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Lena Dunham explains how she incorporates real people and situations from her life into her hit HBO show "Girls" and the surprising reactions she receives from people in her past.
Republican strategist and pollster Kellyanne Conway and president of Planned Parenthood Cecile Richards debate Mitt Romney's true intentions in regard to female reproductive rights and whether women are more concerned about the right to an abortion or overall healthcare.
Malcolm Gladwell dissects one of the most iconic photographs from the Civil Rights Movement, concluding that, while not diminishing its power, it was actually staged by Martin Luther King Jr.
Would you rather be cared for in a hospital that produces fewer complications, or a hospital that has a better rescue rate? Atul Gawande, surgeon and New Yorker staff writer, explains which hospital is more likely to provide better care.
Salman Rushdie, author of Joseph Anton, discusses the right to free speech around the world. Rushdie declares that the cultural expression of the West cannot be dictated by religious violence.
Author Mark Costello, roommate of David Foster Wallace at Amherst College, and New Yorker fiction editor Deborah Treisman attempt to understand the motivations of Wallace's suicide in 2008. Costello, probably the person who best understood Wallace, believes that Wallace lost his will to live after his ability to write dried up.
Margaret Atwood, author of The Handmaid’s Tale, describes the challenges of creating a future that is full of such unusual products as a headless chicken.
Lauren Collins, staff writer at The New Yorker, discusses one of her most challenging interview experiences--the time she vomited on Donatella Versace.
Alison Bechdel, author and comic artist, recalls that her infamous comic strip 'Dykes to Watch Out For' originated not only from feminism but deep-seated family secrets and tragedy.
A panel consisting of Jonathan Safran Foer, Tea Obreht, and Gary Shteyngart contemplates the death of the novel. Foer believes the novel can't compete with technology, while Shteyngart sees fiction as the new poetry. Adam Gopnik moderates.
Malcolm Gladwell recounts Civil Rights protests organized by Martin Luther King Jr. in Birmingham, Alabama. While King was attacked by a Nazi in 1963, he counters with a hug and forgiveness.
Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas reflects on his experience living as an undocumented immigrant for 15 years and how it feels when people like Lou Dobbs use the term "illegal." It can be damaging and demeaning.
Lawrence Lessig argues that America's current system of unlimited political campaign contributions is corrupt. Campaign financing is concentrated among too few people, which makes politicians overly dependent on these donors and undermines the very nature of democracy.
The career of Wilhelm Richard Wagner is controversial for its influence on the Nazi Party. New Yorker music critic Alex Ross declares that, justly or unjustly, Wagner should be judged both through the prism of art and the historical context that frames it.
David Maraniss, author of Barack Obama: The Story, analyzes President Obama's performance in his first debate with Mitt Romney and traces his failure back to behavioral patterns from his earlier life and, in particular, the fact he doesn't like confrontation.