According to New Yorker writer George Packer, there used to be a kind of deal among Americans — a deal in which everyone had a place.
"People were more constrained than they are today, they had less freedom," he says, "but they had more security and there was a sense in which each generation felt that the next generation would be able to improve itself, to do better."
On-air challenge: Every answer is a familiar two-word phrase or name in which the first word starts with H-A and the second word starts with T.
Last week's challenge: From listener Al Gori of Cozy Lake, N.J. Name a famous American man — first and last names. Change the first letter of his first name from T to H. The result will sound like a term for an attractive person. Who is it?
Once vehemently opposed to the idea of being the subject of a documentary, Brooks had a change of heart. The result is a new American Masters episode, <em>Mel Brooks: Make a Noise.</em>
Credit WNET/American Masters
Comedian, writer, director, producer and actor Mel Brooks is one of only 11 people to have won Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony awards. Others in the elite EGOT club include Mike Nichols and Whoopi Goldberg.
Credit Brooksfilms LTD
Carl Reiner and Brooks teamed up as a comedy duo in 1960, creating such now-legendary skits as "The 2,000-Year-Old Man." "Carl's still my best friend in the world," says Brooks.
Credit Robert Trachtenberg / WNET/American Masters
Over the 60 years that Mel Brooks has been in the entertainment business, his name has become synonymous with comedy. He is the man who broke Broadway records for most Tony Award wins with The Producers (an adaptation of his own movie); who satirized Westerns and racism in Blazing Saddles; and who poked fun at monster movies with Young Frankenstein.
After uproar over some lesson plans some conservatives deemed un-American, a Texas company has decided scrap a curriculum system used by 877 school districts that were too small or too poor to produce their own.
To mark network upfronts week, we talk in this episode about the cancellation of shows, including the ones that came and went that we honestly can hardly remember as well as the ones — like ABC's delightful, hilarious Happy Endings — that break our hearts.
Pete Pin was born in Khao-I-dang, a refugee camp on the border of Cambodia and Thailand. Fleeing the infamous "killing fields" of Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge regime, his family eventually resettled in Stockton, Calif., in the mid-1980s. What started with a single portrait of his grandmother has evolved into a deeply personal project that aims to explore the Cambodian diaspora.
Ah, if only all summers could be like June, July and August 1740 — when three young guys (and a 6-year-old and a 3-year-old) did a science experiment that startled the world. In those days, you could do biology without a fancy diploma. More people could play.