The New York Public Library Podcast

The New York Public Library Podcast

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Join The New York Public Library and your favorite writers, artists, and thinkers for smart talks and provocative conversations from the nation’s cultural capital.

Episodes

Art Spiegelman on How He Sees Himself, Becoming a Devotee to Another Artist, and the Artist After Art  

Art Spiegelman moved readers with Maus, the renowned graphic novel recounting his father’s experience of the Holocaust. Now, Spiegelman has brought to our attention the forgotten Si Lewen masterpiece, The Parade, a wordless meditation on the cycle of war. He joins NYPL’s Paul Holdengraber for a discussion on his work past and present. If you’re curious about some of the images discussed in this episode, visit nypl.org/podcast where you can find a link to a video of the discussion.

Our Compelling Interests: A Panel on Diversity and Democracy  

This week we’re proud to present a compelling panel discussion on diversity and democracy. The discussion features participants from education, government, journalism, and non-profit sectors, with moderator Brian Lehrer of WNYC. At a time when American society is swiftly transforming, discussion sheds light on how our differences will only become more critical to our shared success.

Rebecca Solnit, Joshua Jelly-Schapiro, Garnette Cadogan, Suketu Mehta, and Luc Sante on Phone Maps, Libraries, and Walking  

This week we’re bringing you a conversation with the minds behind Nonstop Metropolis: A New York City Atlas. Writer and activist Rebecca Solnit, geographer Joshua Jelly-Schapiro, essayist Garnette Cadogan, and authors Suketu Mehta and Luc Sante participate in a discussion about the layers of vitality and diversity, but also inequity and erasure that make up this thriving metropolis

Michael Chabon and Richard Price on Plot, Secular Judaism, and Remembering to Make Stuff Up  

Lying on your deathbed, how does the story of your life unfold? Michael Chabon's new novel, Moonglow, unfolds surrounded by this question, in a story both imagined and researched, fictionalized and biographical. Joined by author Richard Price, the two explore the story of Chabon’s own life, and the life of his stories.

Neil Gaiman Reads "A Christmas Carol" (Rebroadcast)  

This week we’re rebroadcasting one of our favorite episodes: acclaimed author Neil Gaiman delivering a memorable reading of A Christmas Carol. You’ll hear Gaiman reading from the Library’s own rare copy, which includes edits and prompts Charles Dickens wrote in his own hand for his unique readings 150 years ago. Joined by writer and BBC researcher Molly Oldfield, Gaiman’s reading of the classic tale as the great author intended has become a New York Public Library tradition.

Paul Krugman on Fake News, Lying Candidates, and What Public Intellectuals Need to Do  

This week we’re thrilled to present a thought-provoking lecture from New York Times columnist Paul Krugman. He recently came to the library to deliver the annual Robert B. Silvers lecture, and gave a stirring talk he titled “Public Discourse In A Time Of Crazy.” Krugman is introduced by Robert Silvers himself, editor of The New York Review of Books.

James McBride on James Brown and NYC  

This week we're joined by musician and author James McBride, who returns to the Library to mark the paperback publication of his book,Kill 'Em and Leave: Searching for James Brown and the American Soul.He's joined by journalist and author Philip Gourevitch for a conversation the covers the tensions and contradictions of the American experience: between North and South, black and white, rich and poor.

Sarah Sze on Scale, Gravity, and Value  

Sarah Sze is an internationally acclaimed artist, whose signature visual language challenges the static nature of sculpture and questions the value society places on objects. She joined NYPL's Paul Holdengraber this spring for a conversation spanning her body of work and what it says about space, architecture, art, and most importantly, how humans relate to all three.

Robbie Robertson on Six Nations Inspiration, Bob Dylan, and Goals of the Soul  

This week we’re bringing you a conversation with songwriter and guitarist Robbie Robertson. As an original member of the seminal music group the Band, Robertson has helped shape American music and culture profoundly. He’s joined by Stevie Van Zandt of the E Street Band for reflective conversation on the history of rock and roll and the way it continues to shape their lives.

