biography

The Roundtable
10:10 am
Wed November 13, 2013

"Autobiography Of Mark Twain, Volume 2: The Complete And Authoritative Edition"

  

Mark Twain’s complete, uncensored Autobiography was an instant bestseller when the first volume was published in 2010, on the centennial of the author’s death, as he requested.

Co-Editor, Benjamin Griffin joins us to talk about the eagerly-awaited Volume 2, which delves deeper into Mark Twain’s life, uncovering the many roles he played in his private and public worlds.

The Roundtable
10:10 am
Wed October 30, 2013

“Johnny Carson” By Henry Bushkin

From 1962 until 1992, Johnny Carson hosted The Tonight Show and permeated the American consciousness.  During the apex of his reign, Carson’s longtime lawyer and best friend was Henry Bushkin.

Bushkin writes of his time with Carson in the new book, Johnny Carson.

The Roundtable
11:12 am
Mon October 28, 2013

Solomon Northup: The Complete Story of the Author of Twelve Years A Slave

Solomon Northup was a free man who was lured from his home in Saratoga and kidnapped into slavery in 1841. His life is the subject of the upcoming film, 12 Years A Slave which opens at The Spectrum Theatre in Albany this Friday.

The new biography, Solomon Northup: The Complete Story of the Author of Twelve Years A Slave provides a compelling chronological narrative of Northup's entire life, from his birth in an isolated settlement in upstate New York to the activities he pursued after his release from slavery.

The biography was written by Clifford Brown, a political science professor at Union College in Schenectady, Rachel Seligman, former head of Union’s gallery (she now works at the Tang at Skidmore College); and David Friske, former librarian for the state.

The Roundtable
11:35 am
Wed October 23, 2013

“Duke: A Life of Duke Ellington” by Terry Teachout

Duke Ellington was the greatest jazz composer of the 20th century.  His songs—he wrote more than 1500 of them—have been recorded by a who’s who of popular music, from Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, and Tony Bennett to Steely Dan. 

The grandson of a slave, he dropped out of high school to become one of the world’s most famous musicians, a showman of incomparable suavity who was as comfortable in Carnegie Hall as in the nightclubs where he honed his style. Many of his compositions, like “Mood Indigo” and “Sophisticated Lady,” remain beloved standards.  

In Duke: A Life of Duke Ellington, Terry Teachout, drama critic of The Wall Street Journal, jazz musician, and author of Pops, an acclaimed biography of Louis Armstrong, reveals the many layers of a man as unique and complex as the music he created. 

The Roundtable
11:12 am
Tue October 22, 2013

"Brigham Young: A Concise Biography of the Mormon Moses" by Ed Breslin

In the new book Brigham Young: A Concise Biography of the Mormon Moses, author Ed Breslin examines Young’s life using a scholarly focus with a sense of measured admiration, but he doesn’t gloss over the darker aspects such as Young’s role in the Mountain Meadows Massacre.

Breslin left his job as publisher and senior vice president of HarperCollins to be a full-time writer after more than two decades in publishing, and has co-written biographies of William Tecumseh Sherman and George S. Patton. In 2008, he collaborated on Sen. Mel Martinez’s memoir, A Sense of Belonging.

The Roundtable
11:12 am
Wed September 4, 2013

"Hammarskjöld: A Life" By Roger Lipsey

    After his mysterious death, Dag Hammarskjöld was described by John F. Kennedy as the "greatest statesman of our century." The second secretary-general of the United Nations, he is the only person to have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize posthumously.

Through extensive research in little explored archives and personal correspondence, Roger Lipsey has written a massive biography of Dag Hammarskjöld. Hammarskjöld: A Life provides vivid new insights into Hammarskjöld’s life.

Roger Lipsey is an author, art historian, editor, and translator and has written on a wide range of topics and intellectual figures.

The Roundtable
11:30 am
Wed August 7, 2013

"Bolivar" by Marie Arana

    

  Simón Bolivar freed six countries from Spanish rule, traveled more than 75,000 miles on horseback to do so, and became the greatest figure in Latin American history. His life is epic, heroic, straight out of Hollywood: he fought battle after battle in punishing terrain, forged uncertain coalitions of competing forces and races, lost his beautiful wife soon after they married and never remarried (although he did have a succession of mistresses, including one who held up the revolution and another who saved his life), and he died relatively young, uncertain whether his achievements would endure.

Drawing on a wealth of primary documents, novelist and journalist Marie Arana brilliantly captures early nineteenth-century South America and the explosive tensions that helped revolutionize Bolívar.

The Roundtable
11:45 am
Thu May 2, 2013

"Farewell, Dorothy Parker" by Ellen Meister

    Novelist Ellen Meister is a serious Dorothy Parker fan. So much so, she created a Facebook page dedicated to the literary icon and celebrated wit. When it came to writing about her, since Meister is a novelist not a biographer, she decided to write in Dorothy Parker's voice - as a ghost. We’ll talk with Ellen Meister about her book Farewell, Dorothy Parker.

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The Roundtable
10:10 am
Mon April 8, 2013

"Hopper" by Tom Folsom

    

  Dennis Hopper was the chopper-riding hippie outlaw in Easy Rider, the prophetic madman in the jungle in Apocalypse Now, the terrifying psychopath in Blue Velvet and the kid gone wrong in Rebel Without a Cause.

The actor was taken under the wing of James Dean, a friendship that set Dennis Hopper on his path to becoming a star. He was a quintessentially American dreamer longing to be the next Orson Welles, a hell-raising director who revolutionized Hollywood.

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The Roundtable
11:35 am
Wed March 27, 2013

"Young Titan: The Making of Winston Churchill" by Michael Shelden

    In modern memory, Winston Churchill remains the man with the cigar and the equanimity among the ruins. Few can remember that at the age of 40, he was considered washed up, his best days behind him.

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