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The Republic of Imagination

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Monday, Iranian-American author Azar Nafisi joins us to talk about the state of literature and the humanities in the US. Using the great American works Huck Finn, Babbitt, and The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, she argues the greatest danger to the literary arts is not a totalitarian regime, but the "intellectual indolence" of the public. Nafisi says it matters because literature is more than entertainment; it is a guide to a better society. Her new book is called The Republic of Imagination.

Azar Nafisi is the author of Reading Lolita in Tehran [Indiebound|Amazon] and The Republic of Imagination: America in Three Books [Indiebound|Amazon]. She's a Visiting Professor and the executive director of Cultural Conversations at the Foreign Policy Institute of Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, DC.

Doug Fabrizio has been reporting for KUER News since 1987, and became News Director in 1993. In 2001, he became host and executive producer of KUER's RadioWest, a one hour conversation/call-in show on KUER 90.1 in Salt Lake City. He has gained a reputation for his thoughtful style. He has interviewed everyone from Isabel Allende to the Dalai Lama, and from Madeleine Albright to Desmond Tutu. His interview skills landed him a spot as a guest host of the national NPR program, "Talk of the Nation." He has won numerous awards for his reporting and for his work with RadioWest and KUED's Utah NOW from such organizations as the Society of Professional Journalists, the Utah Broadcasters Association, the Public Radio News Directors Association and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.