Wole Soyinka on Hollywood, Reparations, and Morgan Freeman  

For this week’s episode we’re bringing you a conversation between two Nigerian authors whose works include plays, novels, poetry, essays and more. Chris Abani is known as an international voice on humanitarianism, art, ethics and our shared political responsibility. Wole Soyinka won of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1986 and has received accolades for his work in writing and advocating for human rights. The two recently sat down at the Library for a on the intersections between art, writing, activism, and politics.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Margo Jefferson on Understanding Uncle Tom's Cabin  

For this week’s episode, we’re bringing you a conversation between two public intellectuals who have contributed immensely to our understanding of history, literature, cultural criticism, and politics, Macarthur Fellow Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Pulitzer Prize winner Margo Jefferson. In 2006, Gates and Jefferson sat down at the Library for a special event on Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin co-presented with The Studio Museum in Harlem.

Marina Abramović and Debbie Harry on Doubt and Diaries  

This week we’re joined by two legendary women from very different artistic backgrounds, performance artist Marina Abramović and rock singer Debbie Harry of Blondie. The two share stories and insights from their lives and art as they discuss Abramovic’s new memoir, Walk Through Walls.

Tim Wu on How the Internet Is Not Really Free  

This week, we’re bringing you a conversation with author and policy advisor Tim Wu. In his new book The Attention Merchants, Wu makes the case truly paying attention is both incredibly rare and incredibly valuable. He’s joined in conversation by conversation by writer, documentarian, and Professor of Media Theory and Digital Economics at CUNY/Queens, Douglas Rushkoff.

Margaret Atwood on Shakespeare in the 21st Century and on YouTube  

Four hundred years after William Shakespeare’s death, Margaret Atwood retells one of his most beloved plays, The Tempest, with a dark and fantastical interpretation in her new book, Hag-Seed. This week on the podcast, Atwood is joined in conversation by celebrated actress Fiona Shaw for a discussion of the Bard and his influence on their work.

Mona Eltahawy and Yasmine El Rashidi on White Feminism and the Privilege to Protest  

The original Antigone may be from antiquity, but our current era abounds with women fighting unabashedly for what they believe. This week on the podcast, we welcome journalist, feminist, and author of Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution, Mony Eltahawy. As you’ll hear is a force to be reckoned with and an embodiment of this spirit. She is joined by yet another fierce and powerful author and journalist, Yasmine El Rashidi.

Sally Mann on Cy Twombly and the Babushkas Who Saved Russian Art  

Perhaps the most permanent - and essential - character in Sally Mann’s work is that of place: the American South. Her home of Lexington, VA is not just the set for her most powerful work; it is also the place where she met fellow artist and friend, Cy Twombly. The photographs from her new book, Remembered Light: Cy Twombly in Lexington, are featured in an exhibition at Gagosian Gallery; and she had many stories to tell when she sat down for a conversation NYPL’s Paul Holdengräber.

Yanis Varoufakis and Noam Chomsky on Money and The Sickest Joke in the History of Humankind  

Yanis Varoufakis considers himself a politician by necessity, not by choice. An economist and academic by training, he became Greece’s finance minister amidst the country's financial crisis, creating an image for himself both beloved and reviled. He came to the Library last April to discuss this complicated role and his recent book, And the Weak Suffer What They Must?: Europe's Crisis and America's Economic Future. He was joined in conversation by renowned academic and theorist Noam Chomsky.

Alan Cumming on Memory, Gore Vidal, and Monica Lewinsky  

He enthralls audiences with his colorful roles, but Alan Cumming’s real-life adventures pack just as much punch. This week we’re bringing you the first event from our Fall LIVE series as Paul Holdengräber and the award-winning actor in a conversation as whimsical and mischievous as Cumming’s new book of photographs and essays, You Gotta Get Bigger Dreams: My Life in Stories and Pictures.

Edwidge Danticat on Silence, Bridging Audiences, and Participating in Stories  

This week, we’re going back into the archives to bring you a conversation with Hatian-American novelist and short story writer Edwidge Danticat. When she came the Library in 2010, she discussed her book CREATE DANGEROUSLY: The Immigrant Artist at Work with NYPL’s Paul Holdengraber. Their conversation covered central questions of her book including what it means to be an immigrant and an artist, and to bo be working out of one’s homeland.

Werner Herzog on Death, Executioners, and Advice for Filmmakers  

This week, we celebrate legendary film director Werner Herzog’s birthday with a thrilling conversation from the archives. In 2012, Herzog came to the Library to discuss his most recent film, “Into the Abyss,” as well as his four-part television series, “Death Row.” In this conversation with NYPL’s Paul Holdengraber, Herzog talks about crime, human nature, and why he stands so firmly against capital punishment.

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