Interviews By Topic

Jacqueline Woodson

Author Jacqueline Woodson writes the kind of “black girl narrative” that didn’t exist when she was younger — and she’s always wished she had to read.More

Wooden Japanese figures

Author Min Jin Lee grew up Korean-American and she thought she knew her ancestors.  But when she moved to Tokyo, she discovered a history she didn’t know. The history of Koreans in Japan.More

 Kazuo Ishiguro

Kazuo Ishiguro just won the Nobel prize. Here's the best stuff he's said to us.More

Plastic crochet corals from the "Crochet Coral Reef" project by Christine and Margaret Wertheim and the Institute For Figuring.

What if the geometric structure of the universe has been hidden, for centuries, in crochet?More

The beauty of nature.

Frank Wilczek is a Nobel Prize-winning physicist at MIT. He's kind of obsessed, in his own way, with understanding the universe. Specifically, he’s interested in what he calls “the beautiful question." Is the universe naturally, inherently beautiful?More

Torah and jad - exhibits in Big Synagogue Museum, Wlodawa - Poland. (CC BY 2.5)

Sometimes you can take math too far. Dig too deep. And end up drowned in your own numbers. This is a story of one famous mathematician’s obsession with the ancient and mystical and numerical world of the Kabbalah.More

"Prayers for the Stolen" by Jennifer Clement

The recipient of the 2017 Nobel Prize in Literature recommends Jennifer Clement's novel about teenage girls surviving the violence of cartel-controlled Mexican border villages in "Prayers for the Stolen."More

Ulixes mosaic at the Bardo Museum in Tunis, Tunisia. 2nd century AD.

Daniel Mendelsohn was surprised—and unnerved—when his 81-year father enrolled in his seminar on "The Odyssey." And then delighted to see how his dad’s cranky comments excited his students. The experience also brought Daniel closer to his dad.More

paint brushes

Humanities programs are under siege. Their budgets are getting slashed as critics say schools should focus on job skills. But essayist Mark Slouka believes this is a tragic mistake.More

Mexican American/Raza studies student Pricila from the film Precious Knowledge.

Teachers Curtis Acosta and Jose Gonzalez explain the origins of Tucson's Mexican-American Studies program—and how their personal histories in school led them to teach these courses.More

a chalkboard

Caryn McKechnie didn’t like high school, but now she’s a college senior working on her teaching certificate. She went back to her high school to interview her favorite teacher. And that teacher? He left the public schools altogether.More

listening intently

A listener reminds us that it wasn't just teenage boys listening to Pink Floyd in 1973. More

Welcome to TTBOOKLY

In Anne's note this week, how a former teacher inspired a future one, despite a deck stacked against young educators. More

Blurred, glitchy, technicolor photo of Philip K. Dick's head

During the last two years of his life, Philip K. Dick tried to make sense of a series of strange visionary experiences. Jonathan Lethem explains how these events changed Dick's life.More

Philip K. Dick sitting in chair

Jonathan Lethem considers Philip K. Dick one of his literary heroes.  Lethem talks about how Dick was able to combine his brilliant imagination with his original mainstream ambitions to produce the groundbreaking literary science fiction that he's known for.More

Anne R. Dick and Philip K. Dick

Anne R. Dick shares her memories ofher marriage to Philip K. Dick.More

hall of mirrors

The central question of Philip K. Dick's fiction is "What is reality?" Literary critic Umberto Rossi explains that Dick's work often contains many possible realities.More

John Carlos, Tommie Smith, and Peter Norman at the 1968 Olympic games.

Before "taking a knee," there was the fist. More