages. Girls hear that "they're supposed to be sexy, they're supposed to perform sexually for boys," Orenstein tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross, "but that their sexual pleasure is unspoken."

While researching her new book, Girls & Sex, Orenstein spoke with more than 70 young women between the ages of 15 and 20 about their attitudes and early experiences with the full range of physical intimacy.

Nearly 80 years ago, about 2,800 Americans volunteered to fight in the Spanish Civil War. The war began in July 1936, when Gen. Francisco Franco led a fascist military coup against the the country's newly elected democratic government. It lasted until Franco's victory in 1939.

Journalist Adam Hochschild tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that "it was by far the largest number of Americans before or since who've ever joined somebody else's civil war."

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

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