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Christopher Lydon

Howard French on Africa in a Chinese Century (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

Fifty years almost to the day after the catastrophic assassination of Patrice Lumumba in the Congo, the journalist Howard French is sketching an alternative path ahead for African development today.

Lydia Davis: Miniatures from a Mind on Fire (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Christopher Lydon

Theo Cote photoLydia Davis keeps popping up in conversation as a favorite writer of our favorite writers -- Rae Armantrout, the Pulitzer poet, among t...

Mohammed Hanif's AfPak: A Case of Exploding Absurdities (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Christopher Lydon

Mohammed Hanif, the Pakistani novelist, is observing from Karachi that "even the believers" don't believe in the war in Afghanistan anymore.

The Iraq and Af-Pak Wars, at the Receiving End with War Correspondent Nir Rosen (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

Ghaith Abdul Ahad photo Nir Rosen is the rare war reporter (not unlike Anthony Shadid) who covers Iraq and Afghanistan as if there are articulate peop...

David Bromwich on the "Disappointment in Obama" (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Lydon

David Bromwich, the Sterling Professor of English at Yale, reads Barack Obama like a book -- as if he were a book, that is. With the novelist Zadie ...

Economist Mark Blyth: 2011 Will Be Worse... and Life Will Go On (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Lydon

Mark Blyth is in the pub tonight, played by Sean Connery, as usual, and demonstrating again how far a man can go in political economy just by talking ...

Mark Blyth: On Ireland, the Circle Will Not Be Squared (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

Mark Blyth, of Austerity fame and the Watson Institute, has a Scot's vernacular gift for clarifying economics. Is the situation explosive? "You've ...

Reading Obama's Mind: Pragmatism and Its Perils (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Lydon

If there is a problem with Barack Obama's thinking, his "intellectual biographer" James Kloppenberg is saying on the morning after Obama's mid-term "h...

Noam Chomsky: the American Socrates on an Upbeat (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Lydon

Noam Chomsky, after all these years, retains the power to shock -- in the bright title of his new collection, Hopes and Prospects, and with what sound...

V. S. Naipaul's "Gloomy Clarity" About Africa and Himself (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Christopher Lydon

V. S. Naipaul, in the winter of his long writing life, doesn't disguise his melancholy or his frailty. Still, his inquisitorial eye and his magic with a prose sentence have not abandoned him, nor the organ tones of his mesmerizing voice.

Daniel Kehlmann's Fame: The Self in the Cyber Century (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Christopher Lydon

Daniel Kehlmann is a very funny, very philosophical young fictionist from Germany who will make you want more like him -- and more playfully engaging ...

Andrew Bacevich: how war without end became the rule (VIDEO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Lydon

Andrew Bacevich is the soldier turned writer who's still unlearning and puncturing the Washington Rules of national security. The rules have turned i...

Real India: Ashis Nandy's post-colonial "intimate enemies" (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

NEW DELHI -- Ashis Nandy has a big idea about "loss and recovery" in the history of colonialism. The bumpersticker version is that the conquerors and...

Namita Gokhale: the revolution will be written! (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

Listen to the conversation here: NEW DELHI -- Namita Gokhale -- novelist, publisher, sparkplug of the annual Jaipur Literature Festival -- says the...

Tarun Tejpal's heart-ache for "the idea of India" (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

NEW DELHI -- Tarun Tejpal -- muckraker, editor and novelist -- is speaking with professional zeal and a certain generational remorse about his remark...

Walking the Slum Side of Bangalore (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

BANGALORE -- Brinda Adige, a self-starting social activist, in yellow sari, is our guide to the slum side of Bangalore and the virtual canyon betw...

Real India: At Koshy's Cafe, The Talk of Bangalore (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Lydon

"... And our nation, though it has no drinking water, electricity, sewage system, public transportation, sense of hygiene, discipline, courtesy or ...

Real India: A Historian's Cautions on "The Indian Century" (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

Ramachandra Guha, the provocative, critical historian of India After Gandhi, has vitality and charisma to match his country's. Writing and talking with fire-hose force, he's come to mirror India's sense of it's 63-year-old self.

The New India: Social Entrepreneurship as a Family Affair

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

Today, Neelam Chhiber and her husband Jacob Mathew are giving me one family's story of the improvisational networking and social entrepreneurship that are all the rage in digital India.

Graham Robb's Paris: 18 Arrested Explosions (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Christopher Lydon

Graham Robb is making France irresistible again. His new book, Parisians, delivers nearly a score of long anecdotes about famous people in real scenes beyond imagining.

Bill McKibben: Coming into View, Another Eaarth (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Green
Christopher Lydon

Bill McKibben in conversation is counting a few of the ways that earth has changed since Apollo 8 Commander Frank Borman on his fourth turn around the...

David Remnick: The "Race" Route over Obama's "Bridge" (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Christopher Lydon

David Remnick is hanging out and indulging me here, late on a book-tour evening, in a little polite rattling of the racial premise of his Obama story,...

William Dalrymple: the Af-Pak Fiasco "on its last legs" (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Lydon

William Dalrymple is drawing on a deep well of personal and imperial history in his stark clarification of our American comeuppance in Afghanistan. ...

Anthony Shadid: Questions a Reporter Asks Himself (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Christopher Lydon

I find it almost painful to come to the States... I tell you, part of me is convinced that the legacy of this war is that Americans come away thinki...

Vijay Iyer's Life in Music: "Striving is the Backstory..." (AUDIO)

Christopher Lydon | Posted 05.25.2011 | Arts
Christopher Lydon

Vijay Iyer brings rare stuff to jazz piano, starting with a Brahmin Indian name and heritage, and a Yale degree in physics. Gujarati stick dances and ...