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Extension 720 Classic, Audio Archives, February 2006

David Galenson, professor of economics at the University of Chicago, and Joshua Kotin, graduate student in English language and literature and editor of the Chicago Review discuss the nature of artistic genius and evaluate the careers of such diverse personages as Robert Frost, T.S. Eliot, Pablo Picasso, Paul Cezanne, Orson Welles and Alfred Hitchcok. The basis for this conversation is Galenson's new book Old Masters and Young Geniuses: The Two Life Cycles of Artistic Creativity. (02/24/06)

The Nature of Genius (87:13)

In this discussion, we examine the Civil War from the side of the confederates, with three experts on the subject: Vernon Burton, professor of history and sociology at the University of Illinois Urbana- Champaign, Michael Perman, professor of history at the University of Illinois Chicago, and James Swanson, author of Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln's Killer. (02/22/06)

The Confederacy (86:42)

Alan Dershowitz, professor of law at Harvard Law School, discusses the importance of preemption in the modern war on terror, as well as discussing his views on the current state of academic life in America. Dershowitz's latest book is Preemption: A Knife That Cuts Both Ways (Issues of Our Time). (02/20/06)

Alan Dershowitz (86:42)

A discussion of the importance and development of religious belief with Daniel C. Dennett, professor of philosophy, co-director of the Center for Cognitive Studies at Tufts University and author of the new book Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon, and David Cook, professor of philosophy at Wheaton College. (02/15/06)

Examining Religion (85:29)

David Zarefsky, professor of communications at Northwestern University, leads an illustrated tour through the history of oratory and rhetoric. Some of the speeches profiled in this show are Pericles' Funeral Oration, the St. Crispin's Day speech from Henry V, Nixon's Checkers speech, and Bill Cosby's address to the NAACP on the fiftieth anniversary of Brown v. the Board of Education. (02/07/06)

Great Speeches (87:06)

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Taylor Branch discusses the final volume in his three-part series chronicling the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. At Canaan's Edge: America in the King Years, 1965-68. In this interview, he analyzes the importance of the Selma march, details the fragmentation of the Civil Rights movements, and explores the implications of King's assassination. (02/06/06)

Taylor Branch (86:41)

William Rice, the new president of Shimer College, and Daniel Born, editor of The Common Review (the quarterly publication of the Great Books Foundation) discuss some of the greatest works of Western Civilization and examine why they should be read and studied. They also read and analyze excerpts from Homer, Shakespeare, Edgar Allen Poe, Hemingway and other great authors. (02/02/06)

Great Books (88:55)

Noted Lincoln scholar Richard Carwardine, Rhodes Professor of American History at Oxford University, discusses his new political biography of Abraham Lincoln, Lincoln: A Life of Purpose and Power. During this interview, he examines Lincoln's attitudes towards race, religion and the causes of the Civil War. (02/01/06)

Richard Carwardine (85:13)

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