To The Best of Our Knowledge
from Wisconsin Public Radio
What if your family had owned slaves? In this hour
of To the Best of Our Knowledge one man's attempt to apologize
for the sins of his family's past. Also, mizuko kuyo, the Japanese
ritual ceremony of apology to aborted fetuses. What does it mean
to say "I'm sorry."
Cary Sudler is descended from a slave-holding
plantation family. He discovered that he shares the Sudler name
with both black and white families in the area around the old
plantation. Sudler went back to apologize to the black Sudlers
and talk about the family's history with as many of his relatives
as he could find. Their reactions are powerful, fascinating and
disturbing. Sudler lives in Los Angeles and continues to work
on his family's history.
Psychologist Robert Karen, author of "The
Forgiving Self: The Road from Resentment to Connection," tells
Jim Fleming that forcing kids to apologize when they're not really
sorry is a bad idea. He says it devalues forgiveness, which is
really important when people need to connect with each other.
Also, we get the Monty Python take on apologies, and Dr. William
Frey, director of the Alzheimer's Research Center at Regents
Hospital in Minnesota and author of "Crying: A Mystery of Tears,"
talks with Steve Paulson about the physiology of tears.
William La Fleur is the author of "Liquid
Life: Abortion and Buddhism in Japan." He tells Anne Strainchamps
about the Japanese mizuko rituals which are a form of public apology
addressed to aborted fetuses. Japan has one of the world's highest
rates of abortion, and these rituals help the women involved deal
with their grief and guilt.
Cassette copies are available
at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 02-01-27-A.
- William H. Frey,
Crying: the mystery of tears (Norton)
- Robert Karon, The Forgiving Self: the
road from resentment to connection (Doubleday)
- William R. LaFleur, Liquid Life:
abortion and Buddhism in Japan (Princeton)
- Brenda Lee:
I'm Sorry from Greatest Hits
- Sweet Honey in the Rock: Echoes from
Breaths on Flying Fish
- Cowboy Junkies: Dreaming My Dreams with
You from The Trinity Sessions BMG
- David Gray: Please Forgive Me from
White Ladder on RCA
- There's a Tear in My Beer from Hanky
Panky on Sony
- Radiohead: Hunting Bears from Amnesiac
- Edo Lullaby on Elektra Asylum Nonesuch
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