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Preview: Writers & Company from CBC Radio

Writers and Company from CBC Radio


George Saunders on his Man Booker Prize-winning novel, Lincoln in the Bardo

Sun, 22 Oct 2017 04:00:00 GMT

George Saunders has won the 2017 Man Booker Prize for his debut novel, "Lincoln in the Bardo." In April, Saunders discussed the book with Eleanor Wachtel at a sold-out event in Toronto.

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Spanish novelist Javier Marías on secrets and betrayal — in politics and fiction

Sun, 15 Oct 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Spain's most celebrated contemporary writer talks to Eleanor Wachtel about his country's dark past, his own family history, and his new novel that draws on both, "Thus Bad Begins."

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Nobel Prize for Literature winner Kazuo Ishiguro on his novels of 'great emotional force'

Sun, 08 Oct 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor Wachtel speaks with the Japanese-British author and recipient of the 2017 Nobel Prize for Literature about his novels "The Buried Giant" and "Never Let Me Go."

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Daniel Mendelsohn on his journey with his father through Homer’s Odyssey

Sun, 01 Oct 2017 04:00:00 GMT

In his memoir "An Odyssey," American writer and critic Daniel Mendelsohn gives an account of what happened when his elderly father sat in on his university seminar on Homer’s epic poem.

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Haifaa Al Mansour on Mary Shelley, the woman behind Frankenstein

Sun, 24 Sep 2017 04:00:00 GMT

In her new film "Mary Shelley," Saudi Arabian filmmaker Haifaa Al Mansour explores the passion and pain that led the teenage author to write her groundbreaking novel, "Frankenstein." Eleanor spoke to Al Mansour at the Toronto International Film Festival.

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Kei Miller maps the intersections of race, class and privilege in Jamaica

Sun, 17 Sep 2017 04:00:00 GMT

The Jamaican poet, novelist and essayist spoke to Eleanor Wachtel about his award-winning collection "The Cartographer Tries to Map a Way to Zion," and his imaginative new novel, "Augustown."

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John le Carré on his legacy as a spy-turned-novelist

Sun, 10 Sep 2017 04:00:00 GMT

The master of the political thriller talks to Eleanor Wachtel about his storied career as both a spy and a writer, and discusses his new book, "A Legacy of Spies," which sees the return of his most iconic character, George Smiley.

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Philip Roth on his life in fiction

Sun, 03 Sep 2017 04:00:00 GMT

From "Goodbye, Columbus" to "The Plot Against America," the celebrated novelist reflects on his literary identities, fame, family, controversy and growing old in this conversation with Eleanor Wachtel from 2009.

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Cartoonist Lynda Barry on reclaiming the art of child's play

Sun, 27 Aug 2017 04:00:00 GMT

In this conversation from 2009, Eleanor talks to American cartoonist Lynda Barry about her Filipino heritage, her friendship with Matt Groening, and her darkly funny and moving work, which revolves around the lives of children.

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Graphic novelist Reinhard Kleist on Germany's refugees, then and now

Sun, 20 Aug 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor speaks to the award-winning German comic book artist about his wide-ranging subjects — from Johnny Cash; to a man who escaped Auschwitz by boxing; to Samia Yusuf Omar, a Somalian Olympic runner who drowned trying to reach Europe.

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Margarethe von Trotta on telling the story of Germany through the eyes of women

Sun, 13 Aug 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor spoke with revered German filmmaker Margarethe von Trotta as part of our 2016 special series, "At the Centre of Europe: A Changing Germany".

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Edna O'Brien on fear, dreams and LSD

Sun, 06 Aug 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor Wachtel speaks to the author of "The Country Girls" Trilogy and "The Little Red Chairs" about the power of dreams; her homeland, Ireland; and hallucinogens.

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Tracy K. Smith on life, death, poetry and outer space

Sun, 30 Jul 2017 04:00:00 GMT

In this conversation from 2016, Eleanor talks to the new Poet Laureate of the United States, Tracy K. Smith. Her last collection, "Life on Mars", won a Pulitzer Prize. Her memoir, "Ordinary Light", explores race, faith and her relationship with her mom.

