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The New Yorker Radio Hour

The New Yorker Radio Hour

Author: WNYC Studios and The New Yorker

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David Remnick is joined by The New Yorker’s award-winning writers, editors and artists to present a weekly mix of profiles, storytelling, and insightful conversations about the issues that matter — plus an occasional blast of comic genius from the magazine’s legendary Shouts and Murmurs page. The New Yorker has set a standard in journalism for generations and The New Yorker Radio Hour gives it a voice on public radio for the first time. Produced by The New Yorker and WNYC Studios.
WNYC Studios is a listener-supported producer of other leading podcasts including Radiolab, On the Media, Snap Judgment, Death, Sex & Money, Here’s the Thing with Alec Baldwin, Nancy and many more.
© WNYC Studios
195 Episodes
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Kelly Slater’s Perfect Wave Brings Surfing to a Crossroads
In December of 2015, a video appeared on the Internet that stunned surfers worldwide. Titled “Kelly’s Wave,” it showed Kelly Slater—arguably the best pro surfer in history—unveiling a secret project he had been working on for more than a decade. With the help of engineers and designers, Slater had perfected the first artificial wave, created by machine in a pool, that could rival the best waves found in the ocean. “One could spend years and years surfing in the ocean,” notes staff writer William Finnegan, himself a lifelong surfer, “and never get a wave as good as what some people are getting here today. Ever.” Finnegan went to visit the Kelly Slater Wave Company’s Surf Ranch—a facility in California’s Central Valley, far from the coast—to observe a competition and test the wave for himself. Up until now, surfing was defined by its lack of predictability: chasing waves around the world and dealing with disappointment when they do not appear has been integral to the life of a surfer. But with a mechanically produced, infinitely repeatable, world-class wave, surfing can become like any other sport. The professional World Surf League, which has bought a controlling interest in Slater’s company, sees a bright future.But Finnegan wonders what it means to take surfing out of nature. Will kids master riding artificial waves without even learning to swim in the ocean? Finnegan spoke with Kelly Slater, Stephanie Gilmore (the Australian seven-time world champion), and Matt Warshaw (the closest thing surfing has to an official historian). Warshaw, like Finnegan, is skeptical about the advent of mechanical waves. Yet he admits that, when he had the chance to ride it, he didn’t ever want to stop. “It reminded me of 1986,” Warshaw recalls. “The drugs have run out, you already hate yourself—how do we get more?”William Finnegan’s article “Kelly Slater’s Shock Wave” appeared this month in The New Yorker.
Aaron Sorkin Rewrites “To Kill a Mockingbird”
As he set about adapting “To Kill a Mockingbird” for the stage—the play opened this week on Broadway—Aaron Sorkin first wrote a version that he says was very much like the novel, but “with stage directions.” As he delved into the character of Atticus Finch, though, he found himself troubled. The small-town lawyer is tolerant, but too tolerant, tolerant of everything, including the violent racism of many of his neighbors—which he attempts to understand rather than condemn. And Sorkin felt that Lee’s two black characters, the maid Calpurnia and the falsely accused Tom Robinson, had no real voice in the book. “I imagine that, in 1960, using African-American characters as atmosphere is the kind of thing that would go unnoticed by white people,” he tells David Remnick. “In 2018, it doesn’t go unnoticed, and it’s wrong, and it’s also a wasted opportunity.”  Sorkin’s changes in his adaptation led to a lawsuit from Harper Lee’s literary executor, who had approved him as the playwright but placed specific conditions on the faithfulness of his script. In Sorkin’s view, the criticisms of the executor, Tonja Carter, were tantamount to racism. He thinks they reinforced the lack of voice and agency of black people in the South in the nineteen-thirties. (Carter declined to comment on Sorkin’s remarks.) The two sides eventually reached a settlement, in May, and the play proceeded to production. Sorkin says that, of his own volition, he cut some of his lines that hinted too broadly at the political realities of America under Donald Trump. But Atticus Finch’s realization—that the people in his community whom he thought he knew best, he never really knew at all—mirrors the experience of many Americans since 2016.Plus, a Minnesota senator on running as a Democrat in the age of Trump.  
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Comments (10)

Rachel McVey

Thanks for having David Bentley Hart on the show to talk about his translation of the New Testament! I was a member of a Bible church until age 24 and was "in the word" every day, instructing others in the scriptures -- while trying my best not to think too much about research on the history of the Bible and its translation that suggested my leather bound NIV might not be precisely God's truth. After listening to this episode, I immediately bought a copy of Hart's translation. It will be the first Bible I'll have opened in more than two years!

Dec 23rd
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Peter Chaloner

Call them Arabs. Call them owners of 22 countries. There are no 'Palestinians.'

Sep 25th
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Modus Pwnens

Peter Chaloner well i guess sort of since theyre being colonized by israel

Nov 30th
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L.S. Mitchell

The ending of this podcast made irony incarnate.

Jul 7th
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Drea Griffin

I think Mark is right. Unless DEMS win being "on my side" serves no purpose

Jun 1st
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Bridget Rathman

it's a little hard to listen to two men talk about women hiding their sexual assault. at one point the interviewer says that one of the women lied to Ronin about her sexual assuault. that's a harsh word choice to apply to a survivor. it's every survivor's choice as to whether or not they want to speak about what happened to them. it's no one's place to judge them for that decision. also the comment Ronin made that it's surprising that pretty, poised women also get sexually harassed is gross on multiple levels. I appreciate what you're doing and am glad this story is out, and am grateful for the part these journalists played. I'm so thankful that you had the woman come on and point out at that it's men listening that had changed. I feel like so much of the focus was on blaming women for not speaking out rather than on men not listening.

May 11th
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David Charbonneau

Schwartz's perspective seems to be that all heterosexual relations are hopelessly f'd up by the bad habits of men. If alien anthropologists picked up this interview on their galactic short wave, they'd have to conclude that the vast majority of men and women are unmarried or desperately sexually unhappy in their relationships because of the bad sexual ideology of men. Please, give me a break. By all means, let's create a culture where abusers and harassers feel ostracized and are so effectively and consistently punished that the deterrents are decisive. But to try and legislate the bedroom is cultural fascism and not only can only lead to pervasive sexual alienation but also completely abdicates the equal responsibility for the state of sexual relations in a non-abusive, consensual relationship, which, by the way, are the vast majority of relationships in this country.

Feb 3rd
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B Knapp

David Charbonneau Cosby is a BIG start

May 1st
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marlon cxxx

LOVE The TNYRD

Dec 31st
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Noor Al Wattar

my favourite thing on the internet

Nov 9th
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