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Friday, September 28, 2012

  • Alice Walker on 30th Anniv. of "The Color Purple": Racism, Violence Against Women Are Global Issues

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    On the 30th anniversary of the publication of "The Color Purple," we speak with author, poet and activist Alice Walker about her groundbreaking novel and its enduring legacy. Set mainly in rural Georgia in the 1930s, the book tells the story of a young, poor African-American woman named Celie and her struggle for empowerment in a world marked by sexism, racism and patriarchy. The novel earned Walker a Pulitzer Prize in 1983, making her the first African-American woman to win the Pulitzer for fiction. Walker explains the origin of the book’s title and explores some of its central characters and their connection to her own family history. [includes rush transcript]

  • Palestine Conditions "More Brutal" Than in U.S. South of 50 Years Ago, Says Author Alice Walker

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    We continue our conversation with the legendary poet, author and activist, Alice Walker, who has also been a longtime advocate for the rights of Palestinians. Last summer, she was one of the activists on the U.S. ship that attempted to sail to Gaza as part of the Freedom Flotilla aimed at challenging Israel’s embargo of the Gaza Strip. Alice Walker also serves on the jury of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine, an international people’s tribunal created in 2009 to bring attention to the responsibility other states bear for Israel’s violations of international law. Walker describes her upbringing in the segregated South, then goes on to discuss today’s segregation in the Occupied Territories. "The unfairness of it is so much like the South. It’s so much like the South of 50 years ago, really, and actually more brutal, because in Palestine so many more people are wounded, shot, shot, killed, imprisoned. You know, there are thousands of Palestinians in prison virtually for no reason,” Walker says. [includes rush transcript]

  • "Democratic Womanism": Poet and Activist Alice Walker on Women Rising, Obama and the 2012 Election

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    With less than 40 days to go before the 2012 presidential election, poet and activist Alice Walker reads her new poem, "Democratic Womanism," and discusses her thoughts on President Obama’s legacy, including his use of drone strikes. "You ask me why I smile when you tell me you intend in the coming national elections to hold your nose and vote for the lesser of two evils," reads Walker. "There are more than two evils out there, is one reason I smile." [includes rush transcript]