Arts and Culture

A powwow in 2015 at the Institute for American Indian Arts.

Tommy Orange's debut novel “There There” was one of the big breakout books of 2018. He told Steve that with his novel, he hoped to better represent modern Native Americans that have grown up living in cities.More

Terese Mailhot

Author Terese Mailhot's best-selling debut book "Heart Berries" is a slim, devastating memoir of a childhood filled with abuse, set on the Seabird Island Band in British Columbia. She reads a passage to demonstrate the lyric quality of her prose.More

Books on the shelf

David Treuer is Ojibwe from the Leech Lake Reservation. He’s a literature professor at the University of Southern California, as well as a writer and a novelist. And he does not believe in putting fiction into ethnic boxes.More

Kevin Goodan with all his brothers and step-father this summer.

Do you have to be Native American to write Native American fiction? Kevin Goodan grew up among the Salish people. His brothers and stepfather are tribal members. But Kevin is white.More

The IAIA campus

A new wave of Native writers is coming of age. And at the center of it is a one-of-a-kind MFA program at the IAIA, in Santa Fe. Director Jennifer Foerster told Charles that the goal is to rewrite the literary landscape.More

Person at the Institute for American Indian Arts.

A wide range of writers — now celebrated with commercial and critical success — work to celebrate an evolving literary canon without limiting it. More

Paul Wendell Jr.

Rapper Tall Paul uses hip-hop to reclaim his Native language—and he's not the only musician remixing Native culture.More

Antigone

Writer, classicist, and stand-up comic Natalie Haynes makes a strong case for reading ancient Greek and Roman literature in the modern age.More

Circe

Circe, the all-powerful goddess from Homer’s “The Odyssey,” is known for turning men into swine, and for her mastery of potions. The artwork “Circe,” imagined by Romare Bearden, is a black woman surrounded by mystical animals and a skull, wearing West African garb with a calm but defiant look on her face.More

Women Who Rule

It's common in literary and historical accounts of powerful women to make them out to be villains — witches, demons, succubi, changelings — or erase them entirely. Historian Kara Cooney, author Madeline Miller, Religious scholar Serenity Young, and classics scholar Emily Wilson talk about why that might be.More

Teens on stage

Charles Monroe-Kane recently sat down to talk with the founder of the "Louder Than A Bomb" youth poetry — poet Kevin Coval — as well as two high school poets — Luis Carranza and Kee Stein — to hear more about how poetry is empowering teens.More

Angie Thomas

The hit young adult author on how she channeled feelings in the wake of a tragedy into her debut novel, "The Hate U Give."More

British writer Martin Amis is 68 years old. He’s written 14 novels, hundreds of essays, memoirs, even a screen play. But he has strong feelings about writers who work past their prime. So he feels the clock ticking — is it time to pack it in? When will he know?More

Ma Dukes and J Dilla

James Dewitt Yancey – also known as J Dilla — was a hip hop super-producer and pioneering beat-maker. J Dilla died at just 32 years old, and worked right up until the end, making music and creating beats from his hospital bed. His mother was there for every bit of it.More

broken heart

Every week, Cheryl Strayed and Steve Almond host the popular "Dear Sugars" podcast, where they read listener letters and give relationship advice. Sometimes, they have to parse the questions people think they're asking from the ones simmering beneath the surface.More

Choose something from 2018 and leave it behind.

Anne shares a yearly ritual for leaving behind something you regret, and moving into the new year a little bit lighter. More

David Giffels and his dad

A few years ago, David Giffels took on an unusual woodworking project — he started building his own coffin. With his 80-year-old father. But after losing his mother and best friend suddenly, his woodworking project took on a whole new meaning.
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"The Dark Is Rising" by Susan Cooper

Wizarding fiction didn't start with "Harry Potter," says the author of "H is for Hawk." Every year, MacDonald reads this tale of a boy who finds out he's one of the "old ones," part of a series from author Susan Cooper. She says it reconnects her with a sense of wonder inspired by what might lurk beneath the surface of the seen world.More

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