Bryan Fogel joins co-hosts Kate Wolf and Medaya Ocher to discuss his astonishing new film Icarus, which belongs on a shortlist of documentaries that fortuitously captured history in the making. The film began as an expose on Fogel as a guinea pig, taking performance enhancing drugs in preparation for a major cross-country bike race. However, the specialist who is assisting Bryan backs down and hands Bryan over to the head of Russia’s “anti-doping” team, Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov; who is, in fact, the mastermind behind Russia’s massive national doping program. Rodchenkov decides he's had enough and turns to Brian to protect him and assist in blowing the whistle on the biggest doping scandal in history. Icarus is a tale of friendship, heroism, and suspense; which also happens to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the dishonesty and corruption of Vladimir Putin’s regime. Also, LARB Radio’s own Eric Newman drops by to recommend Tom Atwood’s new photography book Kings and Queens in Their Castles, which portrays 160 LGBTQ subjects in their homes.
Cave Canem Award-winning Poet Imani Tolliver joins LARB's Janice Rhoshalle Littlejohn to read from, and talk about, her powerful new book, Runaway: A Memoir in Verse. The powerful, emotive conversation (recorded on Imani's birthday!) focuses on the redemptive role that verse, the community of poets, Howard University, The World Stage, coming out, and romantic partnership have all played in Imani's life. All of which gets reflected in her beautifully empowering words. Also, author Danzy Senna returns to recommend Elena Ferrante's The Lost Daughter, a short taught novel written before the more celebrated Neopolitan Novels.
Author Danzy Senna joins Kate, Medaya, and Eric to discuss her novel New People, a romantic "comedy" of manners that overflows with insight into race and identity in America. Senna describes how she crafts historical/cultural geographies: of Brooklyn in the '90s, Stanford University a few years earlier, and the nightmare utopia of Jonestown. The dialogue reveals an author of personal, very human, tales with tremendous resonance for our troubled Trumpian times. Also, poet and choreographer Harmony Holiday returns to recommend Toni Cade Bambara's novel The Salt Eaters.
Architect Frank Gehry sits down with Joseph Giovannini to discuss projects from across his career: including his rebuff of Donald Trump's inept courtship; his on-gong engagement with the LA River Project (which Giovannini has written about for LARB); and the many hurdles he had to overcome to complete the jewel of Downtown LA, Disney Hall. This is a Master both in repose and politically engaged; reflective and yet adamant that his work serve humanity.
LARB Radio goes in depth with poet Douglas Kearney. Co-hosts Janice Rhoshalle Littlejohn and Will Clark talk with the award-winning poet, librettest, and Cal Arts Professor about the progression of his publications, writing of and for the common (wo)man, the vibrant beauty of his language, and so much more! Also, Peter J Harris returns to recommend a 1970s underground classic of African literature, The Healers by Ghanaian author Ayi Kwei Armah.