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Patricia Grace on telling the stories of New Zealand's Indigenous people

Sun, 23 Jul 2017 04:00:00 GMT

In this conversation from 2003, Eleanor talks to Patricia Grace — one of New Zealand's most celebrated Maori writers.

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Edward Said's ideas about power and identity still resonate today

Sun, 16 Jul 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor spoke with Edward Said, the eminent literary and cultural critic, in 1993. The author of "Orientalism" and "Culture and Imperialism" discusses Western attitudes toward the East, and explores the connection between politics and literature.

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Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie on why she can't stay silent

Sun, 09 Jul 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Nigerian-American author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie spoke to Eleanor in 2009 about her Orange Prize-winning novel "Half of a Yellow Sun", her story collection "The Thing Around Your Neck", and how Nigeria's civil war continues to haunt her life and fiction.

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How Canada made Michael Ondaatje a writer

Sun, 02 Jul 2017 04:00:00 GMT

In this conversation from 1998, Eleanor talks to Canadian literary master Michael Ondaatje - author of "The English Patient" - about "Handwriting," a collection of poems about loss, landscape and the power of history in Sri Lanka.

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Arundhati Roy on love, war and the fragility of happiness

Sun, 25 Jun 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Indian writer and activist Arundhati Roy joins Eleanor to discuss "The Ministry of Utmost Happiness", the long-awaited second novel from the author of the Booker Prize winner, "The God of Small Things".

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Sherman Alexie on his bittersweet relationship with his mother

Sun, 18 Jun 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor speaks with Native American writer Sherman Alexie about his memoir, "You Don't Have to Say You Love Me." The book focuses on his complicated relationship with his mother, and his difficult upbringing on a Spokane reservation in Washington state.

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Naturalist Charles Foster says living like a badger helped him understand humans

Sun, 11 Jun 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor speaks with English writer, professor, veterinarian and barrister, Charles Foster. His latest book, "Being a Beast", is a quest to see the world through the senses of five different animal species.

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British novelist Rose Tremain on love, heroism and the Swiss soul

Sun, 04 Jun 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor speaks with Orange Prize-winning author Rose Tremain about her latest novel, "The Gustav Sonata" — an exploration of political and personal neutrality set in Switzerland before and after the Second World War.

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Novelist Tayeb Salih on culture and conflict in the Sudan

Sun, 28 May 2017 04:00:00 GMT

From 2002, Eleanor's conversation with the late Sudanese novelist Tayeb Salih, one of the foremost writers of the Arab world. His 1967 novel "Season of Migration to the North" has been called the most important Arabic novel of the 20th Century.

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Helen Macdonald on grief, dreams and birds of prey

Sun, 21 May 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Eleanor speaks with England's Helen Macdonald about her best-selling memoir, "H is for Hawk". In this interview from 2015, Macdonald discusses how she dealt with her father's sudden death by training a goshawk — the fiercest, wildest bird of prey.

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Voice and identity in America: Francisco Goldman, Imbolo Mbue and David Treuer

Sun, 14 May 2017 04:00:00 GMT

Francisco Goldman, Imbolo Mbue and David Treuer reflect on cultural collision in the United States. Eleanor sat down with the three prize-winning writers on stage at the Blue Metropolis Literary Festival in Montreal.

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Anita Desai - winner of the 2017 Blue Metropolis International Literary Festival's Grand Prix

Sun, 07 May 2017 04:00:00 GMT

In front of a live audience in Montreal, at the Blue Metropolis International Literary Festival, Eleanor speaks with the festival's Grand Prix winner, Anita Desai, about her life and the award-winning books she's written over more than fifty years.

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Paula Fox on tackling the book of her own life

Sun, 30 Apr 2017 04:00:00 GMT

A look back at Eleanor's conversation with American novelist and children's book author Paula Fox from 2002. Paula Fox died last month at age 93. In this interview, she discusses her memoir, "Borrowed Finery".

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