World War Two ended a very long time ago, but pieces of the truth about those times are only now emerging. And at the hands of a fiction writer! In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, Sebastian Faulks spotlights the complicity of the French in the crimes of the Vichy regime. And celebrated novelist Michael Ondaatje revisits the Civil War in his native Sri Lanka. New truths from old tales, next time on To the Best of Our Knowledge.
Michael Ondaatje, author of "The English Patient," and "Anil's Ghost," tells Steve Paulson that his new book is set in his native Sri Lanka during the recent civil war. Ondaatje talks about the book and the political situation it reflects. And reads an excerpt. Also, Sebastian Faulks hit pay dirt with his World War One novel, "Birdsong." In "Charlotte Gray" he takes on the issue of French complicity during the Vichy regime. Faulks tells Jim Fleming that villagers cooperated with the Nazis for a variety of reasons, and that many welcomed the measures taken against Jews. Faulks says the attitude in France has largely been one of denial.SEGMENT 2:
Journalist Ron Rosenbaum's pieces appear in some of America's best magazines. He also writes a column for the New York Observer, and is the author of "Explaining Hitler." Rosenbaum tells Steve Paulson how he got into journalism and why the reporter's first job is to tell the truth. He explains how the cult of personality around Elisabeth Kubler-Ross obscured disturbing facts about some of her followers. Rosenbaum's new book is "The Secret Parts of Fortune," an anthology of his journalism.SEGMENT 3:
Leslie Chang is the author of "Beyond the Narrow Gate: The Journey of Four Chinese Women from the Middle Kingdom to Middle America." She tells Jim Fleming that her mother has remained life-long friends with three schoolmates, and describes how each has fared in adjusting to a new culture. Chang says she herself sometimes feels like an outsider in both Chinese and American society. Paisley Rekdal has an even bigger identity problem. She tells Steve Paulson that as the child of a Chinese mother and Norwegian father, she represents a new kind of American, and that some parts of American society are changing faster than others to accommodate people like her.Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 01-07-15-A.
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