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Fri, Dec 28, 2012 -- 10:00 AM
Fri, Dec 28, 2012 -- 10:00 AM The Art of Obituaries

Some people think of obituaries as sad. Not obit writers, though. It's been said that the best obits are actually about life and that death is just the footnote. We discuss the craft of obituary writing, what kind of life warrants an obit and the effect of the Internet and social media on how we remember the dead.

Fri, Dec 28, 2012 -- 9:30 AM
Fri, Dec 28, 2012 -- 9:30 AM EPA Chief Lisa Jackson Steps Down

Lisa Jackson announced on Thursday that she would leave her post as head of the Environmental Protection Agency. We look at Jackson's tenure at the agency, and discuss President Obama's record on the environment. And we ask our listeners: What should Obama's environmental priorities be in his second term?

Fri, Dec 28, 2012 -- 9:00 AM
Fri, Dec 28, 2012 -- 9:00 AM Putin to Halt U.S. Adoptions

Russian President Vladimir Putin says he will sign a law banning Americans from adopting Russian children. The new policy, which threatens 1,500 pending adoptions, comes in response to a U.S. law which seeks to punish Russian human rights violators. We talk with a Bay Area adoption advocate about Russia's action.

Thu, Dec 27, 2012 -- 10:00 AM
Thu, Dec 27, 2012 -- 10:00 AM The Rise and Fall of California

Professor and political analyst Larry Gerston's latest book chronicles what led to the Golden State's economic and cultural upsurge, and its subsequent fall from grace. Among other things, the book, "Not So Golden After All," asks whether California can return to glory again.

Thu, Dec 27, 2012 -- 9:00 AM
Thu, Dec 27, 2012 -- 9:00 AM The Environmental Costs of Growing Pot

The rise of medical marijuana and resulting boom in pot farms has stressed the delicate habitats of California's North Coast and other regions. Scientists say marijuana farmers are spraying pesticides, removing trees and siphoning water. We'll discuss the ecological impacts of this growing industry.

Wed, Dec 26, 2012 -- 10:00 AM
Wed, Dec 26, 2012 -- 10:00 AM David Thomson's 'The Big Screen'

San Francisco-based film critic and historian David Thomson joins us to discuss his sweeping new work, "The Big Screen: The Story of the Movies." Thomson's other books include "The New Biographical Dictionary of Film" and "Have You Seen...?"

Wed, Dec 26, 2012 -- 9:00 AM
Wed, Dec 26, 2012 -- 9:00 AM The Year in Politics 2012

The year's top stories include the closely contested U.S. presidential election, disputes over the budget and an economy that continues to sputter along. The nation also endured tragic mass shootings and revived the debate over gun control. We'll review the most notable news from a busy 2012.

Tue, Dec 25, 2012 -- 10:30 AM
Tue, Dec 25, 2012 -- 10:30 AM From the Archives: Dave Eggers

As part of our holiday programming, we revisit our interview with writer Dave Eggers. He talks about his new novel titled A Hologram for the King, which follows a struggling, middle-aged American businessman working in Saudi Arabia. Eggers joins us to discuss the book, and one of its central themes: the decline of American manufacturing. We also get the latest on Eggers' efforts to promote college access and literacy for youth.

Tue, Dec 25, 2012 -- 10:00 AM
Tue, Dec 25, 2012 -- 10:00 AM From the Archives: The French Art of Parenting

No need to turn into a Tiger Mother -- writer Pamela Druckerman says it's the French model American parents should be watching. While raising her own children in Paris, Druckerman observed a nation of hands-off, no-nonsense mothers and fathers raising well tempered children who eat their food and sleep through the night. Should American parents raise their Jacks and Marys more like Jacques and Madelines? We revisit a portion of our interview with Pamela Druckerman as part of our special holiday programming.

Tue, Dec 25, 2012 -- 9:30 AM
Tue, Dec 25, 2012 -- 9:30 AM From the Archives: Sherman Alexie

As part of our special holiday programming, we revisit our interview with National Book Award winner Sherman Alexie. Since he broke into the literary scene in the mid-'90s with "The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven" and other stories about growing up on a reservation, he hasn't shied away from sensitive topics like alcoholism and abuse among Native Americans. His book "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian" was on the list of Top 10 most frequently challenged books in America. Alexie talks about his book "Blasphemy," a collection of 15 new stories and 15 old favorites covering topics from donkey basketball to wind turbines.

Tue, Dec 25, 2012 -- 9:00 AM
Tue, Dec 25, 2012 -- 9:00 AM From the Archives: A Candid History of Christmas

Where did Christmas customs like tree decorating, stocking stuffing and gift-giving originate? Was St. Nick a real person? We replay a portion of our interview with holiday historian Bruce David Forbes to illuminate us on these traditions and discuss his book "Christmas: A Candid History."

Mon, Dec 24, 2012 -- 10:30 AM
Mon, Dec 24, 2012 -- 10:30 AM 'The End of Men'

As part of our special holiday programming, we revisit our interview with Hanna Rosin about her book, "The End of Men and the Rise of Women." The journalist argues that women are winning in the new economy, surpassing men in education and at work while continuing to exercise power at home. Hanna Rosin talks about the changing social order, and what both sexes have to do to adapt.

Mon, Dec 24, 2012 -- 10:00 AM
Mon, Dec 24, 2012 -- 10:00 AM What Great Bosses Know

For years, managers have been asking Jill Geisler where to go for advice on how to improve the workplace and lead their staff effectively. Known for her Poynter.org column and podcasts, Geisler builds on the tools and tips given there in her book, "Work Happy: What Great Bosses Know." We listen back to an interview with the management guru about her book and her step-by-step approach to improving bosses and work environments.

Mon, Dec 24, 2012 -- 9:30 AM
Mon, Dec 24, 2012 -- 9:30 AM David Talbot's 'Season of the Witch'

In the 1970s, San Francisco emerged from the summer of love into a much darker period. From the assassinations of George Moscone and Harvey Milk to the massacre at Jonestown to the beginning of the AIDS epidemic, the city was rocked with calamities. Journalist David Talbot takes on the tumultuous years from 1967 to 1982 in his book "Season of the Witch: Enchantment, Terror, and Deliverance in in the City of Love." We listen back to a portion of our interview with David Talbot, founder and former editor in chief of Salon.

Mon, Dec 24, 2012 -- 9:00 AM
Mon, Dec 24, 2012 -- 9:00 AM Adam Johnson

As part of our special holiday programming, we revisit our interview with Adam Johnson about his novel "The Orphan Master's Son," which The New York Times called "daring and remarkable" for the extraordinary lens it provides on life in North Korea. The detail in Johnson's novel is a result of his travels there in 2007.

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