Scholars

Episode 265: Russell Shorto

Holland’s seventeenth-century emphasis on trade rather than conquest helped build a culture of tolerance: everybody’s money is good. The author of The Island at the Center of the World offers a sort of moral defense of capitalism in a conversation at the Fraunces Tavern Museum: look out the window and see what he’s describing. Music from … Continue reading »

Fiction

Episode 264: Sloane Crosley

Like many funny writers, this essayist and novelist grew up around someone with a highly cultivated sense of humor, in this case her grandmother Nettie. “She was extremely funny. She was sarcastic in a very loving way, which I think is a hard note to hit.” The challenge of being simultaneously funny and sweet. Plus … Continue reading »

business & tech

Episode 263: Eben Bayer

The co-founder and CEO of Ecovative Designs, he  trained as a mechanical engineer but now devises products made from mushrooms. Mushrooms! “If the last century was about electronics,” he says, “ the next century is going to be about biology.” How inventors invent. Plus music from Bendt. How musicians musish. Continue reading »